Ash-har Quraishi joins Al Jazeera America

Ash-har Quraishi

Ash-har Quraishi

Ash-har Quraishi, former correspondent for WTTW-Channel 11′s “Chicago Tonight,” has been named Chicago correspondent for the new Al Jazeera America.

Quraishi, 38, joined the public television station part-time in 2010 and doubled as a staff reporter for the short-lived Chicago News Cooperative. He moved up to full-time status with “Chicago Tonight” the following year and also contributed to the “PBS NewsHour.” He previously served as chief investigative reporter for KCTV-TV in Kansas City, Mo., and as Islamabad bureau chief and correspondent for CNN. Quraishi was born in Chicago and graduated from Von Steuben High School and the University of Illinois.

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WBEZ bombshell: Torey Malatia resigns

Torey Malatia

Torey Malatia

Torey Malatia, a visionary public radio programmer and controversial leader who transformed WBEZ 91.5 FM in his 20 years with parent company Chicago Public Media, resigned Friday as president and chief executive officer.

Sources said Malatia, 61, met with the board of directors of the nonprofit institution Friday morning to finalize details of his departure. A WBEZ staff meeting has been called for 1 p.m. Friday, at which the official announcement is expected to be made.

Although the news was unexpected, Malatia’s relations with the board had become increasingly difficult in recent years, according to insiders. While a search for Malatia’s successor is under way, Alison Scholly, chief operating officer of Chicago Public Media, is expected to serve as interim CEO. Continue reading

Mora joins Al Jazeera America as host

Antonio Mora

Antonio Mora

Antonio Mora, the former Chicago television news anchor, has been hired by Al Jazeera America as host of “Consider This,” a Monday-through Friday night current affairs talk show.

The program debuts Aug. 20, coinciding with the launch of the cable news channel. Backed by the Bedouin oil billionaires of Qatar, Al Jazeera America will have access to 49 million households previously served by Current TV, which the new network acquired earlier this year. Continue reading

Refreshing Splash: Another Sun-Times makeover

Tuesday’s edition of the Chicago Sun-Times unveiled a redesigned weekday features section — all under the brand name of Splash.

Jim Kirk, publisher and editor-in-chief of the Sun-Times, said the move reinforces Splash as a franchise of the paper while eliminating the clutter of other features titles (including Pulse and Chatter). Sunday Splash, the Sun-Times’ stand-alone weekly magazine, incorporated additional entertainment features with the demise earlier this month of the Sunday Show section. Continue reading

Spanish shocker: Univision Radio fires ‘Piolin’

Eddie “Piolin” Sotelo

Eddie “Piolin” Sotelo

Chicago’s top-rated Spanish language radio personality was abruptly fired from his syndicated morning show — but no one who knows why is telling.

Eddie “Piolin” Sotelo, whose Univision Radio morning show aired on regional Mexican WOJO 105.1 FM in Chicago and more than 50 other stations nationwide, was pulled off the air effective immediately. No reason was cited for the cancellation, which was announced to his affiliates in a conference call Monday. Continue reading

Clear Channel to import My FM morning show

Despite promises that Clear Channel Chicago would launch a local morning show on its newly branded 93.9 MY FM, that doesn’t appear to be the case.

Paul “Cubby” Bryant, who hosts mornings on Clear Channel’s WKTU-FM in New York and also is heard on WMIA-FM in Miami, is expected to add WLIT 93.9 FM to his syndication lineup, sources said Sunday. Continue reading

Habermehl braces for unhappy landing

Kris Habermehl

Kris Habermehl

After nearly 20 years as Chicago television’s best-known eye in the sky, Kris Habermehl fears he’s about to be grounded by CBS 2.

The ace helicopter reporter, famous for hovering over traffic hot spots and deftly describing news scenes from his bird’s eye view, could be getting squeezed out over a change in the station’s chopper vendors. Continue reading

Tribune’s Monica Eng joining WBEZ

Monica Eng

Monica Eng

Chicago Tribune reporter Monica Eng is leaving newspaper journalism after 28 years to join Chicago Public Media WBEZ 91.5 FM as a producer and content provider. She starts at the public radio station Aug. 5.

Eng, 44, who most recently has been an investigative reporter specializing in food policy, nutrition, health, cooking, sustainability and consumer issues, joined the Tribune in 1996 after serving as entertainment editor of the Daily Southtown (now the SouthtownStar) and as a reporter and editorial assistant at the Sun-Times. Continue reading

Meteorologist Ivory joins WGN mornings

Demetrious Ivory

Demetrious Ivory

With the expansion of its weekday morning news block to six hours this fall, WGN-Channel 9 is beefing up its on-air weather staff.

Joining meteorologist Paul Konrad on “WGN Morning News” is Demetrius Ivory, who’ll sign on next month from WTAE-TV in Pittsburgh. Greg Caputo, news director of the Tribune Broadcasting station, confirmed the hire in an email to WGN staffers. Continue reading