9-Year Seattle Television Veteran Is The Latest Casualty At King-TV
KING-TV has cut another news veteran from its roster.
Weekend anchor David Kerley, nine years of Seattle TV experience under his belt, is looking for a new job.
Kerley got the message Tuesday afternoon that KING had decided not to renew his contract. His boss, news director Bob Jordan, called him into his office after Kerley filed a live report from the Kingdome.
"It looks like the Mariners are staying and I'm going," Kerley said yesterday.
Along with fulfilling his chores as anchor, Kerley has been covering the proposed sale of the Mariners; he attended the recent baseball owners' meetings in Chicago, and was regarded as one of the most knowledgeable TV reporters on that beat. He joined KING-TV from KIRO-TV, where he was a reporter/anchor from 1983 to 1986.
Kerley said that Jordan "made it clear (the decision) had nothing to do with my work. I pointed out we'd been No. 1 for five years on the weekends. He said he wanted to go in a new direction."
Jordan agreed that he saw nothing in the viewership figures that prompted the move. "These are subjective decisions," Jordan said. "It's the coach's call, as they say."
Other sources inside the Channel 5 newsroom figured that Kerley may have been let go to trim expenses at the station, which recently changed ownership.
"No, my budget's healthy," said Jordan, who joined KING in the spring of 1990. "I have more money to spend this year than last."
For those without a scorecard, the list of prominent on-air talent who have walked or been pushed out the door during Jordan's rule includes anchor Don Porter, sports reporter Lou Gellos, reporters Bob Simmons, Greg Palmer, Julie Blacklow and Jack Hamann.
The churn of new faces led one observer to modify the station's slogan from "The Home Team" to "The Visiting Team."
Kerley's wife, reporter Janet Myers, had left Channel 5 earlier this year to devote more time to raising the couple's two children.
Brendan McLaughlin, KING's early-a.m. weekend anchor, will slide into Kerley's vacant spot on the anchor desk. Julie Francavilla, a reporter who joined KING-TV in December, inherits the early weekend slot.
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