Tag Archives: Baton Rouge

WAFB Rules Social Media In Baton Rouge

Social Scorecard this week shows how WAFB is able to dominate Baton Rouge’s social media actions on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram over the past six months.

Raycom’s CBS affiliate in the Louisiana capital, is first in social media actions in the market over the last six months according to data from audience insight firm Shareablee.

WAFB ranked No. 1 among members of the DMA (94) while also generating the highest engagement on the top platforms: Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

WAFB led on Facebook with over 2.4 million actions, was first on Instagram with almost 34,000 actions, and topped Twitter with almost 150,000 actions.

Read On

Raycom Stations Expose High Opioid Prescribers

Raycom’s National Investigative Team, led by WVUE’s Lee Zurik, in a series of investigative reports, uncovered how many high-opioid prescribers across the country have avoided scrutiny.

WVUE is Raycom’s Fox affiliate in New Orleans.

Read On

Raycom Producing Senate Debate For Louisiana Stations

aaeaaqaaaaaaaafkaaaajgrkntvlotnjltazyjgtndyxmc04nzmyltzlmzqymdvkmwm2nqRaycom will produce a debate featuring all six candidates for the Louisiana’s open U.S. Senate seat that will air live on its stations in New Orleans, Baton Rouge, Lake Charles, Shreveport and Alexandria.

Viewers can watch the debate from Dillard University in New Orleans on Nov. 2 from 7-8 p.m. on WAFB (CBS, Baton Rouge), WVUE (Fox, New Orleans), KPLC (NBC, Lake Charles), KSLA (CBS, Shreveport), KALB (CW, Alexandria) and C-SPAN.

It will also be live streamed on WAFB.com, Fox8live.com, KPLCTV.com and KSLA.com.

Vicki Zimmerman

Vicki Zimmerman

“We are committed to producing a program that is fair and informative for Louisiana to choose their next U.S. Senator,” said Vicki Zimmerman, Raycom’s regional news director.

Journalists from Raycom’s Louisiana stations will ask questions and field answers from the candidates.

John Snell

John Snell

John Snell, anchor and political reporter at WVUE, will be the debate moderator.

Panelists will be Greg Meriwether of WAFB, Doug Warner of KSLA, and Cynthia Arceneaux of KPLC.

John Kennedy (R), Foster Campbell (D), Caroline Fayard (D), Charles Boustany (R), John Fleming (R) and David Duke (R) have confirmed their participation in the Raycom debate.

Raycom Gets Stars For Louisiana Flood Relief Concert


The power of broadcasting companies to help those in need will be heard loud and clear on Labor Day.

That’s when Raycom Media brings together Randy Jackson and Harry Connick Jr. to headline a show to benefit victims of the recent Louisiana floods. Both stars are Louisiana natives.

imagesT2SAMBGXLouisiana Rising: A Benefit Concert for Flood Relief airs live on Labor Day, September 5, 2016, from 7-9 PM (CT) across all Raycom stations and will be carried nationally on Bounce TV.

Randy Jackson

Randy Jackson

“Saddened by the devastating tragedies that keep affecting my Louisiana,” said Jackson.

“I want to help raise awareness and restore hope to people that are hurting in the place that I will always call home.” Jackson was born in Baton Rouge.

Harry Connick, Jr.

Harry Connick, Jr.

“So sorry that my home state is undergoing such hardship once again,” said Connick. “Seems like just yesterday that Katrina left a path of destruction. I hope that this benefit concert brings much needed attention to the good people of Louisiana.”

Pat LaPlatney

Pat LaPlatney

“Our goal is to raise awareness, and more importantly, money, for the tens of thousands of people who need help to get back on their feet,” said Pat LaPlatney, Raycom’s president.

Sandy Breland

Sandy Breland

“So many people are hurting right now. And they have lost so much, our hope is that this concert can help raise money for them to rebuild their lives,” said Sandy Breland, Raycom’s group vice president.

The show will broadcast from Baton Rouge’s River Center Theater and will benefit the American Red Cross’s Louisiana Flood Relief fund.

More than a dozen well-known artists will play in the concert, including New Orleans-based Better Than Ezra. Sonny Landreth, Chris Thomas King, MacKenzie Bourg, Luther Kent and Rockin’ Dopsie.

Former TV Reporter Videos Red Cross Plea

Gerard Braud

Gerard Braud

You can’t blame Gerard Braud for shooting a video and then posting it on Facebook that shows what Baton Rouge homeowners are facing after their homes were flooded.

Braud went to Baton Rouge to help a friend get his house in order. Like him, I feel the urge to do something to help, too.

The video shows Braud driving down a typical street there panning left and right at the huge piles of trash piled up on the front lawns of residents there.

