'SoCal Connected' gets new KCET season and exec producer

karen-foshay-kcet.jpgKaren Foshay. KCET photo

KCET has given the green light to an eighth season for the award-winning SoCal Connected and also brought back a familiar face to oversee the news show. Veteran investigative reporter and producer Karen Foshay has been named the executive director for news programming at KCETLink Media Group and will be executive producer of "SoCal Connected." Foshay was a senior producer at the show from 2007 to 2012 and won a Peabody and two Columbia University-Alfred I. duPont awards. SoCal Connected retrenched around then and Foshay went to KPCC, then Al Jazeera America and recently finished up a year-long reporting stint at KCRW. Foshay has reported in the past for KCAL-9 in Los Angeles, CBS News and "Dateline NBC."

KCET says the eighth season of SoCal Connected with Val Zavala anchoring will launch in the fall. Three specials are scheduled to air this summer: on environmental justice, what tourism is doing to Joshua Tree National Park and "the business of 'going green.'"

The former PBS station, now based in Burbank, also says it now has 11 series in production or development and will be receiving $63 million in spectrum auction proceeds.

Awards season continues

The Peabody Awards announced this year's news category winners on Tuesday. They include KNTV in the Bay Area, CNN, NPR, "This American Life" and a collaboration between ProPublica and The Texas Tribune. Full list of winners

The Regional Edward R. Murrow Award winners for 2017 also were announced Tuesday by the Radio Television Digital News Association. That's 751 regional awards across the country in 16 categories. Locally, KNX-AM won for breaking radio news coverage of last June's UCLA shootings, CBS2 News at 11 won for breaking news, KCRW's Anna Scott won for A Day in the Life: Homeless on Skid Row and David Weinberg for "Mr. Fries Man," KCRW's Good Food blog won for website and MEL Films in Venice won for overall excellence among "small digital news operations." All winners

Also: The 2017 Webby Awards

End of an era at NPR

robert-siegel-npr.jpgRobert Siegel, who is 69, will step down later this year as the senior co-host of NPR's "All Things Considered" after 30 years in the chair. NPR says it will conduct a national search for a new co-anchor to share duties with Ari Shapiro, Audie Cornish and (here in Culver City) Kelly McEvers.
"This is a decision long in the making and not an easy one," Siegel said. "I've had the greatest job I can think of, working with the finest colleagues anyone could ask for, for as long a stretch as I could imagine. But, looking ahead to my 70s (which start all too soon) I feel that it is time for me to begin a new phase of life. Over the next few months, I hope to figure out what that will be."

Fighting fake news

Jimmy Wales, the co- founder of Wikipedia, has launched WikiTribune as a crowd-edited, crowd-funded collaboration of professional journalism and volunteer fact checking to put out "real" news and fight fake news. Wales tweets: "I am making something new. I hope you like it." Nieman Lab, CNN


bannon-tny-crop.jpgConnie Bruck, the LA-based writer for the New Yorker, reports on how Hollywood remembers Steve Bannon. Sample: "These days, Bannon is a dishevelled presence in the Oval Office, but he cut a different figure in Beverly Hills, where he looked the part of a Hollywood executive—fast-talking, smartly dressed, aggressively fit, carrying himself with what one former colleague described as an “alpha swagger.” He worked out of an impressive office on Canon Drive. He was passionate and knowledgeable about film, and boasted about his connections, his production credits, and his background in mergers and acquisitions at Goldman Sachs. He was a Republican, but not dogmatic, and he tried not to let his political beliefs get in the way of his work."

The Huffington Post is no more

lydia-polgreen-newsonomics.jpgIt's now officially HuffPost, with Arianna's blessing. New editor-in-chief Lydia Polgreen says the sites will go after “a much broader audience,” including Trump voters. Michael Calderone, Newsonomics, Letter from the editor

Media notes

hunter-greene-si-cover.jpgNotre Dame High School (in Sherman Oaks) pitcher and shortstop Hunter Greene might go first in baseball's June draft and makes the cover of Sports Illustrated... What it was like to serve on the Rodney King jury in 1992, from the late foreman and journalist Kathleen Neumeyer, at LAist... Why are there still empty lots 25 years later? Earl Ofari Hutchinson... How a team of outsiders at The New York Times got The Daily podcast to 20 million downloads and streams... The New York Times reviews "Obit," the documentary about its own obituary desk... "Fox & Friends" co-anchor Heather Nauert is moving to the Trump Administration as spokeswoman for the State Department... Modernism advocate Chris Nichols leads a tour of Armet and Davis coffee shops... Robert Landau's fun 2012 book on the rock and roll billboards of the old Sunset Strip, and the tale of the missing Paul McCartney head, get a fresh round of PR on KPCC's The Frame... Hannah Karp, music reporter at the Wall Street Journal, is going to Billboard as news director. She succeeds Shirley Halperin, who went to Variety as executive editor for music. Per Fishbowl... Del Quentin Wilber, hired last year to cover the Justice Department for the LA Times Washington bureau, began Tuesday at the Wall Street Journal covering Justice and the FBI.

Clickbait of the day

With City Hall declaring Tuesday to be La La Land Day in Los Angeles to help goose downloads and DVD sales for the movie and sell tickets to a Hollywood Bowl performance, the LA Times website offered up 15 other films worthy of their own official day in Los Angeles. We're against all "days" that spring from the cubicles of marketers and paid-by-the-post bloggers, but the Times roundup of movies set in SoCal is OK — the usual "Big Lebowski," "Blade Runner," "LA Story" etc. They did miss the opportunity to remind people of the under-appreciated 10 Items or Less, the low-budget 2006 buddy movie in which Morgan Freeman, an aging actor from Brentwood, and Paz Vega, a grocery clerk, spend an amusing day together in and around the city of Carson. With appearances by Jonah Hill, Jim Parsons, Danny DeVito and Rhea Perlman. Here's the trailer.

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