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Posts Tagged ‘WZZM’

WBIR Gave Taz Painter a Goodbye to Remember Before He Left for WZZM

Painter goodbye WBIRTaz Painter started work at his new job as news director of Gannett owned Grand Rapids, MI, ABC affiliate WZZM today.

Last week, his old station, Gannett owned WBIR in Knoxville, said goodbye with a list of what Painter would find in Grand Rapids, videotaped tributes from colleagues, and an appearance by Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett, who brought a bag of Chuy’s Mexican Food and a proclamation declaring April 9 “Taz Painter Appreciation Day.”

“And I understand what this qualifies you for, if you pull out of town and you’re speeding,” said Burchett while handing Painter the proclamation. “If you show that to the sheriff’s deputies that they just put the taser on stun.”

Watch the video after the jump. Read more

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WZZM Names Taz Painter News Director

taz painter smallTaz Painter has been named news director at WZZM, the ABC affiliate in Grand Rapids, Mich. Painter begins in his new role on April 14.

It is a move within Gannett for Painter, who has been managing editor at WBIR, the NBC affiliate in Knoxville, since 2007. He previously worked at KOAT in Albuquerque and WYFF in Greenville, S.C.

“Taz has a passion for creative storytelling, with an emphasis on watchdog and advocacy journalism, on all multimedia platforms. He brings a wealth of experience from his years at the top-rated station in Knoxville,” WZZM president and general manager Janet Mason said in a statement.

Painter replaces Stanton Tang, who is leaving WZZM to be closer to his family.

News Director Stanton Tang Leaving WZZM

wzzm logoStanton Tang is stepping down from his post as news director of WZZM in Grand Rapids, Mich., to be closer to his family out West, mlive.com reports.

WZZM president and general manager Janet Mason told mlive.com that Tang will stay with the station for the next few months. “We’ve agreed on a timeline that gives him time to finalize his plans and the station time to find our next news director,” Mason said.

Tang has been the ABC affiliate’s news director since 2009. He joined WZZM as an executive producer in 2005. Prior to that, he worked at KLAS in Las Vegas, KCRA in Sacramento and KPNX in Phoenix.

Sports Anchor Tom Helmer Joins KCNC

Tom Helmer is joining KCNC, the CBS O&O in Denver, as a sports anchor. He will begin on July 22.

“We are really excited to have Tom join the CBS4 team,” KCNC news director Tim Wieland said in a statement. “He makes fan involvement key in sharing sports with viewers and his experience is a great fit for our station.”

Helmer joins the station from Root Sports, where he co-hosted broadcasts of Colorado Rockies games and covered collegiate and high school athletics. He has also worked at KXTV in Sacramento and WZZM in Grand Rapids.

Anchor Lee Van Ameyde Transitions to New Role at WZZM

Lee Van Ameyde is reducing his hours at the WZZM anchor desk, according to Mlive.com.

Van Ameyde, who has worked at the Grand Rapids ABC affiliate for 36 years, is transitioning to a new role as the head of the station’s investigative team. He will continue to anchor the 5:30 and 6 p.m. newscasts but will no longer anchor at 11 p.m.

“You won’t see Lee on the WZZM 13 News at 11 p.m., but you will see Lee and his Watchdog team out in the community – demanding answers from our politicians, watching out for your best interests and making sure that your voice is heard,” news director Stanton Tang told Mlive.com.

Juliet Dragos will continue to anchor the 11 p.m. newscast. No co-anchor has been named.

Veteran Reporter Leaving WXYZ After 29 Years

Longtime WXYZ reporter Mary Conway is leaving the Detroit ABC-affiliate after 29 years. Conway, who has made her mark covering the auto industry over the past three decades, announced today that she is leaving WXYZ and moving to Colorado in order to be closer to family, including her new grandchildren.

“It’s been a remarkable ride, but it’s time for me to shift gears,” Conway said. “It’s an exciting time for me, but I’m going to miss the people who have been kind enough to invite me into their homes every night. They’ve really watched me grow up on the air here at 7 over the past thirty years.” Read more

WXYZ Adds Sports Anchor David Solano

WXYZ announced today that David Solano will be joining the Detroit ABC-affiliate in July as a weekend sports anchor and reporter.

Solano comes to Detroit from KIAH, the CW-affiliate in Houston.  Before KIAH, Solano spent three years working as the weekend sports anchor at WZZM in Grand Rapids.

“Fans in Detroit really know their sports,” Solano said. “I love storytelling, so being able to share the stories of pro, college and high school athletes with so many knowledgeable fans is really exciting. I have so much respect for WXYZ, and I’m honored to be a part of a station with so much tradition.” Read more

WZZM’s 1970s News Team Anchors Evening Newscast in Honor of Station’s 50th Anniversary

Grand Rapids ABC-affiliate WZZM is celebrating its 50th anniversary with a series of “retro newscasts.”

Last night, the station invited three on-air personalities from the 70s — anchor Barry Shanley, sportscaster Sam Hooks and weathercaster Craig James –  back to the anchor desk for the 5:30 and 6 p.m. newscast, which is still anchored by Lee Van Ameyde.

“I haven’t made a mistake here in 26 years,” Shanley joked. Watch Hooks’ sportscast and James’ forecast after the jump… Read more

Tim Geraghty Named News Director at Central Florida News 13

Tim Geraghty, who has been the news director at Sacramento’s KXTV for the past three years, is set to become the senior director of news at Central Florida News 13.

The Orlando-based cable news channel announced today that Geraghty will join its staff on March 19th.

“We are extremely pleased to have someone of Tim’s caliber joining News 13. We have a great newsroom and we expect it will become even greater under his leadership,” News 13 vice president and general manager Robin Smythe said, announcing the hiring. “Tim has a strong understanding of local news and has a track record of paying quality attention to his viewers and delivering them a relevant product.” Read more

Local Stations Bring Live Coverage Through the Night as Man’s Violent Rampage Rocks Grand Rapids

It was the deadliest shooting rampage ever to occur in Western Michigan. The havoc caused by Rodrick Dantzler on Thursday in Grand Rapids was so widespread that reporters had to specify that they were reporting live at just one of multiple crime scenes.

On Thursday afternoon, Dantzler, who has been described as having bipolar disorder, entered the homes of two former girlfriends, killing them both as well as others present in the houses at the time, including his own 12-year-old daughter. In all, Dantzler killed seven people in the span of a couple of hours and then led police on a car chase through Grand Rapids, eventually holing himself up in a house and taking three hostages.

WWMT, WXMI, WOOD, and WZZM all preempted their regularly scheduled programming on Thursday evening to bring live coverage of Dantzler’s rampage, which ended around 11:30 p.m. when the suspect shot himself.

Here’s a station-by-station breakdown of the local TV coverage… Read more

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