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Kelly Frank Named President, GM of CBS News Stations in Philadephia

Frank will begin her new role in the Philadelphia market beginning April 4th. 

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CBS News affiliates in Philadelphia will have new leadership. CBS News has appointed Kelly Frank as the president and general manager of CBS News and Stations’ local businesses in Philadelphia, including KYW-TV (CBS 3), WPSG-TV (The CW Philly), the CBS News Philly streaming channel, and CBSPhilly.com.

“I am excited and deeply honored to have the opportunity to join CBS News and Stations at such a transformative time and work with the top-flight team at CBS Philly,” Frank said. 

“I love the rich history and diversity that exists in Philadelphia, both at KYW and in the community. I look forward to joining the team and embracing all that makes Philly so special.”

Frank is coming over from the CBS Television Network affiliate in Tampa, Fla., where she served as the director of content at WTSP-TV since 2018. She’ll begin her new role in the Philadelphia market beginning April 4th. 

“Kelly is a proven leader who is highly regarded by her peers, and she has done a terrific job of leading the news team at our CBS affiliate in Tampa, where they have grown their audience across all platforms,” Wendy McMahon, president, and co-head, CBS News and Stations, said. 

“We look forward to having Kelly draw on her wide range of experience as she helps us build on CBS Philly’s legacy of community service.”

Kelly will bring plenty of experience to her new position. Her career has made stops at CNN, working as an executive producer, a director of news and digital content at WBNS-TV, and the executive producer of evening news WTTG-TV in Washington, D.C.

“I have had the pleasure of knowing Kelly for almost my entire career, going back to when we worked together at WCMH in Columbus,” Roark said. “Kelly has established herself as an innovator who has successfully modernized and transformed the traditional broadcast news operation into a multiplatform content engine,” Adrienne Roark, president, CBS Stations, said.

“In addition to being a true journalist, Kelly is a tremendous coach, mentor and motivator. And above all, Kelly is someone who leads with empathy and supports her work family. Her wonderful combination of experience and heart will make her a great fit for our team in Philadelphia.”

News Television

Sinclair CEO Says Political Environment Is “Very Good for Our Business”

Sinclair’s CEO, Chris Ripley, offered his perspective on political ads at the MoffettNathanson 9th Annual Media and Communications Summit.

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The midterm elections are here, and according to one television executive, it’s the best time considering the amount of political advertisement money pouring into stations at the local and national. 

One key beneficiary of that cash inflow is Sinclair Broadcast Group, the No. 2 owner of local TV stations in the U.S. The company’s CEO, Chris Ripley, offered his perspective on political ads at the MoffettNathanson 9th Annual Media and Communications Summit.

“Some of these primary races are crazy,” Ripley said, per Deadline. “On the one hand, I lament that we’re in the political environment that we are. On the other hand, it’s very good for our business.”

Ripley used an example to make a point with his claim, citing U.S. Senate candidate J.D. Vance who won his primary race after spending a heavy amount ont television ads. 

Furthermore, the television executive adds that the $75 million spent on TV ads for the primary was 40 times more than what was spent on the primary in the last election. Ripley also added that spending on ballots is also up and should continue to increase as issues like abortion and legal gambling arise. 

“More and more issues are going on direct ballots,” he said. “With what’s going on with abortion rights, that’s going to just even add to that category.” Legalizing sports betting or cannabis are other issues generating significant ad spending.

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News Television

NBC News Correspondent Pete Williams to Retire

Williams will remain with NBC News through July before calling it a career. 

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NBC News

NBC News has announced Justice Department and Supreme Court correspondent Pete Williams will be retiring from the company. The reporter has been with the network for nearly three decades and has been at the forefront of many breaking news stories in Washington, DC. 

“Pete has been one of the nation’s foremost authorities covering the Supreme Court and the Department of Justice for nearly three decades,” NBC News President Noah Oppenheim said in a memo to staff

“His career has been defined by his reputation for accuracy, reliability, and unmatched expertise in the subjects he covers.” 

Williams has covered various topics for NBC News, including the court cases dealing with the Affordable Care Act and marriage equality. Earlier this year, the correspondent was the one who reported the news that Supreme Court Justice Stephen G. Breyer would retire at the end of the current term.

“In short, for generations of NBC News reporters, working alongside Pete has been a daily masterclass in journalism. But perhaps more importantly, it has been a masterclass in what it means to be a good colleague,” Oppenheim added.

“Pete’s decency, kindness, and generosity are unmatched. For those that know Pete well, it’s his warmth, humor, wit, and compassion that will be missed most.”

Williams will remain with NBC News through July before calling it a career. 

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News Television

Chris Licht: CNN Must Be Beacon of Journalism to Functional Democracy

“Now, the next chapter of CNN is one where we aspire to be a beacon for the kind of journalism essential to a functioning democracy,” Licht said

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CNN’s new president Chris Licht shed some light on the direction he plans to take the company at the Warner Bros. Discovery upfront. 

Licht spoke at the presentation alongside Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav, who expressed that CNN will be organized “to advocate for journalism first” and deliver for viewers “seeking more accurate information and less yelling and conflict.”

Furthermore, Licht proposed similar aspirations as he summarized his plan for the cable news channel to double down on what many might call sane news. 

“Now, the next chapter of CNN is one where we aspire to be a beacon for the kind of journalism essential to a functioning democracy,” Licht said, per Mediaite.

“In a time where extremes are dominating cable news, we will seek to go a different way — reflecting the real lives of our viewers and elevating the way America and the world views this medium.”

The new CNN president also vows to “challenge the traditional philosophy of cable news, delivering programming and commentary that questions the status quo, shatters group-think, holds our leaders on both sides of the aisle accountable to facts, and fights fearlessly to get to the truth.”

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