Posted 24 Dec 2010 — by Michigan Media
The Detroit News writes about Christy McDonald’s departure from WXYZ (Channel 7) in Detroit.
The first day of school this fall for Christy McDonald’s 6-year-old also was the day wind-whipped fire skittered across Detroit and scorched 85 buildings. McDonald had the standard list of questions for Caroline: How was it? Who are your friends? What did you think of the teacher? But she had to ask them over the phone from a WXYZ-TV truck on the east side, with sirens blaring in the background.
It’s never easy to balance kids and work, but it’s harder when your hours and whereabouts depend on whether power lines hold up in a stiff breeze or some crackhead decides it’s a good day to knock over a bank.
“Unpredictability,” McDonald said, “is not workable for me right now.” And that’s why, as of Wednesday, she no longer works for Channel 7.
It was a friendly parting from a dream job. The station graciously let her walk away from an anchor desk and go part-time five years ago, and she’ll always appreciate that. But now there are two more kids — to the ever-sensitive viewers who sent e-mails, yes, she wasgetting fat — and there’s no more part-time position.
The Detroit News
Posted 21 Dec 2010 — by Michigan Media
A WJBK (Fox 2) reporter was arrested at 3:30 A.M. on December 9 for drunk driving, according to hometownlife.com. The identity of the 34-year-old man was not released.
A 34-year-old West Bloomfield man, who is a Fox 2 news reporter, was arrested at about 3:30 a.m. Dec. 9 for drunk driving. Police noticed the man driving slowly behind the ABC Warehouse on Orchard Lake Road and went to investigate. The man told police he was waiting for his girlfriend, but later changed his story to say he was waiting for his wife. He then could not explain why he was behind a closed business at 3:30 a.m.
According to police, it was obvious the man had been drinking. He was asked to step out of the car and that’s when police noticed his pants were unzipped. He refused a preliminary breath test, but was later tested at the police station at .17 blood alcohol content.
Posted 13 Dec 2010 — by Michigan Media
Emmy Award-winning reporter Christy McDonald has decided to leave WXYZ in Detroit on December 21. McDonald’s decision comes as a result of the station’s insistence that she work full-time instead of part-time.
WXYZ-TV (Channel 7)’s Christy McDonald will be leaving the station Dec. 21, she said.
McDonald, who has worked at WXYZ for 10 years, told Names & Faces that station management would no longer let her work part time and instead wanted her as a full-time reporter.
“I love the station. I love this city,” she said. “It’s so painful to have to make this decision. But unfortunately, it’s not a life balance that works for me or my family right now.”
The Detroit Free Press
The Grand Traverse Insider writes about WPBN/WTOM Chief Meteorologist Mark Watkins.
It’s not difficult to notice when someone both enjoys and excels at their chosen path in life, and that is no exception with TV 7&4′s new Chief Meteorologist, Mark Watkins.
On the post for just about six months, Watkins has already managed to procure a solid and growing following with his new northern Michigan viewers – just as loyal as the many he left behind at his former tenure at WSOC TV in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Watkins, an Emmy Award-winning meteorologist, has been forecasting the weather for more than 20 years. He also had a head start, having grown up in the broadcasting business.
Grand Traverse Insider
The West Michigan radio landscape will change in January when Clear Channel simulcasts WOOD-AM (1300) on FM 106.9.
Clear Channel West Michigan is rolling out major changes to some of its local stations, the most significant of which will be making WOOD-AM (1300) news/talk radio both an AM and FM frequency next year.
The popular local news, traffic and weather station, providing the nation’s top four syndicated talk shows, will be aired simultaneously with identical programming on FM 106.9 starting in early January.
A specific date has yet to be announced.
Tim Feagan, Clear Channel West Michigan’s vice president and regional market manager, said the addition of its No. 4-ranked station to an FM frequency is giving its listeners greater access to the local news they covet, as many on the Lakeshore cannot access the frequency this time of year.
The Grand Rapids Press
Posted 11 Dec 2010 — by Michigan Media
Blind MSU journalism graduate Hope Springstead appeared on WLNS in Lansing alongside anchors Jane Aldrich and Evan Pinsonnault. Springstead wants to become the nation’s first blind news anchor.
For a few hours Friday, a dream came true.
Courtesy Lansing State Journal
Michigan State University journalism graduate Hope Springstead, who wants to become the nation’s first blind news anchor, appeared on Lansing’s WLNS-TV alongside anchors Jane Aldrich and Evan Pinsonnault.
It was part of the station’s annual Day of Giving fundraiser. It also was Springstead’s first shot at live news coverage and a chance to prove what she can do.
“It is a great chance to get some real experience,” said Springstead, who lives with her parents in Wyandotte. “It’s great to actually get some experience, rather than just talking about it.”
Springstead graduated from MSU in May with a dream of breaking into the competitive world of broadcast news.
Lansing State Journal
Is WZZM (ABC Ch. 13) in Grand Rapids planning to resurrect their weekend morning newscast? According to a job posting on WZZM’s web site, the station is planning to launch a new weekend newscast. Thank you to “Localnewsisdead” on the Michigan Radio & TV Buzzboard for pointing this out.
POSITION: TELEVISION PRODUCER
We’re looking for an aggressive, enterprising producer to launch our new weekend morning newscast! WZZM 13, the Gannett-owned ABC affiliate serving Greater Grand Rapids, Michigan is looking for a producer who must be able to build a compelling newscast, write well, lead others, as well as respond quickly to any breaking or developing news. You also must have the interest and ability to find additional elements to use on our new media properties. Non-linear editing experience strongly encouraged. A minimum of 2 years experience is preferred. EOE.
WZZM 13 Jobs
George Lilly talks about his purchase of ABC O&Os WJRT in Flint and WTVG in Toledo.
Buy low, sell high. George Lilly has been applying that basic business principle in the buying and selling stations since 1983.
In 2005, he partnered with the private equity firm The Blackstone Group to form Montecito Broadcast Group and purchased four stations from Emmis Communications for $259 million. Less than two years later, he flipped the stations to New Vision for a figure somewhere north of $330 million.
Now he thinks he can work that buy-low, sell-high formula at least one more time. Backed by Sankaty Advisors, a unit of Bain Capital, Lilly last month agreed to buy two small-market ABC O&Os — WJRT-TV Flint, Mich., and WTVG Toledo, Ohio — for $30 million.
With the worst of the recession apparently past and new sources of revenue beginning to materialize, Lilly believes the stations’ price tag is low and that he will be able to sell at a considerable markup several years from now.
Posted 06 Dec 2010 — by Michigan Media
Reporter Charlie LeDuff has joined WJBK (Fox 2) in Detroit after leaving The Detroit News in October.
High-profile multimedia reporter Charlie LeDuff, who left The Detroit News in October after two years, has joined Detroit Fox affiliate WJBK Ch. 2 to do on-air journalism.
“People that don’t read watch TV. People that do read watch TV,” he told me earlier tonight. His first report, a follow-up story on a previous Fox 2 piece he did on Detroit EMT problems, aired tonight on WJBK’s 10 p.m. newscast.
LeDuff did a joint Fox 2-Detroit News video and print package in September on problems with city’s ambulance service, which served as a sort of try-out for his new job. He’s also done video work for the Discovery Channel and the BBC. At The News, he hosted for a time a weekly web show, “Hold The Onions,” at Detroit’s American Coney Island during which he interviewed some of the region’s highest profile figures, such as Monica Conyers, Sam Riddle and L. Brooks Patterson.
“After a couple of days of doing this, I have a whole new respect for what these people do,” he said about his new TV gig.
Crain’s Detroit Business