Houston Anchor Getting Out Before She's Pushed Out

KPRC 2 weekend morning Anchor Courtney Zavala is calling it a career at the Houston NBC affiliate.

"It's time for me to bow out gracefully and go out the way I want to go out instead of them telling me it's time to leave," Zavala told mikemcguff.com. "It was not an easy decision, it was several months in the making."

Zavala, who joined KPRC back in 2003, says he contract was up and the station offered her another, but she chose to leave (i.e. it was a lowball offer). 

The Anchor says she has no future career plans, except for hanging out with her husband and two boys.

"I feel like I missed so much of my family life, that I'm just ready to be present," Zavala told me.

She says the family is certainly excited to have her home, especially with Christmas coming up.

For nine years, Zavala has been waking up at 2am for five days a week. She says you never fully get used to it, but her husband's support made it easier - especially with the kids.

Philly Reporter's Husband to be Tried for Sexual Assault

WPVI Reporter Annie McCormick's husband is making news in Philadelphia, but we doubt the Reporter is happy about it. 

McCormick's husband is Andrew Marsico, a noted Philadelphia Republican lobbyist and he has been ordered to stand trial on sexual assault charges in a September incident involving a 27-year-old woman.

Marsico was held for court on seven counts including aggravated indecent assault without consent, unlawful restraint, and false imprisonment. A count of reckless endangerment was dismissed by Municipal Court Judge Roger F. Gordon at the end of the preliminary hearing.

Defense attorney Fortunato N. Perri Jr. said Marsico "continues to maintain his innocence and plans to clear his good name at trial."

Assistant District Attorney Kristen Kemp said the alleged victim was the only witness to testify at the hearing.

The woman told police that she met Marsico, 40, at an event at the Union League and that afterward they went to Marsico's office at Greenlee Partners at the nearby Bellevue hotel.

The woman said the alleged assault took place in Marsico's office about 10 p.m.

H/T Philadelphia Inquirer

Longtime KABC Gm to Retire

Longtime KABC General Manager Arnie Kleiner says that he is going to retire from the station at the end of January.

Kleiner has with the West coast O&O for 19 years. 

“Through his strong leadership, Arnie has led a team that has built KABC into the number one television station in Los Angeles,” said ABC O&O boss Rebecca Campbell. “We are extremely appreciative of his many years of commitment and dedication to our Owned Station Group, and the great passion that Arnie has brought to KABC.”

“I’ve been so lucky to have had such a long and rewarding career in the television business,” said Kleiner. “I’ve had the great privilege of working with an amazing group of people and I’m very glad to have helped build KABC-TV into the great station it is today. I leave the station in good hands, and they can count on me to be their most loyal viewer.”

There’s no word yet on a replacement.

H/T Variety

Jeff Fager Headed Back to 60 Minutes Full-time

CBS News Chairman and 60 Minutes Executive Producer Jeff Fager is giving up one of the two jobs.

Fager sent a memo out to the staff telling them that he was stepping down as the CBS News Chairman and will focus all his efforts on his EP job at 60 Minutes.

Fager says it was always his plan to return to 60 Minutes full-time and in the memo he said, "I can't imagine a better time for that than right now."

60 Minutes has been on a ratings roll as of late, finishing near the top of the ratings for the last month. 

David Rhodes will remain the President of CBS News. 

Look Who's Back in the Newsroom in Miami

Back in September, FTVLive wrote that "South Florida viewers have not seen WFOR Investigative Reporter Michele Gillen on the air for months and many are wondering where she is? The same can be said for those working in the WFOR newsroom."

 This week, Gillen showed back up in the WFOR newsroom acting like nothing ever happened.  

It's the first time Gillen has been seen in the newsroom since a public blowout between her and fellow investigative newsman Jim DeFede.

Gossip Extra reports that Gillen walked in Monday like she hadn’t missed one third of the work year, sat down at her desk six cubicles away from DeFede and started making calls for a story about Pope Francis‘ upcoming trip to the United States.

“It’s like she never left,” one source said. “Nobody’s talking about it. Nobody’s talking to her. And she’s not talking to anybody.”

Gillen walked out in mid-July after a nasty tongue-lashing about her work ethics from DeFede.

“At one point (during a meeting), Jim went on a rant about the lack of productivity from the investigative team,” a newsroom dweller told me at the time. “He said something about being worried the station will do away with the team.

