It’s official: Dionne Miller is joining WLS-Channel 7 as weekend sports anchor — and the first woman on the ABC-owned station’s sports staff.
Confirming a report here earlier this month, ABC 7 announced Miller’s hiring Thursday in a memo to the staff. She starts Monday.
Miller, a native of Chardon, Ohio, and former host and reporter for Fox Sports Ohio and Big Ten Network, most recently was weekend sports anchor at Fox-owned WFLD-Channel 32. She signed off last month after more than two years at Fox 32.
“Dionne Miller has won over tough Chicago sports fans in the 2½ years she’s worked in this city,” said Jennifer Graves, vice president and news director of ABC 7. “She knows sports inside and out, is passionate about the teams she covers and has earned a great reputation in the market. We are thrilled she’s coming to ABC 7 and know she’ll make an already fantastic sports team with Mark Giangreco and Jim Rose even better.”
Giangreco, the station’s veteran sports director and No. 1 sports anchor, said: “We were so lucky to have the opportunity to hire such a personable and professional reporter/anchor from within our own market. It’s hard to find an established talent who is so well liked and respected by players, coaches, colleagues, competitors and of course, viewers. This is a great get for us!”
A graduate of Houghton College, a Christian liberal arts college in southwestern New York State, Miller worked earlier for WCMH-TV, the NBC affiliate in Columbus, Ohio, the Columbus Sports Network, WWSB-TV, the ABC affiliate in Sarasota, Florida, and XETV-TV, the Fox affiliate in San Diego. Miller’s husband, Ray Crawford, covers college football and basketball for Chicago-based Campus Insiders.
"Thrilled to begin an exciting new chapter," Miller tweeted Thursday night.
At ABC 7 Miller succeeds Rafer Weigel, who left to become a news anchor at KTVI-TV, the Fox affiliate in St. Louis. Weigel, son of the late Chicago sportscaster Tim Weigel, was a sports anchor for HLN’s “Morning Express with Robin Meade” when he auditioned to host “Windy City Live,” ABC 7’s local talk show. That job eventually went to Ryan Chiaverini, whom Weigel replaced as weekend sports anchor in March 2011.