WKYT (Channel 27) was recently honored with a special achievement regional Emmy for station excellence.
The CBS affiliate said it was the first time a Lexington station had received the honor; the region includes television markets in Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio and West Virginia.
"It's a very gratifying award because it recognizes everybody at the station for their contribution and the commitment the station has toward news and community service," said news director Robert Thomas, who accepted the award at the ceremony in July in Louisville.
WKYT also won regional Emmys for spot news for coverage of a goat rescue by reporter Gabriel Roxas and photographer John C. Wilson and for a game-show-style news promo by John Nally and Kellen Dargle. The latter win was the third straight for the pair in the promo category.
The station and University of Kentucky men's basketball Coach John Calipari had been nominated for an Emmy for special achievement for community service for the Hoops for Haiti telethon but lost to an autism program prepared by WCMH in Columbus. But Thomas said he thought the telethon helped cement the choice of WKYT as the station- excellence award recipient.
"The highlight of our entry that they showcased during the ceremony was Hoops for Haiti," he said.
Rival NBC affiliate WLEX (Channel 18) won an Emmy honoring graphic arts for animation by news director Bruce Carter as part of the Kentucky Derby coverage.
KET picked up two Emmys, including one for producer Gary Pahler for "Raptor Rehab," a Louisville Life segment that won for health/science/environment program. Producer Tom Thurman and producer/ director Nick Helton received an Emmy in the arts and entertainment program category for Harry Pickens — In the Garden of Music, an episode of KET's Kentucky Muse series.
WLEX wins May news ratings
WLEX's newscasts topped those of other Lexington stations in May. The NBC affiliate won six of the eight competitive newscast time slots in household ratings, dropping only noon and 12:30 p.m. to CBS affiliate WKYT.
"It was a very, very strong (ratings) book," said Carter, who credited the performance to the station "continuing to focus our product to the market's needs."
New radio station
Clear Channel recently launched a new hip-hop and R&B radio station in Lexington on 103.9 FM. Artists typically featured include Lil Wayne, Rihanna, Jay-Z and Snoop Dogg. The station covers Fayette County, as well as most of the metropolitan area, according to a Clear Channel statement. The station is also available on HD receivers at 104.5 HD2.
Driving those ads
You might have seen a number of advertisements on local TV stations recently asking you and other viewers to call your lawmakers to protect local TV.
Behind the commercials was the National Association of Broadcasters, which was concerned that Congress, during its debt-ceiling discussions, might try to take back and sell some of the public spectrum used to broadcast TV. Ultimately, the idea wasn't acted upon.
"All the local TV stations have made a huge investment in the digital transition to our facilities," said Chris Aldridge, general manager at ABC affiliate WTVQ (Channel 36) and television director in Lexington for the Kentucky Broadcasters Association. "We don't want to be put in the position where we're forced to give up spectrum."
Aldridge said the NAB specifically reached out to Kentucky stations because of the state's prominent congressional representatives, including Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell; Rep. Hal Rogers, who chairs the House appropriations committee; and Sen. Rand Paul, a leading figure in the Tea Party movement.
Tony McVeigh, a longtime Kentucky radio reporter, has left his position as Kentucky Public Radio's state Capitol reporter over a dispute stemming from his evaluation by KPR's board.
"I was taken aback by it," McVeigh said last week. "I just didn't feel the board gave me a fair and objective evaluation."
He said he didn't want to criticize the board because it has "a job to do, and I understand that" but noted that he thought many items in the evaluation were "more subjective than objective."
Chad Lampe, KPR's chairman, declined to discuss McVeigh's evaluation but said the organization was in the process of filling the position.
"We are committed to the Capitol bureau," Lampe said.
McVeigh, who is spending time in coastal Georgia, where he grew up, said he's weighing his plans, "and I do hope they include the people of Kentucky."
Christian television station WLJC has moved from cable Channel 98 on Insight Communications to Channel 19. "This new channel placement will make WLJC more accessible and visible to a wider audience," Insight spokesman Jason Keller said in a statement. "WLJC provides a tremendous amount of popular programming to our customers in Central Kentucky, and we're greatly appreciative of their partnership."
■ WTVQ evening anchor Megan Skaggs and her husband, WKYT reporter Dave Spencer, welcomed their first child, Mason. Skaggs is back anchoring the late evening newscasts with Tom Kenny and expects to return to the early evening newscasts in mid-September, News Director Doug Hogan said.
■ WTVQ morning co-anchor Doug High has been promoted to the rank of lieutenant commander in the Navy Reserve. High serves as a public affairs officer, having been accepted into the Navy's direct commission officer program in April 2002. High is assigned to the 6th Fleet Public Affairs Office in Naples, Italy, home of the Navy's European headquarters.
Comings and goings
■ WLEX has hired Adam Winer as a general assignment reporter to replace Janice Park, who left for the Fox affiliate in Baltimore. Winer comes from the NBC affiliate in Hagerstown, Md.
■ WTVQ has hired Michelle Ashworth as a reporter to fill a vacancy created when Cate Slattery moved to Cincinnati. Ashworth most recently worked in Abilene, Texas, and is a graduate of Arizona State University.