The woman who brought “Windy City Live” to life is calling it quits.
Marlaine Selip is stepping down after four years as executive producer of the weekday morning talk show on WLS-Channel 7. Her last day at the ABC-owned station will be Friday.
“It’s time for me,” Selip, 67, said Wednesday. “I’m past retirement age and I’m ready to take a break. . . . It’s a hard job especially at this age, and I think it’s time for somebody else.”
No replacement has been named, but sources said supervising producer Cindy Patrasso is a strong candidate to succeed Selip. ABC 7 bosses are still at least two weeks away from making a decision, according to insiders.
Selip, a veteran of television talk formats since she produced Phil Donahue’s syndicated talk show in Chicago more than 30 years ago, launched “Windy City Live” in 2011 as a local replacement for “The Oprah Winfrey Show” at 9 a.m. weekdays on ABC 7. “I’m very proud of the team, and I’m very proud of what we were able to do,” she said. “This is such a great town. I’m glad we were able to showcase it in a positive way.”
Hosted by Valerie Warner and Ryan Chiaverini, the one-hour show moved to 11 a.m. weekdays in 2013, replacing a top-rated local newscast that had aired for decades. In an effort to retain viewers, “Windy City Live” added news to its entertainment mission. “I think that’s altered it a bit,” Selip said of her original vision for the show. “But that’s kind of what’s necessary at that hour for a station that’s so strong in the news field. I’ve been delighted to see how everybody’s grown and gotten so comfortable in their roles.”
Selip said her immediate plans are to travel to London and Paris for vacation, and then move back to New York, where most of her family lives. While she may take on a freelance assignment from time to time, there’s nothing else on her agenda.
“It’s hard to walk away because this has been so much fun,” she said. “Every day you meet interesting people, every day you get to know what’s going on in the world, every day you’re interacting with creative people. It’s been a really nice job.”