Tag Archives: Detroit

WDIV Named ‘Station Of The Year’ Again

For the fourth year in a row, the Michigan Association of Broadcasters has named WDIV its Station of the Year.

WDIV is Detroit’s NBC affiliate owned by Graham Media Group.

The station also won honors for broadcasting excellence in 14 categories — 11 best and 13 merit awards for Market 1.

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WDIV Connects With Nextdoor Neighborhoods

WDIV, Graham Media’s Detroit NBC affiliate, is partnering with Nextdoor, the free and private social network for neighborhoods, to boost conversations around local news in communities across the Detroit area.

Mike Katona

“It gives us an opportunity to connect with our viewers on a very specific, geo-targeted neighborhood level,” says Mike Katona, Graham’s digital product manager.

WDIV can not only post relevant and interesting news stories to specific Nextdoor neighborhoods in Metro Detroit, but also engage residents in the stories it works on.

Through open-ended questions and Nextdoor polls, WDIV can hear directly from residents about the various issues affecting them.

Dustin Block

“Discussing local news with neighbors is an essential way to build a strong community and an informed civic dialogue,” says Dustin Block, WDIV’s digital executive producer.

“We hope that the stories we share lead to further community discussions about the topics that matter most to you.

There are more than 140 Detroit neighborhoods on Nextdoor.

“It really allows us to be a member of that community and target our news coverage and events that are of interest to them,” Katona says.

“We had a water outage a few days ago in a certain area, and in addition to doing our normal broadcast about that, we also targeted that section, that neighborhood, that community, posted some information and shared the news about it.”

If there is an article/story that WDIV does not share that residents would like to discuss with neighbors, participants can use the “Share on Nextdoor” icon that will be accessible on all of WDIV’s news stories.

Since Facebook change its algorithms earlier this year to favor posts from friends and family over local news, does this give WDIV an advantage?

“When we are targeting that news message to specific communities that have a built in interest in it, they for sure are going look at the story, share their comments, and participate in a poll,” Katona says.

He adds that right now Graham is working with Nextdoor exclusively in the Detroit and San Antonio markets, and is looking to roll out the agreement in other Graham markets.

“We can reach out to those communities and find out what the pulse of what’s going on there, and build stories off of that, we can throw questions out to those communities and just ask for feedback. It’s us being members of those communities.”

Nextdoor verifies people’s addresses who want to join their network neighborhood on NextDoor to establish that they are members of that neighborhood.

Instead of the “like” icon on Facebook, Nextdoor uses a “thank” button to signal the content they care about.

“It’s a rewarding word to hear,” Katona says.

WXYZ’s Stephen Clark Retires To Pursue Country Music Career

Not many news anchors write and perform country music.

But WXYZ’s Stephen Clark does. And he’s following his passtion right to Nashville.

Now that he officially retired from his other passion yesterday, being a journalist.

Clark has done it all as an anchor, reporter and TV photographer.

But after 16 years as an anchor and and multi-platform journalist at WXYZ and WMYD, he’s handing in his press card in favor of his guitar and songwriting.

WXYZ and WMYD are Scripps’  ABC and MyNetworkTV affiliates in Detroit.

“I became a journalist more than 40 years ago to tell inspiring stories of ordinary people accomplishing extraordinary things,” said Clark.

“As I begin my retirement, I’m happy to report the story of Detroit’s comeback is perhaps my favorite story over these past 40 years. The reborn, revitalized and re-energized Detroit has inspired me to get involved in my own community and I can’t begin to describe how happy I am to have been even a small part of one of the greatest stories of all time.”

Clark started his career as a newspaper photographer in Colorado.

He worked as a TV photographer, reporter and anchor at stations across the country, including KCNC in Denver, KGTV in San Diego and WCBS in New York.

He ran a news bureau in Washington, D.C., covering political stories for viewers in his home market of Denver.

During his career, Clark reported on some of the biggest stories of our times, including the conflict in Bosnia, the Los Angeles riots, the California wildfires, and the terrorist attacks of 9/11. (Clark was a correspondent for CBS News at the time of the attacks and reported from ground zero.)

