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Flint-Saginaw-Bay City

Meteorologist Mark Torregrossa Out at WEYI

Meteorologist Mark Torregrossa has parted ways with WEYI, the NBC affiliate in Flint.

Torregrossa, who has been WEYI’s chief meteorologist since 2003, confirmed to mlive.com that he is no longer at the station. WEYI declined to comment on the matter.

“We do not make comments on personnel changes, these changes and decisions are between the employee and the company,” the station’s statement reads. ”We are very pleased with our weather staff and product and we look forward to continuing to provide the most accurate weather to our viewers.”  Read more

WEYI Hires Assistant News Director

WEYI has hired Neille Giffune as assistant news director.

In April, WEYI’s owner, Barrington Broadcasting, tapped news director Kathy Reynolds to oversee sister station WNWO in Toledo, in addition to leading the news department at the Flint NBC-affiliate.  Giffune will assist Reynolds as she splits time between both stations.

“Neille Giffune is a competitor,” said Becky Butcher, president and CEO of WEYI and WBSF, announcing the hiring.  “She understands effective leadership and isn’t afraid to roll up her sleeves and pitch in to get the job done.” Read more

WEYI News Director Kathy Reynolds Tapped to Oversee Toledo Sister Station WNWO

Kathy Reynolds, who last June was named news director at WEYI in Flint, has been tapped to oversee the news department at Barrington Broadcasting sister station WNWO in Toledo.

In her new role as regional news director, Reynolds will split time between Michigan and Ohio.

“Kathy has proven that she has a strong sense of how a newscast should look, and feel,” Barrington president and CEO Becky Butcher said today in an email announcing the move.

WEYI is now searching for an assistant news director to help Reynolds when she is in Toledo. Read more

With Karen Gatlin’s Retirement Looming, WJRT Hires Former Anchor Dawn Jones Back

Veteran anchor Karen Gatlin (pictured) is retiring this Spring after 32 years at WJRT, and the Flint ABC-affiliate has hired a familiar face to replace her.

The new noon and 4 p.m. anchor will be Dawn Jones, who is returning to the station after two years out of the television business, according to mlive.com. Jones has been communications director for Flint mayor Dayne Walling since 2009.

“Dawn is just a wonderful person who’s so upbeat and positive,” WJRT news director Jayne Hodak said. “We’re glad she realized that the next chapter after the city is to come back home to us.”

Longtime WJRT Anchor Bill Harris Joins Rival WEYI

Longtime WJRT anchor Bill Harris is joining crosstown rival WEYI.

“Grab your remotes!” NBC-affiliate WEYI exclaimed, announcing the move.  “The face of Mid-Michigan news hasn’t changed, but the channel has.”

Harris spent over three decades anchoring the news for WJRT before being cut loose last spring.  He returned to the station to do occasional special reports last year, but officially said goodbye in December.

Harris will anchor WEYI’s 6 p.m. newscast.  His first day is set for January 30th. Read more

Bill Harris Leaves Michigan’s WJRT, For Good

Bill Harris, who returned to WJRT for “special projects” in May just one month after being let go by the new management team, says he is officially done with the Flint ABC-affiliate.

“My vision for what I want to do … didn’t mesh with [the work at] ABC12,” Harris told the Flint Journal. “It is hurting me deeply [but] the marriage wasn’t perfect. I really appreciated coming back.”

Harris says he is in talks with two rival WJRT rival stations: CBS-affiliate WNEM and NBC-affiliate WEYI. Though nothing official has been announced, the veteran anchor says he is interested in joining to anchor and work on special projects, perhaps as soon as January.

WNEM’s Story About a Congressman’s Alleged Sexual Abuse Began with a Letter From His Relative

The WNEM story that sparked a scandal involving U.S. congressman Dale Kildee this week began its life a year ago.

Last year, WNEM anchor Katie O’Mara received a letter.  It was from the sister of Patrick Kildee, the man who would eventually come forward and accuse Dale Kildee, his half cousin, of molesting him as an adolescent.  The letter disclosed a pattern of abuse by the congressman and O’Mara started investigating.

“It’s challenging for a main anchor with significant anchor duties to also pursue investigative reports,” WNEM news director Ian B. Rubin told TVSpy recently, “but Katie did so with energy and passion from start to finish.” Read more

WNEM Interview Embroils Longtime Congressman in Sexual Abuse Scandal

In a story that was six months in the making, WNEM aired an exclusive one-on-one interview this week with a man who accuses longtime U.S. congressman Dale Kildee of sexually molesting him 50 years ago.

The interview has grabbed national headlines as Kildee, who has served Michigan’s 5th congressional district since 1977, vehemently denies the allegations.

Patrick Kildee, the congressman’s second cousin, sat down with WNEM’s Katie O’Mara and graphically detailed a series of sexual encounters he says he had with Dale Kildee in 1964, when he was 15 and Dale was 35. Read more

6 Months After Being Cut Loose at WJRT, Joel Feick Joins WEYI As Morning Anchor

Joel Feick, a veteran anchor who was fired from Flint-ABC affiliate WJRT in April after 27 years, has joined rival station WEYI.

“I am excited to be working for a team that wants me and to get back to telling stories again,” Feick said in a statement. “It’s what I love to do.”

Feick was a casualty of station-wide downsizing after WJRT was acquired by SJL Broadcasting. He was weekend anchor at WJRT;  WEYI news director Kathy Reynolds calls mornings “a natural next step for him.”

Feick’s first broadcast was this morning. According to WEYI’s statement, he will be the newscast’s primary anchor, surrounded by an “ensemble cast.” Read more

WEYI’s Lost and Found Dog Story Will Make You Cry

WEYI‘s story of a lost pooch returned to its family is becoming a hit online for its good old-fashioned tug at the heartstrings.

WEYI reporter Jenny Suniga has the story (video above): a family in Clio, MI lost its maltese dog over a year ago following a car crash that killed two family members. Now the dog is being returned to the family and they’re taking it as a sign from heaven.

So far, the video has been posted on The Washington Post‘s blogpost and The Daily What.

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