“Then he went off on Michele and (reporter) Brian Andrews and told them that they’re not on the air often enough and don’t pull their own weight.”

What started out as a professional conversation degenerated into a shouting match, and Gillen eventually accused her colleagues of creating a hostile work environment and left.

Gillen’s contract is up at the end of the year.

Former Sacramento Anchor Pleads Not Guilty

In a case that is moving through the court system at a glacier pace, former KTXL Anchor Sabrina Rodriguez and her former fiancé have entered “not guilty” pleas to the theft charges.

Rodriguez, who was arrested back in July entered her plea yesterday in Sacramento County Court.

She and her former boyfriend are due back in court in January for a preliminary hearing.

Rodriguez, who was a morning anchor before she was charged with grand theft, burglary and conspiracy charges, broke off her relationship with her boyfriend after the two were arrested. 

She "resigned" from the station to take the time to "clear her good name."

The Apple of my Eye

FTVLive was hoping to replace our 5 year old computer with a new Apple iMac and we were hoping we would be able to have the new computer in place by Black Friday.

Our old desktop computer has served us well, but it is starting to have problems and needs to soon be replaced. 

We asked you guys, the FTVLive readers if you wanted to help us by the next computer that should last us another 5 years at least.

A number of awesome people in this business have sent some money our way and we now sit just a few hundred dollars away from our goal. People from local stations, O&O's, broadcast networks and all the cable networks (except one, and no it's not CNN) have sent some $ to help us out. 

If you would like to keep this website going and want to help out, we have two ways you can do it. You may either use PayPal and donate money using a credit card or send us an Apple E-gift card.

If you want to use PayPal, here's the link:

You can also stop by the Apple Store and purchase a gift card and send it our way. You can even do an online gift card and send it to our email address (ftvlive@gmail.com) with no postage needed. 

And Another Social Media Fail

When gunshots starting flying through the library at Florida State University, a University of Alabama student who serves as a campus reporter for ESPNU took to Twitter.

ESPN Reporter Marisa Martin, a sports broadcasting student at the university, tweeted a joke about FSU troubled and talented Quarterback Jameis Winston.

After Martin was quickly criticized by hundreds of people for her initial tweet, she soon offered a non-apology:

"Since apparently I cant make a joke in all seriousness I hope everyone at FSU is safe & that the gunman is found. But I stand by my opinions"

Not long after that she deleted her Twitter account completely and then went to the old stand by claiming she was hacked. She tweeted out the hacking claims on her school's account:

It's another example of someone not thinking before they tweet and this might likely have killed her Journalism career before it really even got started. 

Another one Out the Door in Phoenix

FTVLive has been telling you about moves that are going down in Phoenix before they even happen.

On Monday, we told you to keep your eye o KTVK and told you changes were coming.

Yesterday, FTVLive FIRST told you that popular AM Anchor Kaley O’Kelley was headed to KTVT in Dallas. 

After FTVLive's report KTVK/KPHO duopoly News Director Leona Wood held a meeting confirming her departure.  

Monday we said that  longtime primary anchor Carey Pena’s desk looked a little too ‘tidy’ (hint: we expected her to be the next to leave).

Yesterday, Wood held another meeting later in the day announcing that Pena (pictured), a 16-year veteran at the station was leaving.

Pena also posted the news to her Facebook page saying, "After many positive discussions with management, we were not able to reach an agreement on contract terms and so, the time has come to move on."

Pena is not yet tipping her hand as to her next move. 

Since Meredith took over, the KTVK newsroom is in turmoil. They are losing popular talent and many inside are not happy. 

Stay tuned.... 

Bill Cosby's Lawyers Warn Reporters About Reporting on the Rape Allegations

Needless to say, it hasn't been a good week for Bill Cosby. More women have come forward to say the legendary comic raped them and NBC, Netflix and others have cancelled planned Cosby shows or appearances.

But, according to the comedian's lawyers, it's not Cosby that should be worried, but the journalists covering his alleged crimes.

In a letter, Cosby attorney Martin Singer categorically denying the claims made this week by model Janice Dickenson and cautioning "in the strongest possible terms" against repeating her story, which Singer called "an outrageous defamatory lie."

"If you recklessly publish the Story instead of checking readily available information demonstrating its falsity," wrote Singer, "all those involved will be exposed to very substantial liability."

"You proceed at your own peril," he added.

The AP has released a video that shows Cosby bullying a reporter earlier this month and trying to get part of the interview squashed:

H/T Gawker