Sunday, August 17, 2014

The Sunday 415 Media Poll: Who Was The Greatest SF Bay Area TV Anchor?

Dennis Richmond
 
Dave McElhatton


Van Amburg


Evan White


Kate Kelly


Marcia Brandwynne

Pete Wilson

Bob Jimenez

72 comments:

  1. You've made too short a list. No Wendy Tokuda or Jerry Jensen?

    But hands down, it goes to Van Amburg.

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    1. Wendy Tokuda?? Are you kidding me? She was an amateur compared to the others on this list. As a high school English teacher, I would cringe on election nights as Wendy would say, "Newsome is OUT AHEAD, Gonzalez is TRAILING BEHIND." She was the Queen of the Redundancy!!!

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  2. Not even close: Fred Van Amburg. He is the gold standard by which are all measured.
    Runner ups are Dave McElhatton and Dennis Richmond.

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    1. Agreed. Van Amburg was the king in his day. Big Mac was lovable. Dennis was rock steady.

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  3. I liked Van Amburg, but loathed his partner Jerry what's his name. But isn't that the case? The great ones always get "stuck" with someone who doesn't aid them! Dennis Richmond is probably my fav as even his partner's where good and the overall quality of KTVU of his era was spectacular with real "street cred" reporters. KTVU did have some mis-steps in that era. One obnoxious blonde haired guy totally bugged Dennis. I think he was a sports guy. Pete was just TOO full of himself and McElhaton too sweet. All the others I have NO quibbles with. THE "best" is a dumb question. One can argue of various levels of performance. Perhaps a "Parker" wine-rating would do best. I think all of the above our 90+ pts.

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  4. A dead heat between Dennis Richmond and Van Amburg..

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  5. Dennis Richmond. Why? Because I grew up watching him. For most people, the anchor they grew up watching is the "best" tv news anchor.

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    1. Good point. I never saw Mr. Van Amburg because for many years, we only had two channels, sometimes, three, where I lived near the Oregon border.

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  6. John Weston and Rod Sherry....I'm old.

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  7. Van,his reign wasn't just ratings,he was part of a revolution in media. Pete Wilson?yech. He was Bill O Reilly before there was a Bill O Reilly..just pressed from the same mold. Bob Jimenez was going great...then gone. Long before the days of the public ever knowing why the media does what it does.
    Eddie Alexander in sports would also be a trendsetter..Radnich stole with no shame Eddie's off the wall humor. The first time I heard Radnich it was obvious
    Pete Giddings wins weatherman.Like him or hate him(he sure got obnoxious as his body building hobby re made him..steroids?) he wasn't a Art Brown doing weather like all the rest.
    Marcia Brandwiynne juuuuust edges Wendy Tokuda as all time female. Others like Suzanne Saunders,Kate Kelly,Anna Chavez,left too soon. Dana King,another. Karna Small..big boufant 'do,first local sexy woman anchor.
    Ah...I went too long as it is. Just plenty of names to go around.

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    1. @11:33 AM, Pete Wilson the same as Bill O'Reilly??? Not EVEN close and that is an insult to Pete Wilson. If you ever got a chance to listen to his radio show on KGO before he passed, he was a highly intelligent, personable radio host who always took the high road unlike Bill O'Reilly.

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    2. 2:59, you're dealing with "Stan". He does not apply reason to anything.

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  8. Easily "Mean" Gene Okerlund

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    1. LOL. Will readers know the reference?!

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  9. Growing up in NY it was Roger Grimsby (used to be at KGO7 here).
    In SF I'll go with Van Amburg.

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  10. Three-way tie, IMHO: Van Amburg, Pete Wilson, John Weston.

    All the folks you pictured were excellent, but these three are the gold standard.

    - Greg from SF

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  11. Tough call, but I'll go with Van Amburg.

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  12. 1) Dennis Richmond 2) Evan White (nearly tied with Mr. Richmond (and) 3) Bob Jimenez.

    Best reporter 1) Evan White 2) Bob Jimenez 3) Dennis Richmond

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  13. I don't watch tv.

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  14. I'm not sure that I can gauge. All who were mentioned were good, as far as I'm concerned. But, to be an anchor in a market this size, they SHOULD be good.

