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Posts Tagged ‘WTTW’

Al Jazeera America Announces Correspondents for Regional Bureaus

Al Jazeera America is adding five more correspondents from the local news landscape to its ranks. The network has announced the hires of Ash-har Quraishi, Heidi Zhou-Castro, Bisi Onile-EreNatasha Ghoneim and Jonathan Martin.

The three hires were revealed as the network, which is slated to launch next month, announced plans to open bureaus in 12 cities across the United States:  Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Detroit, Los Angeles, Miami, Nashville, New Orleans, New York, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington, D.C. With the exception of Zhou-Castro and Ghoneim, each of the correspondents will stay in the same market as they join Al Jazeera.

Quraishi, who will be Al Jazeera America’s Chicago correspondent, joins the network from WTTW, the PBS station in Chicago, where he was a reporter for the nightly newscast “Chicago Tonight” and a contributor to PBS “NewsHour.”

Zhou Castro joins Al Jazeera from YNN Austin, where she was the evening and weekend news anchor. She will be based in the network’s Dallas bureau.

Onile-Ere will be based in Detroit for Al Jazeera. She comes from WDIV, the NBC affiliate in Detroit.  Read more

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Sinclair to Buy Freedom Communications Stations

Sinclair Broadcast Group will purchase the eight-station Freedom Communications station group for $385 million, the company announced today. The deal will be reviewed by the FCC and is expected to cl0se early next year.

Sinclair announced the deal in conjunction with the company’s third-quarter earnings report, which included net broadcast revenues of $151.7 million. Compared to the same quarter last year, revenue dipped 4.5%, mostly due to lack of political advertising, according to Sinclair.

Until the deal closes, Sinclair will operate the stations under a local marketing agreement. In September, Sinclair announced the purchase of Four Points Media, a seven-station, $200 million purchase. Read more

WTTW Will Bring Content From Al Jazeera English to Chicago

Starting October 31, Chicago public television station WTTW will air global programming from Al Jazeera English for an hour each day.

Launched in 2006, Al Jazeera English is available in a limited capacity in the U.S. The agreement with WTTW will make AJE programming available to Chicago viewers for the first time.

“It’s covering issues in parts of the world that we don’t often hear from,” WTTW head of programming Dan Soles told the Chicago Tribune. “We thought it would be a service to give people in Chicago a chance to view this broadcast, which is seen all over the world.”

WTTW will air the Al Jazeera programming on weekdays from 5:30 to 6:30 a.m.; on a digital channel, it will also air from 6:30 to 7 a.m. and 11 to 11:30 p.m.

Mike Leiderman to Oversee WFLD’s Struggling 9 p.m. Newscast

It’s official: Mike Leiderman is joining Chicago’s WFLD as an executive producer. Leiderman, who previously served as the EP of WTTW news magazine show “Chicago Tonight,” will oversee WFLD’s 9 p.m. newscast, anchored by Robin Robinson and Bob Sirott.

In last month’s sweeps period, the newscast was down more than a full rating point from the previous year.

The move was first rumored by Robert Feder of Time Out Chicago, who pointed out that Sirott was the host of “Chicago Tonight” during Leiderman’s tenure.

Assistant news director Geoff Dankert has been overseeing the Fox-affiliate’s nighttime newscast since Tony Statz, the previous EP, left for Miami’s WFOR.

“Mike brings a fresh eye to Fox Chicago at a key time, as we look to distinguish our product in both what we say and how we say it,” Carol Fowler, WFLD’s vice president and news director, said in announcing the hiring to staff.