Sinclair Broadcast Group, owner of WJLA in Washington, ends its contract with Maureen Bunyan, one of Washington’s longest-serving anchors and one of the first black women in the country to helm a local evening broadcast.
Since taking over the station in 2014, Sinclair has let go a number of longtime anchors and reporters, including Leon Harris a few months ago. Farhi notes that the moves are cost-cutting measures, but Richard Prince, citing Farhi’s earlier reports on Sinclair, also notes that the decisions may have an ideological tinge to them:
The conservative-leaning Sinclair, based in the Baltimore area, is the nation’s largest owner of TV stations, with 173 in 81 cities nationwide. But it has developed a harrowing reputation among some of its employees.
When the D.C. market’s longtime anchor Gordon Peterson left WJLA in 2014, Paul Farhi reported in the Washington Post that Sinclair “has rapidly made over the station in its more conservative image.”