Fox 32 promotes Corey McPherrin to top news anchor

Corey McPherrin

Corey McPherrin, host of WFLD-Channel 32’s “Good Day Chicago” morning show, will move up to anchor the 5 and 9 p.m. weekday newscasts, the Fox-owned station announced Wednesday.

McPherrin, a suburban Chicago native and 22-year veteran of Fox 32, will succeed Jeff Herndon alongside co-anchor Dawn Hasbrouck. Herndon resigned after four years to return home to Kansas. His last day at the station was Tuesday. Continue reading

Robservations: Chicago radio unites for hurricane relief

Red Cross Texas Gulf Coast (Photo: Mark Bishop/DFW Red Cross)

Robservations on the media beat:

More than 30 Chicago area radio stations will team up today to promote relief efforts in communities ravaged by Hurricane Harvey. A one-minute commercial urging support for American Red Cross activities in Houston and the Gulf Coast will air simultaneously across AM and FM frequencies at 4:29 p.m. “We urge all Chicagoans to contribute to the relief efforts that are so desperately needed,” said Matt Scarano, chairman of Radio Broadcasters of Chicagoland, which is coordinating the broadcast roadblock. “We are using the power of radio in both English and Spanish to help out those in need.  In a time of crisis, Chicago radio is willing to help in any way we can.” Continue reading

Robservations: Mike North announces retirement from sports radio

Mike North (Photo: WTTW/Chicago Tonight)

Robservations on the media beat:

Critics may wonder whether he left the business or the business left him. Either way, Mike North has announced he’s quitting sports radio for good. It’s been 25 years since the high school dropout and former hot dog stand owner became one of the founding personalities at CBS Radio sports/talk WSCR AM 670. At his peak on the station he was making $1.5 million a year in addition to television and endorsement deals. North exited The Score in 2008, taking on various sports-related media ventures, including network and local radio, podcasting and a column in the Daily Herald. “I’m heading in another direction because I think the timing is right,” he told Phil Ponce Monday on WTTW-Channel 11’s “Chicago Tonight.” “I’m not leaving broadcasting. I’m leaving sports radio.” North, 65, said he plans to live part-time in Las Vegas and become a spokesman for Light Keeper Pro, a Glenview-based manufacturer of holiday light repair tools. Continue reading

Fighting cancer, Dave Fogel takes ‘little setback’ in stride

Dave Fogel

Chicago radio veteran Dave Fogel said he doesn’t expect his latest cancer treatment to interfere with his job as morning personality at WJMK FM 104.3.

Fogel, 56, underwent surgery for prostate cancer last February, missing only one day on the air at the CBS Radio classic hits station known as K-Hits. For the first few weeks he broadcast from the living room of his condo on the North Side. Continue reading

Robservations: Bears radio rights up for grabs

Soldier Field

Robservations on the media beat:

Bears Radio

After 18 years on CBS Radio all-news WBBM AM 780/WCFS FM 105.9, the Chicago Bears could be on the move. The team’s radio broadcast rights are up for grabs after the upcoming season, and insiders say WBBM Newsradio’s bid to secure a renewal may fall short this time. It’s been the voice of the Bears since 2000. Also in the running is Tribune Broadcasting news/talk WGN AM 720, which last aired Bears football in 1996. A new broadcast agreement — to start in the 2018 season — is expected to be announced in September. Continue reading

Fox 32 anchor’s lament: Isn’t it a shame?

Kristen Nicole

One of the most beautiful women on Chicago television is claiming to be the victim of “body shaming” after three viewers questioned what she’s been wearing on the air during her pregnancy.

Fox-owned WFLD-Channel 32 encourages its on-air staffers to engage viewers on social media. So when three of those viewers (identified as “Karen, Gene and Sabrina”) sent snarky emails Wednesday to Kristen Nicole about how tight her dresses are, the “Good Day Chicago” news anchor seized the moment. Continue reading

Robservations: Tom Skilling weeps at ‘life-changing’ eclipse

Tom Skilling (August 21, 2017)

Robservations on the media beat:

Television’s wall-to-wall coverage of the solar eclipse Monday combined a celebration and science lesson in a way viewers haven’t seen since the U.S. space program’s moon landings a generation ago. But in watching Tom Skilling weep at the sight of the celestial spectacle, you’d have to go back 80 years to the broadcast of the Hindenburg disaster to recall an outpouring of as much unabashed emotion by a reporter covering an event. Unlike Chicago radio newsman Herb Morrison’s plaintive wail at an unfolding catastrophe (“Oh, the humanity!”), there was the superstar meteorologist for Tribune Broadcasting WGN-Channel 9 crying tears of overwhelming joy at witnessing the solar phenomenon (“Path of Totality!”). Reporting from a beach in Carbondale, Illinois, Skilling said: “We’ve been told people start sobbing. For some, it’s just a life-changing event. We might start doing that too.” Then he did. And it was perfect. “For fans and even colleagues, it wasn’t just that we’d seen the eclipse,” wrote Jack M. Silverstein in a Chicago magazine blog post. “It was that we’d seen Skilling see the eclipse.” Continue reading

Tronc reassigns Jim Kirk after L.A. Times shakeup

Los Angeles Times

Former Chicago Sun-Times editor Jim Kirk has been named interim executive editor of the Los Angeles Times following a top-level shakeup at the newspaper by Chicago-based parent company tronc.

The surprise move comes just 10 days after Kirk resigned as publisher and editor-in-chief of the Sun-Times to become senior vice president of strategic initiatives for troncX, the digital content and commerce division of tronc. Continue reading