Clark has also worked tirelessly with the nonprofit organization he co-founded, Scarlet’s Smile, that is committed to improving the lives of children afflicted with debilitating diseases. The foundation is named for his granddaughter Scarlet who was born with Spinal Muscular Atrophy.

The primary goal of the foundation is to build a million dollar playground in Oakland County where kids of all abilities can play together.

In addition to being able to spend more time with his family, Clark plans to pursue his passion for writing and performing country music. He’s an active member of the Nashville Songwriters Association International.

I’ve got a feeling we’ll be hearing more from Stephen Clark and his guitar.

WXYZ-WMYD Donates $10K To Literacy Campaign

WXYZ and WMYD Detroit, Scripps-owned ABC and MyNetworkTV affiliates, respectively, celebrated National Reading Day by delivering a check for $10,000 to the St. Vincent and Sarah Fisher Center.

The money was donated by The Scripps Howard Foundation, as part of its national If You Give a Child a Book … literacy campaign.

Mike Murri, Diane Renaud, Exec. Director, St. Vincent and Sarah Fisher Center; Becky Brickner and Eli Scripps, Scripps Family members

The money will be used to purchase books for children at the Center, which provides educational programs for at-risk children through after school and summer programs.

The campaign is a partnership of the Foundation, the employees of the E.W. Scripps Co. and members of the Scripps family.

WXYZ anchor Carolyn Clifford at the St. Vincent and Sarah Fisher Center

“If You Give a Child a Book …” has distributed more than 100,000 books to children across the country.

“We are thrilled to to be able to advance the great work that is being done at St. Vincent and Sarah Fisher Center through the generosity of the Scripps family,” said Mike Murri, WXYZ-WMYD’s general manager.

Employees of WXYZ and WMYD generously pledged money to purchase books for the St. Vincent and Sarah Fisher Center as part of the campaign.

A member of the Scripps family matched the employee contributions and presented a donation of  $14,106 to the Center. In November, more than 5,600 books were purchased with those funds for children in the community.

Enter Your Station For Service To America Awards

Did your TV station provide exemplary service to your community through a campaign, project or program that served the public good?

It’s time to be recognized nationally for those outstanding efforts by entering the National Association of Broadcasters Education Foundation (NABEF) 2018 Celebration of Service to America Awards.

Winners will be recognized at the 20th annual Celebration of Service to America Awards gala held Tuesday, June 12, at the Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium in Washington.

The awards program, now in its 20th year, has established new categories based on market size.

• Broadcast Ownership Group
• Large/Major Market (TV DMAs 1-50, Radio Markets 1-50)
• Medium Market (TV DMAs 51-100, Radio Markets 51-150)
• Small Market (TV DMAs 101-210, Radio Markets 151-300)

Entries must be submitted by March 9. Additional information on awards criteria and entry rules are available here.

Here’s a video compiled from the 2017 Celebration of Service to America Award.

Here are some of the 2017 winners:

2017, President’s Special Award
WXIA (NBC, Tegna), Atlanta

The NABEF President’s Special Award was presented to Tegna’s WXIA Atlanta. “Charlie Foxtrot” began as an investigation of military policy that stripped service members with certain mental health conditions of their benefits and veteran status. These reports were ultimately aired in 46 cities across the U.S. and culminated with a screening with members of Congress just three days before the Fairness for Veterans Act was passed.

2017, Service to America Award
WDIV (NBC, Graham), Detroit

The 2017 Service to America Award for Television was presented to WDIV in Detroit in recognition of the station’s year-round commitment to excellence in serving its local community. Through news coverage, philanthropy and community service, WDIV puts the needs of viewers first.

2017, Children’s Award for Television
WMUR (ABC, Hearst), Manchester, N.H.

The need for foster and permanent homes for New Hampshire children is greater than ever, attributed in large part to the opioid crisis. Since 2014, WMUR’s New Hampshire Chronicle has featured “Home at Last,” a recurring series of segments with the goal of finding permanent adoptive homes for the more than 700 children in New Hampshire living in out-of-home placement.

