TEGNA8's Shelly Slater leaving as anchor to spend more time with children
08/02/16 03:17 PM
By ED BARK
@unclebarkycom on Twitter
In a significant shakeup at Dallas-based TEGNA8, 10-year news staffer Shelly Slater is leaving her weekday 4 and 6 p.m. co-anchoring positions to spend more time with her husband and their three pre-teen children.
Staffers learned of the shakeup Tuesday afternoon. So far, newcomer Alisha Laventure and Jason Wheeler have been tabbed to co-anchor the 4 p.m. newscasts while Marcus Moore is being moved to the weekend morning co-anchor slot in place of Laventure. He’ll also contribute to the weekday Daybreak program.
Laventure joined TEGNA8 earlier this summer, and is so new that her picture and bio aren’t yet included on the station’s official “Meet the Team” roster on wfaa.com.
John McCaa currently co-anchors the 6 p.m. weekday newscasts. Incumbent news staffer Cynthia Izaguirre will be joining him in place of Slater. Izaguirre and McCaa also co-anchor the 10 p.m. newscasts. Wheeler’s nighttime weekend anchoring duties remain open for now. Slater will continue as an anchor through early September.
In comments to unclebarky.com, Slater said she was offered a “nice contract” by TEGNA8 “but I asked to step away from the 4 and 6 p.m. news as an anchor. I will be working only a few days per month turning special stories for the 10 p.m. news, on my mom schedule. It’s going to be great. I get to still tell stories and see my Channel 8 family, while focusing on the craziness that comes with three boys!”
Her third child was born in January after Slater went into labor while co-anchoring the 4 p.m. news.
Slater joined TEGNA8 in October 2006 when it was still locally owned by Belo. The Plano, TX native arrived from WDAF-TV in Kansas City and is a graduate of the University of Missouri-Columbia. In her station bio, she says she first decided to become a journalist after meeting with longtime TEGNA8 anchor Gloria Campos, who retired in March of 2014.
TEGNA8 has struggled with its 4 p.m. newscast ratings, in part because of very low-rated 3 to 5 p.m. syndicated lead-in programming from FabLife, The Insider and Inside Edition.
The 6 p.m. newscasts do better, although NBC5 lately has taken charge in both total viewers and 25-to-54-year-olds (main advertiser target audience for news programming).
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