Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Greg Peterson Headed to NBC Station In Alabama

Greg Peterson mug, courtesy of KMTVFormer KMTV (Cox Channel 5) anchor Greg Peterson is headed to Mobile, Ala., to be a weekday evening news anchor at NBC affiliate WPMI.

Last week, WPMI fired its three primary news anchors in the midst of lackluster ratings and management changes. The station is one of a number of Clear Channel Communications properties up for sale.

Peterson starts Monday and will anchor at 5, 6 and 10 p.m., beginning March 26.

"We hate to leave Omaha because my wife, Jill, is from here," Peterson said. "But it's golf 12 months a year there and that was a big factor."

Last December, Peterson's contract at KMTV was not renewed after nearly five years, along with that of veteran co-anchor Deborah Ward. She has since become the director of public relations and marketing for the Omaha Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Peterson said he enjoyed his three months of "retirement."

"I got to spend some great time with my family," he said. "It was also the first ratings period I haven't participated in in 25 years, so that was kind of odd. It's been a great break but I'm chomping at the bit to get back at it."

Nielsen Media Research groups the Mobile market with Pensacola, Fla., and lists it as the 59th largest in the country (Omaha is No. 75).

In a press release issued today by WPMI, Station Vice President and General Manager Bob Franklin attempted to control the negative publicity that sometimes occurs when veteran anchor teams are abrubtly terminated. Peterson's co-anchor is expected to be named in the coming weeks.

"NBC 15 recently made a commitment to institute some significant changes to our local news programs in an effort to make them even more relevant for our viewers," Franklin said. "We're thrilled to welcome Greg and are confident in his ability to bring our viewers the day's top stories with the most informative and entertaining delivery in town."

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'm glad Greg got a new job after how rotten KMTV was to him.

Kind of ironic that he got this new job after three other anchors were given pretty much the same fate.

Anonymous said...

I'm very happy for him. He comes across as a very warm, genuine personality and is great at what he does. I wish him and his family well down South.

Anonymous said...

Bye Sexy!

Anonymous said...

I am happy to find out Greg & Deb both have landed good jobs and I wish them both the best. Greg is a great news anchor and will surely do great for the new station.

Anonymous said...

It's interesting to note how many times Bob Franklin's been ousted from other G.M. positions before hatcheting others in Mobile. It's a dog-eat-dog business in the world of tv news.

Obbop said...

Does he get to say "y'all" on-air down there deep in the heart of Dixie?

Anonymous said...

Ok, who would you choose...Greg Peterson or Carlo Checceto?

Exactly. Great move Action 3.

Ouch.

Joe Swank said...

Kind of funny that he goes to a larger market. And that is why they are Channel 3rd.

Anonymous said...

I have not watched any bit of Channel 3rd news since Greg & Deb left. On to bigger and BETTER things Greg....

Anonymous said...

In reality, Mobile, Alabama is a much smaller market than Omaha..Omaha's metro population is MUCH larger than Mobile, by nearly 300,000 people. These Nielsen TV market rankinga are VERY misleading. Mobile includes a separate metro in Pensacola, FL. By comparison, the Omaha TV market does not include Lincoln. Although most Lincoln residents watch Omaha TV channels and is only 50 miles away. Mobile is a BIG step dwn from Omaha.

Joe Swank said...

Lincoln has a seperate CBS affiliate so I dont think they are watching the 3rd in Lincoln.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps..But Mobile is a step down from Omaha. People in the business know it..Nielsens's market rankings are very misleading. And most Lincolnites watch the 4 Omaha TV stations. This is fact.

Anonymous said...

so what job did get deb ward get.

Anonymous said...

KPTM is now in 3rd

Anonymous said...

I am originally from Lincoln, NE, then worked in Omaha and moved with my husband to Eglin AFB, FL. We still live in the Florida panhandle and watch WPMI-15 every day. Imagine my surprise when I see the promos for Greg Peterson this morning! He was terrific in Omaha and I am thrilled to see him come here. Mobile is definitely a larger market as it extends into Florida, even quite farther west than Pensacola. Whatever the politics involved, Greg will love it here and yes, he can definitely incorporate y'all now and again!

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately since Greg's been here in the Mobile/Pensacola market, WPMI's standing in the community has taken a major hit, and many who did watch the newscasts bailed for other stations.
Sadly, Peterson has been behaving like a prima donna since he arrived, yelling at people in the newsroom and studio, and running to the general manager every time something didn't go exactly his way. Ask someone to tell you about the incident involving a missing frozen dinner that prompted a stationwide e-mail from the general manager.
Greg is also pissing off people in the community (see prima donna comment above). There's talk Peterson may soon be shown the door.
The whole dog and pony show cost them their news director, who pulled up the ratings from where they had been when he came to town nearly 10 years ago.
The basic business rule, "if it ain't broke don't fix it," is something Bob Franklin never learned. WPMI is last in the ratings because they are the relative newcomers. Viewers here are very loyal and rarely change their habits.
Firing the three previous anchors only served to lose viewers the station had gained over the last few years, something we'll see as the new numbers are made public.
Meanwhile Franklin's days at WPMI are numbered. As soon as the Clear Channel sellout gets the okay from regulators, he'll be another bad memory. But, the damage is already done.