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Ch.4 Names New “Wake Up!” Anchor

Channel 4 has named Joe Arena’s replacement on “Wake Up!”

A few days ago, I mentioned the station had interviewed an anchor from Texas for the job.

Now word comes that Channel 4 News Director Joe Schlaerth has told the station’s staff that the anchor, Jordan Williams, will join the CBS affiliate in January as a morning anchor and an investigative reporter.

It is hard to see how a morning anchor can have enough time to be an investigative reporter but that’s TV news these days.

In an email to the staff, Schlaerth wrote that Williams has worked in Oklahoma City and Texas and he was part of a morning team that has won three Emmys in three years at a smaller Texas station competing against stations in Dallas.

For the last four years, Williams has been at KRGV, the ABC affiliate in Rio Grande Valley, Texas. He has been a co-anchor in the morning for the past two years. He came to the station after working in Oklahoma, City, Midland, Texas and San Antonio, Texas.

Jordan Williams: New Ch.4 Anchor

According to the KRGV website, Williams has won 10 first-place awards from the Texas Associated Press Broadcasters. Wrote Schlaerth: “He is described as a newsroom leader with a drive to win.”

It won’t be easy to win here since “Wake Up” is now well behind Channel 2’s “Daybreak” in the morning news wars.

Williams will be replacing Ed Drantch, who co-anchored “Wake Up” during the November sweeps after Arena left for Pittsburgh. Drantch, who was teamed with Nalina Shapiro, will remain a reporter. There is no word on whether Shapiro will be Williams’ co-anchor or if the station is looking to replace her as well. It would be a good idea.

On Friday, I noted that while Channel 2 “Daybreak” co-anchor Jodi Johnston got a three-day send-off, Channel 7 anchor Keith Radford quietly celebrated his 25th anniversary at the station. On Friday, the station celebrated Radford’s milestone at the end of the 6 p.m. newscast by delivering a cake on set. I think Radford wanted a pie.

Asked by co-anchor Joanna Pasceri if he had anything to say to viewers, Radford said: “Thank you and I apologize if I have offended anyone. And I’m sure I have from time to time. I’ll try not to in the future.”

No apologies necessary Keith.

As I wrote Friday, you can pick up a copy of the December issue of Buffalo Spree to read my profile on Radford.

Channel 2′s owner, Gannett, and DirecTV reached a national agreement that means that the local subscribers to the satellite carrier will continue to get NBC programming and the station’s local newscasts without a rabbit ears antenna or an outside antenna.  In other words, it was just another case of crying wolf.


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6 responses to "Ch.4 Names New “Wake Up!” Anchor"

  1. Bill J. says:

    If they do not replace Shapiro as the co-anchor, no matter how much of a pro Williams is, she will drag him down. They were much better off with Guggenmos doing the job

    • Tina says:

      Totally agree. Guggenmos is much better, actually even better than her husband.

      • Yes, Emily’s the better anchor– but the problem may be scheduling. With her husband on weekend evenings and her on weekday mornings, that may very well be a very difficult swing for a young couple. It’s been done; the best example being Aaron Mentkowski and Sharon Osorio at channel 7, even going so far as to let Sharon, the evening reporter, go when Aaron moved to evenings. However, it’s not an ideal situation.

        Nalina just may be lucking out from circumstance.

      • Andrew says:

        I think Shapiro does a decent job, plus she is easy on the eyes which helps with the usual boring news that needs to be delivered.

  2. Tom W. says:

    Absolutely agree that Guggenmos should have gotten the job. The weekend stint between the time Mylous Hairston left and when Lou Raguse took over was proof enough to show that she should just stick to reporting.

    Ed Drantch is ok, but definitely a better reporter.

  3. Tom W. says:

    I found a clip of Jordan’s earlier work here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KymlTiHvp_Y

    He actually seems to be similar to Michael Wooten, who anchors Daybreak on the weekends over at Ch 2. This may help Wake Up a bit. But, if Schlaerth and company continue to insist that Nalina is the right co-anchor for the job, then I don’t see how it will be possible in the near future to come close to overtaking 2 in the mornings.

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