2017, Service to Community Award for Television
WRAL (NBC, Capitol Broadcasting), Raleigh, N.C.

The rising tensions in the relationship between police departments and African American communities in Raleigh, Durham and Fayetteville, N.C., inspired WRAL’s Black and Blue documentary. The program became part of an unprecedented two-hour community conversation on air, online and on social media.

WXYZ Promo Makes Free Holiday Gift List

This clever and well-executed promo for WXYZ’s new app is sure to get many downloads. Phil Wrobel, creative services director at the Scripps-owned Detroit ABC affiliate, sent me this note along with the spot.

“I thought this would be a fun promo to share with you. Our goal was to reinforce that our viewers and users can connect with us and get our content on any platform. With the holidays right around the corner, we thought it was a perfect opportunity promote our brand on all the OTT platforms since many of these devices will probably be on a lot of people’s list this year.”

“We had a little fun with the copy and the timing of the spot was perfect for the shopping season. I hope you enjoy!”

Tributes Pour In Honoring Lee Minard

Lee Minard

Lee Minard, former creative services director at KLAS in Las Vegas, died last week at his home in Fountain Hills, Arizonia.

The local TV marketing community is a tight-knit group, especially among long-time veterans.

Many of us are thankful to the mentorship of others in the business who helped us along the way, and so it is for many who crossed paths with Lee Minard.

Lee had an especially long and varied career in television, starting as an art director in 1962 at KEPR Pasco, Wash. Over the years he worked at WREX Rockford, Ill.; KIMA Yakima, Wash.; WFAA Dallas; KCNC and KUSA in Denver; WDIV Detroit; WCBS New York; and WMAR Baltimore. In addition to his work in local TV, Lee also had top marketing roles at PAX-TV and the Food Network.

Last week, I wrote a short piece announcing Lee’s death and asked for anyone to write a comment. Family and friends sent me emails while others posted their comments at the end of that column.

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WDIV Streams Thanksgiving Parade To The World

U.S. News & World Report Travel recognizes Detroit’s America’s Thanksgiving Parade presented by Art Van as one of the best Thanksgiving parades in the country.

And people from around the world can watch the live stream on WDIV’s website, ClickOnDetroit.com. WDIV is Graham Media’s NBC affiliate in the Motor City.

“Nothing kicks off the holiday season better than starting with a hometown parade right in the heart of our city,” said Marla Drutz, WDIV’s general manager.

“And for those who can’t be there in person, metro Detroiters know they can count on us to bring it to them wherever they are and however they want to view it, on-air or online.”

The annual live broadcast begins on WDIV at 9 a.m. on Thanksgiving morning.

The national broadcast, from 10 to 11 a.m., reaches more than 190 major cities across the country.

Throughout the parade broadcast on WDIV and livestreamed on ClickOnDetroit.com, viewers can win special prizes while watching at home.

NOTE: I like to imagine some Michigan soldiers in some far off corner of the world sitting down for Thanksgiving dinner and watching the parade on their laptops.

Tonight At 7, WXYZ Lights Up Detroit’s Holiday Season

The holiday season kicks off tonight at 7 in Detroit when the city’s Christmas tree lights up for the first time.

Scripps-owned ABC affiliate WXYZ will broadcast complete coverage of the event during a live special, Light Up the Season.

Light Up the Season will be streamed live on wxyz.com and on the WXYZ Facebook page.

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WDIV Uncovers Long Lost DeLorean Special

John DeLorean

Johnny Carson had one. And of course, it was featured in the Back to the Future movies.

Simply called the DeLorean after its designer, John DeLorean, and manufactured from 1981 to 1983, the car featured gull-wing doors and a stainless steel body.

DeLorean was found not guilty of cocaine trafficking in 1984.

The special on the iconic car was discovered by Dave Bartkowiak Jr. while looking for sports footage of the Detroit Red Wings.

Here’s the WDIV special from 1980 (WDIV is Graham Media’s NBC affiliate in Detroit).