Braud was a reporter at the NBC affil in New Orleans, WDSU, when I worked there. He’s a crisis communications expert these days, but couldn’t help himself by reporting on what homeowners must go through after the flood waters have receded.

Mountains of household goods are being cleaned out of 40,000 homes in the greater Baton Rouge area this weekend. People have lost everything they own on the first floor of their homes. Walk through your first floor and just imagine having to haul it all out to the street, then tear our the carpet and flooring, then tear out the first floor sheet rock. Please pray for these folks.(Our family is unaffected.) Your donation to the American Red Cross can make a real difference in the lives of these people.

Posted by Gerard Braud on Saturday, August 20, 2016

“Donations to the American Red Cross will really make a difference,” said Braud on a Facebook post.

“Flood insurance will only pay 20 cents on a dollar for items lost. It is NOT replacement cost at all. Plus, many of these homes have no flood insurance because they are not in FEMA designated flood zones. This flood is classified as a once in 1,000 year event.”

If you’d like to make a donation that will go to help the flood victims in Louisiana, click here.

WBRZ Flood Coverage Extends 114 Continuous Hours

57adfa3f1b4ed_image“I’ve been fighting for three days, sandbagging, had a big pump and everything, I slept maybe 12 hours in the last four days trying to save it.”

If you want to get some idea of what people in the flooded areas of Louisiana are going through, take 20 seconds to watch this video from WBRZ’s Facebook page.

Read On

WAFB’s Stunning Rescue Video Brings World’s Attention To Flooding

11334836_G_1471130638192_5202303_ver1_0WAFB’s dramatic video, shot by reporter Robbie Reynold, of a man rescuing a woman and her dog from a submerged car was the most engaged post on Facebook in the world on Saturday and Sunday, according to Robb Hays, news director of the Raycom-owned CBS affiliate in Baton Rouge, La.

Dramatic water rescue in Baton Rouge

A dramatic moment captured by WAFB's Robbie Reynold. This is one of thousands of rescues that have been conducted over the last 24-hours. For more in East Baton Rouge Parish >> http://bit.ly/2aT3RM7

Posted by WAFB Channel 9 on Saturday, August 13, 2016

Hays says the rain and flooding began Friday morning when a flash flood warning on his phone woke him at 6 a.m.

He went to the station and it has been in continuous coverage of the flood for much of the past four days, just as I’m sure many of the other TV stations have been in the all of the affected flooded areas of southern Louisiana.

The flooding is epic, says Hays. Hundreds of people were stranded in their cars and trucks on Interstate 12 for up to 24 hours. Most of them have been rescued leaving behind hundreds of abandoned vehicles on the interstate.

WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

In a phone interview Monday afternoon, an exhausted Hays said news crews with backpack technology able to go live from the scene are arriving from other Raycom stations in nearby markets to help with flood coverage.

“These are people ready to report and are immediately off and out the door, in boats ready to go live with their reports,” said Hays. Nine have arrived so far with another 10 on their way.

Liz Koh

Liz Koh

Hays mentions a live Facebook report by Liz Koh, a WAFB reporter/producer. Hays says at one point in the live feed, the team on the boat spots an abandoned dog sitting on the steps of a house surrounded by water. When the team rescues the dog and brings it on the boat, there wasn’t a dry eye in the newsroom, he said.

(To see the part where the team spots and rescues the dog, scroll through to about the 13 minute mark.)

Joining rescue crews on boat in St Amant

Posted by Liz Koh WAFB on Monday, August 15, 2016

In the rescue video shot by Robbie Reynold, a WAFB reporter, the woman can be heard yelling, “Oh my God, I’m drowning,” from inside the car as it began to submerge completely under the water.

Robbie Reynold

Robbie Reynold

I talked to Robbie Reynold Monday evening as he was in the field monitoring flood waters in the Iberville Parish area of Baton Rouge.

Reynold says he started working at WAFB in March, and since then there have been some major stories he’s had to cover in the city. He cited the shooting of Alton Sterling followed by the shooting deaths of three area police officers.

“So I think I’ve gotten a great idea about the duty of a television journalist here but I’ve never been involved in a story like this flooding.”

Reynold says he’s aware that the public rely on local TV for information, as he’s getting stopped all the time by people asking him what he knows about the flooded areas and where they can get help.

“People are always telling me, I’m watching your station, watching your report. It’s amazing, I never felt that kind of duty before as a journalist. It’s pretty incredible.”

CpxLVsnUIAE7OHfReynold says his news director told him to join David Phung and Jason Dixon, who were in a boat and going out and helping people.

“They’re just civilians, volunteers helping out.”

Phung is a brother-in-law of a news producer at WAFB.

Reynold says they were in the boat and he was recording on his camera when they saw the red car.

“When we saw her driving toward us, Jason and David were trying to pull her over, because they knew she wasn’t going to make it through the water, but she didn’t stop.”

