Remembering the past... looking toward the future!

Buffalo Broadcasting News

In a move announced this morning by President & General Manager Jim Toellner, Adam Benigni will replace John Beard as co-anchor of Daybreak beginning in January 2018. Beard is scheduled to retire at the end of the year.

Benigni, who has been with the station since 1997, served as the station’s Sports Director after Ed Kilgore’s retirement in 2013. Earlier this year, Benigni temporarily filled in at the anchor desk after Scott Levin left the station. He moved away from that temporary role in September 2017.

In an announcement made on Monday by General Manager Jim Toellner, longtime Executive Producer Athan Kompos has been named News Director at WGRZ-TV. Kompos was most recently Acting News Director after Kate Glover’s departure in June. The Buffalo native and Canisius graduate has been with the station since 2004 and was promoted to the Executive Producer role in 2009.

Sports anchor/reporter Tom Martin made it official yesterday and announced that he is leaving Buffalo for Kansas City. He will take over as a weekend sports anchor/reporter for KCTV-TV after two years in Buffalo. Martin came to Buffalo two years ago as WIVB-TV was revamping their entire sports department following the departures of Lauren Brill and Steve Vesey. Before Buffalo, the Mizzou grad worked at KATC-TV and KOMU-TV. He will start at the new station sometime in September.

Martin was also a four-time participant and guest speaker for the Buffalo Broadcasters Association’s Peer 2 Peer Speakers Tour. The initiative strives to connect the rising stars of the industry with students that might be interested in pursuing a career in broadcasting at local colleges and universities.

Fun fact, this is also where former WIVB-TV News Director Scott Levy went to take a new opportunity as well.

In a video announcement this morning on his personal Facebook page, Scott Levin announced that he is returning to WGRZ-TV alongside Maryalice Demler at the anchor desk.

Levin, who left the station in May, took a position with West Herr as a Finance Manager. In the video, Levin mentioned that sitting out on the coverage of the tornadoes that affected areas in Hamburg, Holland, and Angelica, made him miss being at the desk.

The story on WGRZ’s website confirms that he will return to the airwaves in early September.

 

Since the start of 2017, three local websites have popped up from current/former broadcasters in the Buffalo area. Each have a unique perspective on what they cover and are all good reads!

Former WGRZ-TV anchor/reporter Mary Friona has started Totally Buffalo, a blog/webpage dedicated to all things Buffalo! The site features updates on local happenings, stories about the people of WNY, breaking news, and much more. Friona is also launching a part of the website called Totally Niagara Falls, which covers her hometown and the community that we all treasure and value. The link to her site can be found here (https://www.totallybuffalo.com/).

 

The Cheektowaga Chronicle is a locally owned, independent, online news publication run by former WKBW-TV and WGRZ-TV photojournalist Jim Herr. The site covers the news around Cheektowaga and dives into investigative reports that affect the community. Herr is a lifelong resident of Cheektowaga and also is a member of the Pine Hill Drum and Bugle Corps, where he’s also served as President of the organization for the past four years. The link to his site can be found here (http://cheektowagachronicle.com/).

Finally, the most recent debut of the trio is Buffalo Sports Page run by Kevin Sylvester and Paul Peck. The site features covers the Buffalo Bills, Buffalo Sabres, Buffalo Bulls, baseball, and golf. The duo are also hosting a radio show of the sports page on WECK-AM/FM on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. and Sundays during football season from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. The list of contributors to the site include UB Athletics Broadcaster Bob Gaughan, Tony Mrozik, J.K. Karlsen, comedian Jeff Wozer, Amy Audibert, Jim Kubiak, Bradley Gelber, football writer Greg Gabriel, Scott Wilson, Buffalo NHL Correspondent Joe Yerdon, and Nick Mendola. You can visit their page by clicking on the link (https://www.buffalosportspage.com/).

If you’re a regular viewer of Wake Up! on WIVB-TV, you’ll soon be watching a new morning co-anchor alongside Jordan Williams. The station has hired Melanie Orlins (left), who most recently moved to Buffalo from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, where she served as the Morning Anchor for FOX 43. She has also worked in Grand Forks, North Dakota and is a Florida State Univeristy alum. She takes over for Teresa Weakley, who left to move closer to family and is now working at WOOD-TV, over a year ago. Interim anchor Brittni Smallwood will return to anchoring the 8 a.m. newscast and report for Wake Up!


A familiar face in local television has returned to the local airwaves. Lia Lando (right) started filling-in as a weekend anchor at WKBW-TV in early July. Some may remember that Lando was the interim anchor at WIVB-TV after Lisa Flynn retired from the station from 2009 to 2010. After that she spent five years at WHEC-TV in Rochester as the anchor of “Roc City Tonight” and the station’s 11 p.m. broadcast. She has previously worked at WROC-TV and WETM-TV.