In news from today, Afternoon Drive Host/Assistant Program Director/Music Director Jud Heussler (pictured above) is leaving Kiss 98.5 (WKSE-FM) after spending nearly 8 years with the station. The Fredonia graduate began at the station as an intern and took over the afternoon hosting duties in 2012. Heussler is moving south and heading to Raleigh, North Carolina to be Program Director at duoply Pulse FM 96.9 & 102.5 (WWPL-FM and WPLW-FM). His last day on the air in Buffalo will be Tuesday, January 31. He was also the recipient of the Radio Broadcaster of the Year Award in 2013 from the BEMAs, which used to be hosted by the Buffalo Broadcasters Association.
Also from the Entercom cluster, traffic reporter Allan Harris has undergone a successful kidney transplant. The news was confirmed on Twitter by WBEN-AM on Friday afternoon. Just before Thanksgiving, Harris had announced on the air that there was a kidney transplant available, however, it wasn’t a match. Tim Wenger and Randy Bushover have been filling in while Harris is out recovering. No timetable has been announced of when he will return but we wish him the best as he gets well!
WGRZ-TV’s Claudine Ewing was featured in the Buffalo News article by Alan Pergament for celebrating 25 years in broadcasting. The Buffalo State graduate started off her career at WBEN-AM and WIVB-TV before making the switch over to WGRZ-TV in 1998. Ewing reports regularly and also fills-in on the anchor desk periodically. Congratulations to Claudine on such an incredible milestone!
In news from the producing world, WKBW-TV has added John Tummino as the 11 p.m. producer. He spent two years working at WPTZ-TV, which covered the Burlington, Vermont and Plattsburgh, New York markets. He also worked at WSYR-TV and News 12 New Jersey following graduation from Syracuse University.
Also, Lucas Smith, former producer at WIVB-TV, is now an Executive Producer at WINK-TV in Fort Myers, Florida. As reported previously, Smith had spent 8 years with News 4 before heading south.
Current Buffalo Broadcasters Association Board Member Carl Lam is now covering weather duties at WGRZ-TV on a fill-in basis with the station. He made his first appearance on Sunday’s evening broadcasts and will continue to cover when needed. Lam is a former two time intern at WGRZ-TV with the news department in 2013 and the weather team in 2014. He is also continuing his role as a fill-in traffic reporter with the NFTA appearing on Daybreak. He joins the team of Kevin O’Connell, Patrick Hammer, Maria Genero, Jennifer Stanonis, Kevin O’Neill, and Mary Beth Wrobel.
And also, if you missed the update from August, meteorologist Heather Waldman will also be joining Storm Team 2 and splitting evening shifts with Maria Genero, when Kevin O’Connell is expected to retire. The Penn State Graduate has been working at AccuWeather in State College, Pennsylvania and is expected to arrive sometime in early 2017.
Chief Weather Anchor Kevin O’Connell from WGRZ-TV can add the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences’ (NATAS) Silver Circle award to his long list of accolades. O’Connell joined the NBC affiliate in 1993.
The Gold & Silver Circles are made up from a highly distinguished broadcast professionals who have made significant contributions to their respective market. O’Connell was one of seventeen individuals selected to receive this prestigious award and no one else in Western New York has ever claimed this honor.
The ceremony was held in New York City at the Time Warner Center last week and other notable names receiving the Gold or Silver Circle award include Pat Battle from WNBC-TV, Diana Williams from WABC-TV, and Gabe Pressman from WNBC-TV.