Published on Thursday, 26 July 2012 15:14
Today's giant-sized News & Notes features 14 news items related to Chicago media, including: Kevin Manno's still around; Neil Parker comes back; WXRT looks back; Jack Silver's back to work; Clay Hunnicutt oversees Chicago's CC programming; Sarah Kustok prepares to leave; Stefan Holt prepares to wed; Me-Too & Antenna TV salute Sherman Hemsley; Chris Bury exits ABC News; Joel Daly takes to the stage; Larry Potash & Robin Baumgarten emcee a fundraiser; Wrapports/Sun-Times promotes a new General Counsel; and sad news for Tommy Williams. It can all be read right here...
* * Despite what was falsely written elsewhere, Kevin Manno is still very much an employee of Hubbard Radio Chicago, still a weekend personality with WTMX-FM, and still living in Chicago. An incorrect online report by a blogger last night claimed Manno was gone from the station and relocated to Los Angeles. The truth is Manno requested to take six weeks off to work on a still-secret media project in L.A., but will be coming back in Chicago in just a few weeks. Upon his return home, he will be back on the air on WTMX-FM/101.9 The Mix, as its newest weekend personality
and prime fill-in host. This has been confirmed to CRM by Hubbard Radio Chicago officials and Manno himself. Kevin Manno also recently hosted a segment on WMAQ-TV's "LX.TV 1st Look." That segment can be seen HERE
* * Neil Parker, who for 19 years (1976-1995) was news anchor and news director at WXRT-FM will make a return appearance delivering the news on 93XRT tomorrow morning. Regular morning news anchor Mary Dixon will be off and Parker is happily filling in. Said Parker today on Facebook
"My pals are nice enough to ask and it's an offer I can't refuse." Parker now owns and operates NPCommunications, LLC, a consulting & training firm for media relations and communications.
* * WXRT-FM began broadcasting in 1972. Ever since April
, the station has been doing monthly "XRT 4D Flashback Weekends" celebrating its 40 years of existence and success on Chicago's airwaves. This weekend, 93XRT will be doing its fourth & final "Flashback Weekend" salute. Starting Friday, WXRT-FM will "Flashback" to its recent past, as it celebrates "21st Century XRT." The station will be looking back at the music, news, and cultural events of the last twelve years. This will take place from Noon-7:00pm on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday -- a total of 21 hours of not-so-distant nostalgia.
* * Jack Silver, the WLUP-FM Program Director in the early 90's, has found new work. Today he was named as the Program Director of the new NBC Sports Radio Network. He will be based in Culver City, CA.
* * Clay Hunnicutt, Clear Channel Music + Entertainment's Senior Vice President Eastern Region & Vice President Country, has received a promotion and a new title this week. Hunnicutt is the new Executive Vice President of Programming. In this role, he will now be responsible for overseeing programming of all large markets, which includes, Clear Channel Chicago's cluster of six radio stations.
* * In what has been known for a while by co-workers, Comcast SportsNet Chicago's Sarah Kustok has been looking for opportunities outside of the Chicago market. After a personal family tragedy happened late last year
, Kustok was on the lookout for fresh surroundings elsewhere. She has now found that with a sports reporting job on the East Coast, which will be officially announced soon. Kustok informed her CSN Chicago bosses last week, and over this past weekend, informed the Chicago Blackhawks players and organization that she would be leaving as of August 3rd. Kustok began her media career as a sideline reporter for ESPN and joined CSN Chicago as a reporter in 2009. Recently, she has also been doing double duty, filling in as a sports anchor on sister-station WMAQ-TV/NBC 5 on Friday and Sunday nights. There is no word yet on a replacement for Kustok on CSN Chicago.
* * Best wishes to Stefan Holt! Fans will notice that Holt will be off the air for a short while from his duties as co-anchor WMAQ-TV's early morning newscast. There is a good reason why. Stefan Holt will be marrying his longtime girlfriend Morgan Gooch this weekend and then leaving on his honeymoon. Of course, Stefan Holt is the son of NBC News/MSNBC anchor Lester Holt, who spent over a dozen years in Chicago as an anchor for WBBM-TV.
* * Chicago's Me-Too will be airing a tribute to Sherman Hemsley, the famed television actor who passed away in his Texas home at the age of 74 on Tuesday. The tribute will begin at 11:00am with four episodes of his sitcom "Amen." That will be followed at 1:00pm with four episodes of "All In The Family," where his iconic character of George Jefferson was first started. Then at 3:00pm, Me-Too will air eight back-to-back episodes of "The Jeffersons," the sitcom that made Hemsley a TV superstar. In all there will be eight straight hours of Sherman Hemsley comedy shows on the station. Me-Too can be seen over the air on WCIU-TV channel 26.4, or via cable on Comcast Xfinity 247/358, RCN 22 & WOW 171.
* * Chicago-based classic television network, Antenna TV, will also be saluting the late Sherman Hemsley. The network does not have the rights to "The Jeffersons" or "Amen" currently, but will be showing three hours of "All in the Family" episodes which all prominently feature his character, George Jefferson. This will take place on Sunday evening from 8:00pm-11:00pm. Locally, Antenna TV airs on WGN-TV's digital sub-channel 9.2.
* * Chris Bury, the ABC News national correspondent, announced he is voluntarily exiting the company. Bury first joined ABC News in 1982. What makes this a Chicago media story is that for most of his career with ABC News, he has been based in Chicago. Bury is married to WBBM-AM news anchor, Catherine Catalane.
* * Former WLS-TV news anchor Joel Daly will be performing on stage next Tuesday evening. He will be taking part in the AFTRA/SAG Senior Radio Players presentation of "The Bum." Daly will play a character named "Welby." This will be part of a long show taking place on July 31st at 7:00pm (doors open at 6:00pm) the Claudia Cassidy Theater in the Chicago Cultural Center (78 E. Washington St., Chicago). The event is free to attend.
* * Also happening next Tuesday night will be the comedy stage production of "Corruption Isn't Funny... But Sometimes You Have to Laugh to Keep from Crying!" This live show is being put on by the Better Government Association, whose President & CEO is former WLS-TV/WMAQ-TV reporter Andy Shaw. The show will be a comedic take on recent news events as performed by The Onion Players. There will be a special guest appearance by IL Lt. Governor Sheila Simon, and the whole show will be hosted by WGN-TV's morning news anchor team of Larry Potash and Robin Baumgarten. The event will take place at Paris Club (59 W. Hubbard St., Chicago) starting at 6:00pm. Tickets to the fun fundraiser (or FUN-raiser) for the BGA Young Professionals Board can be purchased HERE
* * Wrapports, LLC, the parent company of Sun-Times Media, the Chicago Reader and other various other Chicago-based media and technology properties, announced that they have named a new General Counsel for the company and its many subsidiaries. Marielle V. Lifshitz has been named to that role as of today. Lifshitz has served as the interim General Counsel for Wrapports since April 2012 and previously was Assistant General Counsel at Sun-Times Media starting in 2006. Prior to joining Sun-Times Media, Lifshitz was a Partner in the Corporate Department at Gardner Carton & Douglas LLP (now Drinker Biddle LLP) in Chicago, IL for eight years, where she specialized in M&A, venture capital, corporate finance and securities law, as well as an Associate at McDermott Will and Emery for four years before that. Marielle V. Lifshitz replaces Jim McDonough, who exited this past spring.
* * Sincere condolences to Tommy "T-Dub" Williams on the recent loss of his Mother, Grace, at the age of 81. Williams is the former WSCR-AM/WMVP-AM personality and current sports anchor for northwest Indiana's Lakeshore Public Radio & Television.