Surgery sidelines Score’s Terry Boers

Terry Boers and Dan Bernstein

Terry Boers and Dan Bernstein

As WSCR AM 670 rides the wave of its highest ratings ever, the CBS Radio sports/talk station is about to find itself without the services of veteran afternoon personality Terry Boers for a while.

Boers, 66, told listeners Wednesday that he will undergo surgery for an undisclosed ailment and expects to be off the air for “around two months.” His leave is effective immediately. Continue reading

Robservations: ABC 7’s Judy Hsu, Terrell Brown to anchor at 11 a.m.

Terrell Brown and Judy Hsu

Terrell Brown and Judy Hsu

Robservations on the media beat:

Judy Hsu and Terrell Brown, who co-anchor from 4:30 to 7 a.m. Monday through Friday on ABC-owned WLS-Channel 7, have been tapped to anchor ABC 7’s new 11 a.m. weekday newscast, starting June 27. They’ll be joined by meteorologist Tracy Butler on the new addition, which bumps “Windy City Live” to 1 p.m. “There’s no doubt our 11 a.m. newscast will be in very good hands with Judy, Terrell and Tracy at the helm along with our experienced production team,” Jennifer Graves, vice president and news director of ABC 7, said in a statement Wednesday. It’s a return to the time period for “Eyewitness News,” which dropped its 11 a.m. newscast, anchored by Linda Yu and Sylvia Perez, in 2013. Continue reading

Legendary TV exec Dennis Swanson retires

Dennis Swanson

Dennis Swanson

Dennis Swanson, a television industry giant credited with discovering Oprah Winfrey and catapulting ABC-owned WLS-Channel 7 to the top of the ratings, has called it a career.

“After 60 years in this business today will be my last,” he wrote to friends in an email Friday. He and his wife were in Africa with three of their grandchildren this week and could not be reached for comment. Continue reading

Robservations: Chicago Public Media adds in-house lawyer

Chicago Public Media

Chicago Public Media

Robservations on the media beat:

Cynthia Abbott

Cynthia Abbott

For more than two years WBEZ FM 91.5 listeners have been waiting for new programming from the Chicago Public Media station. Instead they’ve seen reductions in locally produced broadcast content, cancellation of several local podcasts and expansions in the company’s executive ranks. Latest addition is the hiring last week of Cynthia Abbott as vice president and general counsel, a newly created position. Until last December Abbott was senior legal director at Motorola Mobility. “Cindy is uniquely qualified not only to establish this new internal resource but equally to provide superb expertise in legal matters and strategic execution,” Goli Sheikholeslami, president and CEO of Chicago Public Media, said in a statement. “She is exceptionally prepared to take on this role, and is well-positioned to provide an immediate impact as we grow in the midst of a rapidly changing digital and media landscape.” Continue reading

Radio star Eric Ferguson survives WaveRunner explosion in Wisconsin

Eric Ferguson

Eric Ferguson

Eric Ferguson, Chicago’s top-rated morning personality, escaped serious injury Saturday when the WaveRunner personal water craft he was riding on a Wisconsin lake exploded, sending him 15 feet into the air.

Calling it a miracle he survived, Ferguson said he expects to be on the air Monday hosting his morning show on Hubbard Radio hot adult-contemporary WTMX FM 101.9 as usual. Continue reading

Robservations: WGN promotes reporter Mike Lowe

Mike Lowe

Mike Lowe

Robservations on the media beat:

Eighteen years ago Mike Lowe was working as an intern in the sports department of Tribune Media WGN-Channel 9. Today he’s a full-time general assignment reporter. Jennifer Lyons, news director of “Chicago’s Very Own,” confirmed Lowe’s new deal with the station (negotiated by agent Joel Weisman) after 15 months as a per diem reporter. Winner of 14 Chicago/Midwest Emmy Awards, Lowe previously was a reporter for WITI, the Fox affiliate in Milwaukee. A Chicago native and graduate of Loyola Academy and the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University, Lowe began as an intern at Window to the World Communications WTTW-Channel 11. Continue reading

Dan McNeil exits The Drive

Dan McNeil

Dan McNeil

Dan McNeil, the veteran Chicago sports radio host whose talent and temperament never quite meshed with a music station’s morning show, is out after 16 months at Hubbard Radio classic rock WDRV FM 97.1.

John Gallagher, vice president and market manager of Hubbard Radio Chicago, announced Thursday that McNeil had decided to step away from The Drive and had been released from his reported $250,000-a-year contract, which ran through March 2017. Terms of the settlement were not disclosed, but Gallagher said McNeil was free to accept employment elsewhere, effective immediately.

Continue reading

Robservations: Police hire Robin Robinson as special adviser

Robin Robinson

Robin Robinson

Robservations on the media beat:

Veteran Chicago news anchor Robin Robinson has been hired by the Chicago Police Department as special adviser to the superintendent for community affairs. Before accepting the position, Robinson stepped down from CBS Radio all-news WBBM AM 780/WCFS FM 105.9. “We wish her nothing but great success,” said Ron Gleason, director of news and programming at WBBM Newsradio. “We both agreed this would be a conflict with covering the news, and she has not been on the air for several weeks.” In announcing Robinson’s appointment, Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said: “Utilizing the trust she has built throughout the city during her career, she will serve as a departmental spokesperson and be responsible for fostering stronger community faith and partnerships in Chicago’s neighborhoods.” Robinson spent 27 years at Fox-owned WFLD-Channel 32. Continue reading