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West Palm Beach-Fort Pierce

Sports Anchor Josh Samuels Leaving WPEC

Josh Samuels, the weekend sports anchor at WPEC, is leaving the West Palm Beach CBS affiliate.

“I do not agree with the direction that the station wants to take the sports department and decided it was best for me to pursue other opportunities,” Samuels told TVSpy in an email.

Samuels joined WPEC in 2008 after five years as the sports director at WICD in Champaign, Ill. Before that, he was sports director at KREX in Grand Junction, Colo.

NBC Affiliates Post Story About Ann Curry’s Struggles with the Mothership

In what may be more of a sign of the times than a break with protocol, at least two NBC affiliates have posted the recent story about former “Today Show” co-anchor Ann Curry allegedly begging to be let out of her NBC contract so she can work for her old boss Jeff Zucker at CNN.

Spokane NBC Affiliate KHQ posted a version of the story attributed to British publication the Daily Mail (click here to view). While the story on the website of West Palm Beach NBC affiliate WPTV (click here to view) has a byline from the station’s online content producer.

Steven Wasserman, vice president and general manager of WPTV told TVSpy, “I suspect this story will be on our air tonight on “ET” or “The Insider”. Why wouldn’t we put it on our website?  I don’t think it’s a good idea to not run a legit, talk about story just because it has to do with our network.”

You can view screen grabs of the stories after the jump. Read more

South Florida Anchors Join in Holiday Fun

The South Florida Sun Sentinel recruited celebrities including local news anchors from around South Florida to read “Twas The Night Before Christmas” in a video mash-up.

Included in on the holiday fun were Adam Kuperstein and Jackie Nespral from NBC owned WTVJ, Laurie Jennings and Calvin Hughes from Miami ABC affiliate WPLG, Belkys Nerey and Craig Stevens from Miami FOX affiliate WSVN along with John Discepolo and Liz Quirantes from CBS affiliate WPEC in West Palm Beach.

The video also featured players from the NFL’s Miami Dolphins and the NBA’s Miami Heat and even fight promoter Don King. Watch the video after the jump. Read more

Sports Reporter Jason Pugh Joins WRC

Jason Pugh is joining WRC in Washington, DC as a sports reporter, general manager Jackie Bradford announced this morning.

Pugh comes from West Palm Beach, where he was a sports anchor and feature reporter at WPTV-WFLX. He also works for ESPN 760 radio, where he hosts three shows and provides play-by-play for games.

Pugh replaces Hakem Dermish, who left WRC for ESPN in April, at the NBC O&O. His first day will be December 10.

Emily Pantelides To Leave WPEC

A little more than a month after being moved to the WPEC weekend morning anchor desk from weekday mornings, Emily Pantelides has announced she will be leaving the station.

Gossip Extra first reported the news, getting ‘no comments’ from both Pantelides and station management,

“I’m contractually obligated not to comment,” the pint-sized personality (Pantelides) said when asked about her imminent departure.

News director Cathy Younkin emailed a comment this am: “Nothing is confirmed. So there’s no comment.” Read more

West Palm Beach’s WPEC Shakes Up Anchor Lineup

There are changes in store at West Palm Beach CBS affiliate WPEC following the hire of John Discepolo.

Discepolo will be paired with Liz Quirantes for the evening newscasts. Suzanne Boyd and Eric Roby, the station’s current evening anchors, will move to mornings, according to Gossip Extra’s Jose Lambiet.

Boyd and Roby displace Emily Pantelides and Juan Carlos Fanjul on the morning newscast. Pantelides will move to the weekend morning anchor desk, and Fanjul will move to weekend evenings, Lambiet reports.

Weekend evening anchor Ben Becker will anchor the weekday 7 p.m. newscast solo.

John Discepolo Set to Join WPEC in West Palm Beach

John Discepolo begins next week as the primary anchor at WPEC, the CBS affiliate in West Palm Beach.

“This is an incredible opportunity that came my way, and one that I could not pass up,” Discepolo told TVSpy.

Discepolo comes from KOMO, the ABC affiliate in Seattle, where he has been a weekend anchor and weekday reporter since 2010. Prior to his time in Seattle, Discepolo also worked at WCBS and WNYW in New York and KDFW in Dallas.

At WPEC, Discepolo will anchor the 6 and 11 p.m. newscasts alongside Liz Quirantes. His first broadcast will be September 24. Read more

Paige Harrison Named News Director at WPBF

Paige Harrison is joining WPBF as news director.  Harrison comes to the West Palm Beach ABC affiliate from WTAE in Pittsburgh where she was assistant news director.

“It’s a tremendous opportunity to return to Florida and join the area’s most talented and hard-working local news team,” said Harrison. “WPBF 25 has seen historic ratings growth, and I look forward to further strengthening our commitment to the South Florida viewers.”

Harrison, who moves from one Hearst station to another, fills the empty chair vacated by Kyle Grimes’ promotion to president and general manager of Hearst Stations WPTZ-WNNE in Plattsburgh-Burlington.

Read more

Lloyd Bucher Named Station Manager at WPTV

Lloyd Bucher has been appointed station manager at WPTV, Scripps’ NBC-affiliate in West Palm Beach.

Bucher has been the director of sales at WPTV for more than five years. He steps into his new role after Steve Wasserman, WPTV’s general manager, was named as one of Scripps’ three divisional general managers. Wasserman will continue as the WPTV GM.

Wasserman said in a statement that Bucher will “help ensure that we stay focused on the station’s goals and strategic plan.” Read more

WPBF’s Victor Blackwell Named Weekend Morning Anchor at CNN

Victor Blackwell is joining CNN as an Atlanta-based anchor and correspondent, the network’s executive vice president Ken Jautz announced today. Blackwell will co-host “CNN Newsroom” on Saturday mornings alongside Randi Kaye.

Blackwell joins CNN from WPBF, the ABC-affiliate for West Palm Beach, where he anchors the 5, 6 and 11 p.m. newscasts alongside Tiffany Kenney. Prior to that, he worked at WLTV-WJXX in Jacksonville.

“Victor is a passionate and committed journalist,” Jautz said in a statement announcing the hire. “He will be a strong addition to our weekend morning team and in the field.”

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