Tonight is Carolyn Johnson's last evening at KGO-TV before moving down south to become the new Noon and 6 PM news reader for KNBC in LA.
This marks a sad chapter in Bay Area TV News because clearly Johnson didn't want to leave the Bay Area but she also wasn't willing to restructure her contract and take a significant pay cut--something that was asked by cost-cutting Disney.
Johnson won't be the last to leave ABC/SF --others simply won't have their contracts renewed, it's as simple as that and all the more confusing and controversial when you consider Disney is raking in record profits.
Too bad the Mickey Mouse people have begun a chop-chop policy at some of their big O and O's, (Owned and Operated), stations and at the heart of their chopping is those who make the biggest money. And those who make too much money deemed unnecessary will be either bought out, asked to take a huge pay cut or simply non-tendered.
Johnson has family roots in the LA area so her career and family issues will not be adversely affected. In fact, she's making a lot more money and should help out a legendary LA station in dire need of a name and experienced newswoman like Johnson. Sometimes things happen for a reason.
Meanwhile at KGO, the search for Johnson's replacement appears to be in-house at this point with weekend anchor, Ama Daetz, according to insiders, as the leading candidate to replace Johnson. Nothing is set in stone yet but we should know soon.
This is a major loss for 900 Front. Johnson is not only a hard-working, smooth and engaging news anchor but her reporting on medical and science issues added a lot of substance to KGO's news products. In addition, Johnson and fellow primary anchor, Dan Ashley, were a winning team and developed solid years of being one of the best 1-2 teams in the market.
Expect a lot of surprises and emotion taking place on Channel 7's newscasts tonight.
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