New York Station Prepares for Shake Up

WPIX in New York has been without a permanent News Director since last Fall. 

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As FTVLive reported, new Tribune Boss Larry Wert has said that WPIX is his priority. And the folks in the WPIX newsroom are more than ready for something to happen.

The NY Daily News writes it’s about to get even sloppier at one of the worst TV newsrooms in New York.

It’s not looking good for interm news boss John Houseman - a longtime WPIX/Ch. 11 veteran who has been running the show since news director Bill Carey left last fall. Now there’s word that the top priority of the station's owners at Tribune is to find a new news director.

“Everyone is kind of relieved to know that something is going to happen,” the source says. “We’re in no man’s land here where no one has been saying anything.”

The source said the staffers plan to keep their heads down and try to offer the best broadcasts they can.

“Everyone seems to be just working under the assumption that a decision is going to be made soon, but there’s been no real buzz that I’ve heard regarding who that person might be.”

If the interim tag gets removed from Houseman’s business card, the source says staffers would rally around him: “I know that John has a good, solid working relationship with the team. I know that people are fond of him.”

Ch. 11 has never provided much competition for Fox 5 in the evening, and mornings have not been much better. WPIX did pull a rare summer ratings victory when WNYW’s Greg Kelly moved from “Good Day New York” to evening anchor.

Now that Kelly and Rosanna Scotto are back together in the mornings at Fox, WPIX has been forced into “catchup” mode, sources said.

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Also up in the air is WPIX’s evening newscast; there’s no word if Tamsen Fadal will be the station’s permanent lead anchor.

Fadal, who just marked five years at Ch. 11, has spent most of that time reporting or anchoring on the “PIX Morning News.”

“A lot of people are pulling for Tamsen. (She) has been in the business for a long time,” the source adds. “She’s a pro.”

A WPIX spokesperson said the station had nothing to report about potential changes at the top.

The source says Fadal deserves the promotion.

“She’s been doing a great job on the 5 and 10 p.m. (newscasts) so far and I think that’s the general sense.”

And the sense is that Fadal is ready to be named the face of WPIX news.

“If you’re not really happy doing something and if you’ve been in the business for a while, you tend to speak up,” the source says. “I would tend to think that she wants it, just because she’s been doing it for this long.”

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