“I pretty much rolled this entire time. As we approached the car, we couldn’t tell if she had already gotten out of it. But then we heard her yelling that she was still in the car, and I was just rolling, I was looking around for something I could grab to help him out, and that’s kind of when things got bad and David jumped in the water. He did that on his own.”

HE'S A HERO! David Phung, the man who rescued a woman and her dog from a sinking car in Louisiana, talks about what happened moments before he pulled them out. VIDEO OF RESCUE–>http://bit.ly/2aURc8b

Posted by KPRC2 / Click2Houston on Monday, August 15, 2016

Reynold says the woman and her dog are recovering and doing well.

When I ask Reynold about how his video has brought the world’s eyes to the flodding situation there, he said, “I’m glad I could share that moment with David.”

As to Phung, is he aware of the attention it has brought on him?

“He hasn’t realized the magnitude of it yet. He’s busy helping his family and other families with the flooding, he’s been so caught up in that. I’m not sure he’s even aware of the acclaim.”

Amazing Flood Rescue Of Woman And Dog By WAFB

11334836_G_1471130638192_5202303_ver1_0We’ve all seen video on Facebook and other online sources of people being rescued in floods.

Robbie Reynold

Robbie Reynold

But this video shot by Robbie Reynold, a reporter and one-man band journalist at WAFB, Raycom’s CBS affiliate in Baton Rouge, La., is one of the most amazing I’ve ever seen.

The video has been seen by more than 21 million people and almost 17,000 people have commented on it.

I called WAFB’s newsroom and was told the gentleman who went into the water and pulled the woman and her dog from the sunken car is David Phung, who is the brother-in-law of one of WAFB’s news producers. I’m working to get more information about this video and story and will hopefully have updates.

Dramatic water rescue in Baton Rouge

A dramatic moment captured by WAFB's Robbie Reynold. This is one of thousands of rescues that have been conducted over the last 24-hours. For more in East Baton Rouge Parish >> http://bit.ly/2aT3RM7

Posted by WAFB Channel 9 on Saturday, August 13, 2016

WBRZ Telethon Raises $185,000 For First Responders

Cn-uYIGWAAgMGM4WBRZ, the ABC affiliate in Baton Rouge, La., owned by the Manship family, raised more than $185,000 in an hour-long telethon, Unite for Our Heroes Telethon, on July 28.

More donations continue to pour in, so the station expects that amount will grow to exceed $200,000.

“Last night was one of the most rewarding experiences in my 40-year television career,” said Rocky Daboval, WBRZ’s general manager.

“In a matter of days, we came together and produced a telethon that will bring in well over $185,000 for our first responders. More importantly, I believe it brought this community together and helped start our healing process.”

Police and community leaders participated in the television show at the WBRZ studios. In live interviews, they reflected on the difficult times the community has faced and shared their support for the families of three fallen police officers.

“This has been a trying time in our community,” said Lee Polowczuk, WBRZ’s news director. “The contributions to the fund are a testament to the gratitude viewers in our area feel towards those who respond, protect and serve.”

WBRZ's Sylvia Weatherspoon with Louisiana Governor, John Bel Edwards

WBRZ’s Sylvia Weatherspoon with Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards

The money raised benefits the EBR First Responders Fund — an account established in the 1980s for law enforcement officers and first responders who are injured in the line of duty or for their families if they die while on the job.

Richard Manship, Manship Media’s president, donated $10,000 to the current fund and another $10,000 to help create an additional fund.

The call demand was so high during the telethon that the expanded phone system couldn’t handle the volume, crashing lines twice, according to the station.

Donations can still be made at any area Whitney Hancock Bank location, or online at WBRZ.com.

WAFB’s Town Hall Meeting Airs Nationwide

11120013_GWAFB, the CBS affiliate in Baton Rouge, La., is airing a town hall meeting Tuesday night that will be carried nationwide on the Bounce TV multicast network.

untitledWhere Do We Go From Here, will air live and uninterrupted, starting at 7 p.m. CT, (8 ET), on WAFB, livestreamed on WAFB.com and on WAFB’s news app, as well as delivered nationwide on Bounce TV.

Bounce TV co-founder Martin Luther King III will join Baton Rouge community leaders, activists and law enforcement on the panel.

Topics for Where Do We Go From Here include law enforcement/community relations, de-escalation training, economics, and health and educational opportunities.

Where Do We Go From Here aims to help facilitate communication and healing following several deadly, tragic events that have included police-involved shooting deaths of African-American men, including Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge. Following those incidents, at least eight law enforcement officers have been killed. In Dallas, five officers died when a lone gunman ambushed police protecting Black Lives Matter protestors. A week later in Baton Rouge, another lone gunman opened fire on officers, killing three of them.

For more information about Where Do We Go From Here, including bios of presenters, click here.