With its evening newscasts continually getting low ratings, Great American Broadcasting’s NBC affil WDAF has made a major change in its evening-news anchors. Kelly Minton has replaced veteran Cynthia Smith on the 6 p.m. news – Minton already had replaced Smith at 10 p.m. after Smith gave up the late slot after being ill for many months. (Smith eventually returned to her 5 and 6 p.m. co-anchor duty.)
The most recent change raised some eyebrows among broadcast observers, since Smith, a 14-year vet at WDAF, had enjoyed a wide popularity among viewers.
According to g.m. Earl Beall, the change was made to obtain greater continuity of personnel at 6 and 10 p.m., with Minton now serving as co-anchor with Phil Witt on both newscasts.
News director Mike McDonald said, “The move respects Cynthia’s personal preference and allows us to provide the audience with preferred anchor consistency.”
Smith continues to co-anchor at 5 p.m. with veteran Bob Thill.