Robservations: WGN in talks on Dan Roan’s retirement; Telemundo’s stolen news van recovered; Natasha Korecki joins NBC News

Dan Roan

Robservations on the media beat:

On second thought, let’s not plan that retirement party for Dan Roan quite yet. In a late July interview for the folks back home in Keokuk, Iowa, the veteran sports anchor at WGN-Channel 9 told the Fort Madison Daily Democrat that he would be retiring in February, adding: “That’s pretty much going to be the end of it.” But when those comments surfaced here Monday, they came as a surprise to many at the Nexstar Media station. “Dan is an icon in Chicago television, with a tremendous impact on WGN for nearly 40 years,” WGN news director Dominick Stasi told me. “We have had several discussions as Dan starts to look at the next chapter in his life. He has an eye on retiring sometime in 2022, but no exact date has been set.” Roan, 68, who began his career at WCIA, the CBS affiliate in Champaign, and joined WGN as sports director and sports anchor in 1984, preferred to let his bosses do the talking Monday.

Telemundo Chicago

Police have recovered a news van used by Telemundo Chicago WSNS-Channel 44 that was stolen off the street in Chicago’s Gold Coast neighborhood last week. Sources confirmed the incident occurred Wednesday afternoon just outside 200 East Chestnut Street. Following a reporter’s live shot, a Telemundo Chicago photographer left the van’s motor running as he was packing up his gear. That’s when the vehicle was stolen, sources said. No comment from officials of NBCUniversal, parent company of Telemundo Chicago and NBC-owned WMAQ-Channel 5.

Natasha Korecki

Natasha Korecki, once a star reporter for the Sun-Times and the Daily Herald, has been hired by NBC News as senior national political reporter. She’ll continue to be based in Chicago, where she most recently has been working for Politico. “I’m so thrilled to join the NBC team,” Korecki tweeted. “Of course this moment is bittersweet. It’s been one heck of an adventure at Politico and many of my colleagues are now like family to me.” A University of Illinois graduate, Korecki joined Politico in 2015 after 12 years at the Sun-Times and seven years at the Daily Herald. She wrote the daily Politico Playbook on Illinois politics before being named national correspondent in 2018 and White House correspondent last January.

DeDe McGuire

DeDe McGuire, best known to listeners here as former co-host alongside the late, legendary Doug Banks, is bringing her own Dallas-based syndicated morning show to Chicago. Starting January 3, “DeDe in the Morning” will air from 5 to 9 a.m. weekdays on WPWX 92.3-FM, the Crawford Broadcasting hip-hop station. “We’re so excited to have DeDe wake up Chicago on Power 92, her whole vibe and feel is what the city and morning radio has been missing,” program director Jay Alan said in a statement. “Plus, she’s a woman and we all know that women run the world.”

AccuRadio

AccuRadio, the free, Chicago-based online music streaming service, plans to offer 100 channels of holiday season music leading up to Christmas. That’ll top last year’s total of 81 channels. “Will it be challenging for us to get to 100 stations? Absolutely,” said Kurt Hanson, founder and CEO of Accuradio. “We’ve never done this before for any of our genres. We’re going to have to think outside the (gift) box. But our listeners love us year-round because we offer them an incredible array of music channels for every taste and setting, whether it’s the work day, socializing or chill time. For the holidays we wanted to do something really special, even if it means we have to spend more time in our record library creating playlists instead of baking cookies or drinking glögg.”

Monday’s comment of the day: Judy Bernier: Why would WGN 720 not cover the Dan Hampton story is beyond me. It is Dan Hampton’s bad. Now it has become WGN’s bad. Selective reporting just proves some media can’t be trusted.