TV Notes: KDKA-TV news director, Coleen Marren, leaving KDKA-TV post

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KDKA-TV news director Coleen Marren, who arrived at the station last July, is leaving after nine months to become news director at WTIC, a Fox affiliate in Hartford, Conn., where she was previously news director in the early 1990s. Ms. Marren is a Connecticut native.

Anne Linaberger, assistant news director, will again serve as interim news director while a search for Ms. Marren's replacement is conducted.

Ms. Marren said she'll have the opportunity to work in a multimedia facility that houses the TV station, website and Hartford Courant newspaper, and the opportunity to again live near her family and friends "makes it much more appealing, personally." But she won't return to her old office -- the TV station is no longer in the same facility.

"I've had an absolutely wonderful experience here," Ms. Marren said. "They're a terrific team, some of the best people in the news business at every level."

She cited both news stories -- the L.A. Fitness shooting, G-20, snowapalooza -- and a newsroom loss -- the death of KDKA consumer reporter Yvonne Zanos -- as moments during her tenure she will not forget.

"I will tell you the generosity of the people here, particularly during the Turkey Fund, was overwhelming to me," Ms. Marren said. "We still get money from the great people of this town. Since Yvonne's passing we've received close to $25,000 [for the Turkey Fund], basically unsolicited. Dennis [Bowman] still gets checks when he goes out to visit schools and they take up a collection for the Turkey Fund."

She described the quality of TV news in Pittsburgh as "high" and viewers as "loyal and passionate.

"We hear from them if we do something good or something wrong," she said. "And that's what makes a city work.

"I feel very good about what we've accomplished as a team here," Ms. Marren said. "It's very hard to leave. This is a great American city, but the only one thing that's going to trump that is going home." (Rob Owen, Post-Gazette TV editor)

'Dance' changes slated

"So You Think You Can Dance" is getting some new moves.

The Fox network said Monday that multiple changes are planned for the dance competition's upcoming seventh season.

The series is narrowing the finalist field from 20 dancers to 10 -- five women, five men -- with one contestant eliminated each week instead of two. Dancers will also be partnered with past contestants instead of each other for the first time. "So You Think You Can Dance" is scheduled to premiere May 27. (Associated Press)

First Published March 31, 2010 4:00 AM


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