    For the poster who said he/she is "old," remember Helen Bentley and Wanda Ramey?



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    1. Of course. Ramey hosted the noon news with Weston.....How about Skipper Sedley, Captain Fortune, Mayor Art, Captain Satellite, cartoon hosts all.

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  15. Just to give young folks an idea of how revolutionary ch7's "Happy New's was?.. Before?Anchors were stoic. Like Morticians delivering the news. Even Cronkite only showed a flash of emotion- getting wavery on John Kennedys death. Yet,it wasn't but a few short years after the ch7 "Good Guys",that even Walter Cronkite started to smile on the cute storys,do the Uncle Walter chuckle.
    All derived from KGO,Van, and 1969.

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  16. Worked with a lot of them. Loved Mac for his warmth and intelligence, admired Van for captaining the ship, but Pete Wilson and Anna Chavez (together, solo or with someone else) had all the qualities. That's no knock on any of the others, who each had superior individual strengths. Dennis Richmond was a perfect fit in what was the most finely tuned TV news department in the country.

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  17. And Tony would put you in the all-star street reporters list. Right up there with Vic Lee, Rita Williams, Rigo Chacon, Hank Plante, and Ben Williams.

    Pete and Anna's time together was too short.

    What are professional opinions of Richard Brown? Surprised a duo of two outsiders - he and Terilyn - lasted as long as they did.

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    1. Yes! Ben Williams . . . a longtime pro who passed away a couple of years ago. I remember watching him during the daytime when I was a kid.

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  18. I loved Pete Wilson and went to KRON when he went there. They were all really good, but spent the most time with Pete.

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  19. I always enjoyed Tony Russomanno's reporting. Where is he now?

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  20. Fred Van Amburg all the way!

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  21. I remember watching Pete Wilson when he was in Sacramento - he had the perfect balance of gravitas and warmth. When he was reading a news story you got the sense that he was aware how the viewer at home would receive the news.

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  22. Anna Chavez and Dennis Richmond.

    Wilson and Van Amburg? News should come without snark.

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  23. Historically, definitely Van Amburg. He and Jerry Jensen brought in the Happy Talk news format. His only drawback was his ego.

    As far as straight news, delivered with professionalism, class and no egomania - Dennis Richmond is the winner hands down by a million miles.

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  24. Bruce Nolan and Evan Baxter hands down. Surprised no one mentioned them.

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  25. Barbara Simpson was wonderful on Channel 2

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  26. Maybe it's me or maybe it's my cheap TV at the time, but half the time I can't understand what Dennis Richmond was saying. He just seems to mumble through the lines without any facial or visual cues about what he's talking about. Didn't have that problem with McElhatton, Wilson, kelly , or any of the other anchors. In fact, I have problem understanding Elaine Corrall or Leslie Griffith.

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  27. Does anyone remember the "Tuck and Fortner Report," ...(I think) on KTVU?

    I can't recall anything about the anchors, or the quality of the program. I only remember the widespread anticipation of someone messing up the names.







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  28. I loved Pete Wilson and his style/delivery, he's my pic!

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  29. Veronica De La Cruz.

    Who else can toss hair like that?

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  30. I don't remember Jimenez but all of the rest on your list were very good. If I had to pick one, I probably would go with Richmond. Also thought Elaine Corrall, who is not on this list, was very good.

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  31. Van Amburg in SF and Jerry Dunphy in LA.

    Wonder if Bill Van Amburg, prior broadcast news reporter in LA, is related.

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    1. I grew up in southern California in the 70s. Jerry Dunphy was great, no question.

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  32. John Weston, Van Amberg, Dennis Richmond, Pete Wilson, Dave McElhatton are the legacy names that should be on every list. From today's group...too early to tell. Frank Somerville, Dan Ashley, Ken Bastida and Raj Mathai all have a chance to get there names on that list....but all need more time to sort out who is the cream of the crop....eg. need a big event to occur to find out who really shines.

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    1. Bastida's bio on the PIX site:

      http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/personality/ken-bastida/

      How much more time does the guy need?

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  33. Yes, Bill Van Amburg is his son.

    Also, the senior Van Amburg's brother was the general manager of KABC during the early - mid 1980s. He was fired a few months before the KGO Van Amburg's contract dispute with the new Capital Cities owners.

