By Alan Pergament
A few months after signing co-anchor Keith Radford to a new deal, Channel 7 has retained co-anchor Joanna Pasceri.
Channel 7 News Director Polly Van Doren confirmed Pasceri’s new deal and added both anchors have been upped for three years.
She said neither anchor took a pay cut, which has become routine lately in the Buffalo market.
Van Doren declined to comment on speculation that both contracts enable the ABC affiliate to let the anchors go with a brief notice. My sources have told me recent deals give Channel 7 that right as long as it gives notice of between eight to 13 weeks.
This is Pasceri's 20th year (wow, time flies) at Channel 7. She arrived in 1993 from an Elmira station as a producer and produced one of Radford's newscasts years before she became his fifth female co-anchor. (Raise your hand if you can name the other four.)
There will be more on Channel 7 and Van Doren’s plans to try and make it more competitive with rivals Channel 2 and Channel 4 in my column in this Saturday’s Buffalo News.
John Murphy confirmed late Tuesday that his new career as an advertising spokesman for NOCO and a few other clients was made possible because he left Channel 4. “Basically, I do it for my friends,” said Murphy, noting that NOCO sponsors his WGR radio show on the Buffalo Bills.
I guess I should have added the finalists for the Pinnacle Award in the Buffalo Excellence in Media Awards competition that were announced Tuesday. I would have mentioned it but I didn’t know what the qualifications were for it. The finalists are WBFO’s Eileen Buckley, Channel 2 photographer Andy
DeSantis, former Channel 2 reporter Pete Gallivan, Star 102.5 personality Rob Lucas and veteran studio cameraman Charlie Smith of Channel 7.
According to a BEMA spokesman, the Pinnacle honors “an individual who has exhibited outstanding performance over a career span of 16 years or more of service in radio or television in the Buffalo market.” I don’t know how they came up with 16 years. Maybe they should call it the Sweet 16 award.
One other note about the BEMAs: A new rule this year makes members of the Buffalo Broadcasters Hall of Fame ineligible for an award. Several members of the HOF remain on the air.
Back to Channel 7. Here’s an example of what Van Doren is up against in making Channel 7 more competitive. During the February sweeps, Channel 2’s “WNY Living,” a Saturday morning program with paid elements that is hosted by Janet Snyder, gets a higher rating than any Channel 7 newscast.
It was amusing to read the Newsday story carried in The News Wednesday about the reasons for the national demise of NBC’s “Today” show but it really has little relevance to Western New York. Today” dominates here, primarily because it is carried on Channel 2, which gives it a great lead-in with "Daybreak.” ABC’s “Good Morning America,” which is No. 1 nationally, is No. 2 here because Channel 7 gives it a terrible lead-in. Indeed, the CBS Morning Show on Channel 4 was in a close battle here for second place during the recently-concluded February sweeps.