Robservations on the media beat:
Chris Tye, who grew up in the west suburbs and began his career as a high school and college intern at four Chicago radio stations, is coming home to join CBS-owned WBBM-Channel 2 as a reporter, starting next month. “It happens to be the first TV station I ever remember watching as a young boy,” he recalled. “They had an exceptionally great theme song when Bill Kurtis and Walter Jacobson were the main anchors there.” Until earlier this year Tye spent 15 years as a reporter and fill-in news anchor at WKYC, the NBC affiliate in Cleveland. A graduate of Oak Park and River Forest High School and John Carroll University, he previously worked for stations in Traverse City and Grand Rapids, Michigan.
Erik Zachary is stepping down as evening personality at iHeartMedia Top 40 WKSC 103.5-FM. Tonight will be his last show on Kiss FM. “I have nothing but appreciation for the opportunities that iHeart has afforded me in my 7-plus years on the air, and look forward to seeing the continued success of the amazing team at Kiss FM,” he said. “With that said, I’m excited to shift the full focus of my work to the television and digital video space.” Zachary, whose TV credits include MTV Network’s “Total Request Live,” grew up in northwest suburban Bartlett and attended Columbia College. He began as a programming intern and promotions assistant for iHeartMedia Chicago, and hosted evenings on country WEBG 95.5-FM before moving to Kiss FM in 2016.
When “Windy City Live” kicks off its ninth season Tuesday, viewers will see a new set and they’ll hear a new voice behind the scenes. Virginia Hamilton, the Los Angeles-based voice-over artist (who’s also heard on ABC’s “The View”), has been added as official announcer for the locally produced talk and entertainment show. Val Warner and Ryan Chiaverini return as hosts of “Windy City Live,” which airs weekdays at 1 p.m. and rebroadcasts at 12:05 a.m. on ABC-owned WLS-Channel 7.
It’s been only a year since veteran Chicago radio producer Scott Miller signed on as afternoon host at WJBC, the Cumulus Media news/talk station in Bloomington/Normal. Now he just moved up to mornings. Under a new multiyear deal with the station, Miller will be reunited with news director and morning news anchor Katherine Murphy, with whom he worked at the former FM News 101.1. “I have never felt more a part of a community than I do here,” he said. “And the Central Illinois pork tenderloins are the size of my head. WIN WIN!” Miller also worked as a producer for Oprah Radio, Tribune Broadcasting news/talk WGN 720-AM and Hubbard Radio classic rock WDRV 97.1-FM.
Sam Roe, Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter for the Chicago Tribune, has joined the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel to lead the investigative reporting efforts of the Journal Sentinel and USA Today Network-Wisconsin. By all accounts it’s a big loss for the Tribune. “Now, more than ever, we need to fight the good fight, produce spectacular work, and demonstrate to the public that great reporting is essential to every one of us,” Roe told his new colleagues. With degrees from Kent State University and Columbia University, he also has been teaching investigative reporting at Columbia College Chicago.
Tonight marks the premiere of “CJA News,” a 30-minute lifestyle show produced by aspiring broadcasters under the guidance of local professionals and the Chicago Journalists Association. Five student journalists were mentored on the project by CBS 2 news anchor and reporter Suzanne Le Mignot, Business Wire media relations specialist Courtney Sturgeon, and China Star News anchor Faye Yu. “The mission of ‘CJA News’ is to develop both front-of-the-camera and behind-the-camera broadcast news skills, while instilling greater confidence and passion for journalism, and increase citywide exposure to the CJA brand,” said Maudlyne Ihejirika, president of the nonprofit group. The show will air at 9:30 p.m. on Chicago Cable Channel 25.
Thursday’s comment of the day: Dan Miller: Lauren Magiera has charisma, presence and credibility in athletics, as a reporter and athlete. Looking forward to her upcoming special and beyond.