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  34. Replies
    1. Rotten Tomatoes agrees!

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  35. Pete Wilson! Mayor of San Diego, Governor of California then Anchored the news in San Francisco, No One has those credentials! No One!

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    1. You are either dumb as hell or just trolling.

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    2. Actually, YOU are either dumb as hell or have no sense of humor.

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    3. @9:00 PM: Aren't you the same intern who does the scrolling stories graphic for KRON 4?

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  36. Hey, 1:35, thanks! I wish I had Rigo's connection with the community, Vic's dogged pursuit of stories, Hank's well-earned ownership of his beat, and Rita's EXHAUSTIVE interviewing skill, not to mention Mike Sugerman's savant-like writing ability. And 2:06, who is, by the way, NOT me, thank you, also. I enjoyed most of it myself! General assignment reporting was ideal for someone with ADHD. There was something new every day. It was like a laundry: in by 10, out by 6, but the world moved on. Now, I suppose I'm the guy on the Simpsons who says, "You MAY remember me as..."

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  37. The Mt. Rushmore: Van Amberg, Dennis Richmond, Pete Wilson, Dave McElhatton

    Female division: Elaine Corrall, Kate Kelly, Wendy Tokuda, Dana King

    Hot division (current):Gasia Mikagjklejhgcj, Juliette Goodrich, Heather Holmes, Peggy Bunker

    Brain dead division: Elizabeth Cook

    Up and Comer division: Ama Daetz, Mike Mibach, Raj Matha,

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    1. Overrated division: Wendy Tokuda

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  38. I'm 48,


    Van Amburg. I was just a kid but I could tell the man meant business and Dennis Richmond has been the only one close to him. Their styles differed; where Richmond was smooth, Amburg gave everything gravitas.

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  39. Roger Grimsby
    Saunders Shaw

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  40. Pete Wilson was excellent...God rest his soul. Incidentally whats up with KPIX lately, are they the front Media Group for the Santa Clara Whiners?! All they do is blah, blah, blah Levi's Stadium. Hype, hype, hype Santa Clara 49ers. Dang, its "only" a stadium, in a small suburban town, its not the Taj Mahal ?!

    Idk...but I think KPIX needs to move their operations down to the South Bay since they report about 60% of their news about that region?!

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  41. The crew of Paymar, Roz Abrams, Radnich and Mark Thompson on KRON back in the 80s was the best overall anchor crew I've seen in SF. I remember bursting out laughing at some of the banter between Thompson, Radnich and Paymar, while Roz was always a good sport about it.

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  42. Not in any order: Van Amburg, John Weston, Dave McElhatton, Dennis Richmond, Art Brown. Let's not forget Jerry Jensen. NO ONE TODAY (except for Dan Ashley) can hold a candle to these guys.

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  43. Rich, this is a great topic. I would have to pick Van Amberg as #1, followed by Dennis Richmond, Kate Kelly, Pete Wilson, and Bob Jimenez. Jimenez work is often overlooked but he was really a pioneer for Hispanic media folks and did a great job at KRON.

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  44. The greatest sports anchor in bay area history might be Viki Liviakis. She's doing the KRON weekend sports. She says 2-1 just perfect,and never EVER gives some dumb view of family parentage in society.
    I bet she can say "Sunny tomorrow- its summer" just as perfect too.

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  45. Don Hayward on KNTV

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  46. Roger Grimsby (Ch 7), Al Helmso (Ch 2)

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  47. If you were able to pick up a Sacramento station, you had 3 anchors who came close to the same level as Van Amburg, Dennis Richmond, or Dave McElhatton:
    KCRA-Stan Atkinson
    KXTV-Dick Cable
    KOVR-Dave Walker

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  48. Peter Wilson and Carolyn Johnson- both total pros

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  49. Mark Curtis--what a good guy
    Doug and Maggie on KNTV
    Jan Hutchins, the coolest news anchor of his time

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  50. Tossup between Amburg, Richmond and Wilson...pick'em...

    Forgot about Evan White-good anchor, but in the Amburg-Jensen heyday he couldn't keep up...

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  51. Leslie A Nichols, original KTVU 10 o'clock news man in 1958

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