Management Shake Up in Toledo

A big management shake up has gone down at WNWO in Toledo.

WNWO brought in five employees, all from Fort Wayne’s Granite Broadcasting and they are taking over at WNWO.

Lead anchor Jim Blue will transfer his news director duties over the next 90 days to newcomer Nicole Hahn, currently in the newly created position of assistant news director.  Blue’s new title will be managing editor & lead anchor.  John Nizamis, one of the five employees from Fort Wayne, has been named general manager, replacing Chris Topf.

Nizamis, who has worked in television sales for 30 years, said that in a market of Toledo’s size it is rare to have a lead anchor also serve as news director.

“In a sense, most anchors have that managing editor responsibility,” Nizamis said.  “They’re really leading the charge on what they’re covering.  The news director is much more of a management position because you have to worry about hiring and firing.”

In other changes, Charity Freeman was named general sales manager, replacing Sena Mourad-Friedman.  Freeman served as the local sales manager for Granite, as well as an on-air local program host.  Two other positions have been added, including Jason Ashmawi, promotions manager, and Emma Ashmawi, digital content manager.  Both previously worked for Granite in producing and web content management, respectively.  Granite operates several Fort Wayne stations, including WPTA-21 (ABC), WISE-33 (NBC), Fort Wayne’s CW and MYTV Fort Wayne.

Nizamis realizes WNWO trails far behind in local ratings, but says the new faces are here to deliver more than numbers.

“It would be far too ambitious to say that we want to knock (Channels) 13 or 11 off the throne,” Nizamis said.  “As long as we’re fighting the good fight, we’re going to be in good shape here.  It goes beyond the ratings.  First of all, it is a business.  If we can increase ratings, we have an opportunity to increase revenue.

I’m trying to establish a new morale.  I want them to walk with a new swagger.  We want to be relevant.  This is a good product in a good market.”

Good luck with that.

H/T Toledo Free Press