Indiana RadioWatch: September 14, 2017

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In the early 1990s, Jim Payne was an anchor and reporter at what was then NBC affiliate WKJG-TV (Channel 33, Fort Wayne). After "NBC33," he moved to Raleigh/Durham, North Carolina (WRAL-TV) and now anchors in Orlando, Florida at WESH-TV. He's been at WESH-TV since 2000. Last night, he shared his son's addiction story. Here's the whole story, along with coverage from Hal Boedeker at the Orlando Sentinel.


In July 2016, Todd Connor left the anchor chair at downstate E.W. Scripps' ABC affiliate WRTV-TV (Channel 6, Indianapolis). Mr. Connor anchored the late afternoon and evening news.

Mr. Connor recently joined Sinclair's CBS affiliate WSBT-TV (Channel 22, South Bend) as their weekday evening anchor (5pm, 6pm, 11pm) and on their .2 "WSBT 22 News on FOX" at 10pm.

Earlier in Mr. Connor's career, he worked at WSBT-TV (alongside Cindy Ward). After that, he joined a fledgling FOX News Channel (1996-2008). After FOX News, Mr. Connor became an anchor/correspondent for ABC News. Then, he joined WRTV-TV.


If you were a longtime listener to Hammond's WJOB (1230am), you might have heard Keith Middleton. Sad to say Mr. Middleton died on Saturday at age 85. Mr. Middleton is survived by his wife and three sons, including WBBM-FM's Brian Middleton. Visitation will be Sunday September 17 from 2:00PM until 4:30PM, Central Time at Panozzo Bros. Funeral Home, 530 W. 14th St., Chicago Heights, IL 60411.

Gerard Media's N-T/WIMS (1420am, Michigan City) and N-T/WHFB (1060am, Benton Harbor, Michigan) announce several new promotions: Nick Cohn becomes OM and Mornings at WHFB. Mr. Cohn graduated from the Illinois Center for Broadcasting. Jackie Beissel becomes the midday host and social media director at WIMS. Ms. Beissel interned at WIMS while attending Purdue University Northwest. Finally, Alex Bassett becomes an afternoon host and weaves local content into the syndicated Dave Ramsey Show on WIMS. Mr. Bassett graduated from Ball State University.


In 1959, Howard Caldwell joined what was then an NBC affiliate: WFBM-TV (Channel 6, Indianapolis). He was a reporter, and became an anchor. He anchored with Ken Beckley ("WFBM Early Report") which expanded to an hour long local newscast in the 1960s. With the McGraw-Hill purchase (1972), new call letters (WRTV), and a new ABC network affiliation in 1979, Mr. Caldwell remained a journalist, reporter, and anchor. Mr. Caldwell retired in 1994. I'm sad to say that he passed away Monday at age 92. The Butler University alum (Class of 1950) also became an author, and was inducted into both the Indiana Journalism Hall of Fame (1991) and the Indiana Broadcast Pioneers Hall of Fame.


We missed this earlier in the year: Jasper on the Air's Country/WQKZ (98.5fm, Ferdinand) promotes Melanie Arehart to the PD chair. Ms. Arehart also does sales, social media, and IT work at

That's all for this issue. Thank you for your continued support.

Blaine Thompson
Indiana RadioWatch

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All pages Copyright Blaine Thompson. Articles, photos, corrections, and other contributions should be e-mailed to the editors.