TV

WTVQ changing evening news anchors

Lexington's ABC affiliate announced a new evening news team Monday and the NBC affiliate added a new face to its morning show.

WTVQ-36 named Tom Kenny and Megan Skaggs as its evening anchor team and WLEX-18 hired a Milwaukee anchor and reporter to join Dia Davidson on mornings.

The elevation of Kenny and Skaggs is yet another in a series of moves by WTVQ this year after its purchase by Georgia-based Morris Multimedia.

"I've always been a big fan of Tom Kenny's," said WTVQ General Manager Chris Aldridge. "And I think Tom and Megan look great together. He brings a lot of credibility and maturity to the anchor desk, and I think she counterbalances that with her youth and poise and personality."

Kenny and Skaggs will begin anchoring the 5:30 p.m., 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. newscasts on Thursday, Oct. 30, the first day of the November Nielsen ratings period. The station recently cut its 5 p.m. newscast in favor of the syndicated Judge Judy.

That same day, the station will unveil a new set and graphics, as well as begin broadcasting its news in high-definition. It's the last station in the market to go to HD.

It also plans to drop the "Action News" brand and its "Dedicated, determined, dependable" slogan but has not yet committed to their replacements, Aldridge said.

Kenny has been with the station for seven years but has been in the Lexington TV market for more than two decades, primarily at WLEX where he once co-anchored the evening news with his wife, Nancy Cox.

In recent years, he had anchored WTVQ's morning news with Kristi Runyon, who along with Skaggs, was one of several internal candidates for the female anchor job.

The openings came after WTVQ decided not to renew anchor Don Hudson's contract. His last day is Oct. 27. The plans are for Kenny to broadcast solo until he and Skaggs make the Oct. 30 debut.

Skaggs replaces Megan Newquist, who left in August after she and the station could not agree on a new deal.

Skaggs grew up in Lexington until her family moved to Michigan. She returned in June 2007 as a reporter at WTVQ and is married to WKYT reporter Dave Spencer.

Aldridge said the station will be making more lineup changes in the next week that will address the future of the morning team. Though it had been Kenny's role, he has been anchoring noon and reporting in the past couple of months after returning from a June knee surgery.

He had intended to be out only a couple of weeks but was diagnosed after the surgery with a staph infection.

Filling in for him in the mornings now is former weekend co-anchor Chris Dietz.

Aldridge said WTVQ plans to hire a reporter to fill Skaggs' former role but will not be making additional hires and will realign to fill anchor jobs.

WLEX-18 mornings

Lexington local news leader WLEX-18 has hired Chris Goodman, a weekend anchor at Fox affiliate in Milwaukee, to join Dia Davidson in the mornings.

Davidson has anchored WLEX's morning and noon newscasts alone for several years.

The station once had an ironclad grip on morning viewers but has seen CBS affiliate WKYT-27 approach it and surpass it in some ratings measures in recent months.

Goodman had been at the Milwaukee station since May 2005 and previously worked in Missouri and Mississippi.

He has family in Kentucky, said WLEX News Director Bruce Carter.

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