Robservations on the media beat:
Two new co-hosts are joining Elliott Bambrough on “Chicago’s Best,” the weekly food magazine show on Tribune Broadcasting WGN-Channel 9. They are Marley Kayden, former weekend traffic anchor at NBC-owned WMAQ-Channel 5, and Lauren Scott, a feature reporter at KETV, the ABC affiliate in Omaha, Nebraska. Kayden, a graduate of Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism and the University of Virginia, previously worked for Bloomberg News and Wall Street Media. Scott, a native of Chicago’s South Side, is a graduate of Northern Illinois University. Starting in May, Kayden and Scott will succeed Brittney Payton, who left in January to become co-host of “Good Day Chicago” on Fox-owned WFLD-Channel 32. “Chicago’s Best” airs at 10 p.m. Sundays on WGN and replays during the week on WGN and CLTV.
“Showbiz Shelly” is back: Michelle Menaker, the North Shore native and Medill grad who brightened mornings as “Showbiz Shelly” for 13 years on Entercom Top 40 WBBM 96.3 FM, has landed at iHeartMedia Top 40 WKSC 103.5 FM. Starting today, she’ll host a two-hour midday show from 10 a.m. to noon and contribute to Kiss FM’s morning show, hosted by Christopher “Fred” Frederick and Angi Taylor. “Showbiz Shelly is a Chicago institution,” Matt Scarano, president of iHeartMedia Markets Group Chicago region, said in a statement. “Shelly is a true radio pro with tremendous Chicago roots, and I am honored that she chose to join the iHeartMedia Chicago team.” Kiss FM’s revised lineup: Fred & Angi from 5 to 10 a.m.; Showbiz Shelly from 10 a.m. to noon; Ryan Seacrest from noon to 3 p.m.; Brady Broski from 3 to 7 p.m.; Erik Zachary from 7 to 11 p.m.; and Jordan Foster from 11 p.m. to 5 a.m.
Jen DeSalvo, former traffic reporter for Cumulus Media classic hits WLS 94.7 FM and news/talk WLS 890 AM, is replacing Marley Kayden as weekend traffic anchor at NBC-owned WMAQ-Channel 5. DeSalvo has been filling in at NBC 5 since July. With degrees from Purdue University and Roosevelt University, she’s been on the air in Chicago since 2009. DeSalvo also co-hosted Tony Lossano’s “Nude Hippo” online video and podcast. “I’m a transit and infrastructure enthusiast, so it’s great to be able to translate my passion through the television screen after all these years of radio broadcasting,” she said.
Lynne Marek of Crain’s Chicago Business caught up with Sargent McCormick, the mystery man who’s buying Michael Ferro’s stake in Chicago Tribune parent company tronc. “There’s a need to have a solid newspaper in Chicago that can capture, reclaim its notions of truth and trustworthiness,” said McCormick, 35, a distant relative of former Tribune publisher Colonel Robert R. McCormick. Marek reported that Sargent McCormick expressed surprise that his comments might be used in a news report. “Earlier in the interview,” she wrote, “he said in a light-hearted tone that he was finding out, presumably because of the media interest swirling around his proposed tronc stake purchase, that reporters are like ‘spies.’”
Veteran broadcaster Jane Pauley, host of “CBS Sunday Morning,” will receive a distinguished journalist award today from DePaul University’s Center for Journalism Integrity & Excellence. Pauley was a news anchor at NBC 5 before she rose to stardom as co-host of “The Today Show.” Also honored will be DePaul alum Ann Pistone, longtime investigative producer for ABC-owned WLS-Channel 7. Carol Marin and Don Moseley, co-directors of the center, will present the awards at a luncheon at the Union League Club of Chicago.
Patti Blagojevich, wife of imprisoned former Governor Rod Blagojevich, will join “Beyond the Beltway” host Bruce DuMont for a full hour Sunday night. They’ll talk about her efforts to have President Trump commute her husband’s sentence. The U.S. Supreme Court last week rejected the latest legal maneuver to free the man known as Blago. The syndicated “Beyond the Beltway” airs live at 6 p.m. Sunday on WCGO 1590 AM, and 11 p.m. Sunday on WIND 560 AM. It’s on Sirius XM POTUS Channel 124, too. Video streams at beyondthebeltway.com.
Wednesday’s comment of the day: Nina D. Gaspich: Dear Mr. Feder: I am very disappointed that today’s column does not include an obit for Carl Kassel. Yes, he was mainly a “National” radio figure (as in National Public Radio), but he had a long stint here in Chicago as co-host (and prize offering on winners’ voicemails) at “Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me,” originating on WBEZ.