Robservations: Illinois Broadcasters Hall of Fame honors Bill Plante

Bill Plante (Photo: Jeff Burnett)

Robservations on the media beat:

Tom Skilling

The great Bill Plante, who covered five presidents as CBS News senior White House correspondent, was inducted Wednesday in the Illinois Broadcasters Association Hall of Fame. The Chicago native and graduate of Loyola University retired after 52 years at the network in 2016. As the 60th inductee in the Hall of Fame, Plante was introduced by his stepson, syndicated radio talk show host Chris Plante. Also honored at the IBA convention in Normal, Illinois, was Tom Skilling, legendary chief meteorologist for Tribune Broadcasting WGN-Channel 9, who received the group’s Broadcast Pioneer Award.

Linze Rice

Linze Rice, a reporter/producer who covered Chicago’s Far North Side Rogers Park/Edgewater neighborhoods for DNAinfo.com Chicago, has founded her own communications firm. Pink House Media will specialize in writing and pitching inspirational stories, along with developing editorial and social content and photography. “I want to help uplift the stories of people working hard to make positive change,” she said. Rice, who most recently worked as content strategist for River Strategies, also will teach journalism this fall at Loyola University and contribute to the digital news startup Block Club Chicago.

Steve Kashul

Billed as the longest running golf series in the country, “The Golf Scene TV Show” marks the start of its 25th season this weekend on NBC Sports Chicago. Returning to primetime at 6 p.m. Sundays, it has been hosted since the beginning by veteran sportscaster Steve Kashul. “We are quite proud of the accomplishment,” Kashul said of the milestone. The show spotlights courses, new equipment and technology, tips from pros and interviews with player.

Michael Ferro

It’s been quite a week for Chicago media figures coming back after premature sendoffs. First there was Rich “Svengoolie” Koz, who announced he was still alive after Howard Stern inexplicably reporting his passing. Then came news that Michael Ferro hasn’t left tronc after all. The former chairman terminated the $208.6 million deal to sell his 25 percent share in the company to McCormick Media, according to an SEC filing. McCormick Media, a previously unknown entity fronted by a distant relation to former Chicago Tribune publisher Colonel Robert R. McCormick, was unable to secure financing. That means Ferro remains onboard as tronc’s largest shareholder — at least for the time being.

Wednesday’s comment of the day: Fred Dreger: Until about 3 or 4 years ago, WGN was all I listened to from dawn to dusk. Then somewhere along the line they decided that my demographic was no longer relevant and fired most of their talent including Kathy & Judy, Cubs, etc. I’ve tuned them out and haven’t looked back. They deserve to be where they are today.