Memphis NBC affiliate WMC has begun the process of building a weather department that is not led by chief meteorologist Dave Brown. The 37-year-veteran announced Wednesday he would scale back his hours, and appear exclusively on the 6 p.m. news, starting in September:
“I have asked for a reduced schedule at WMC Action News 5,” he explained. “I am not retiring, but feel this is the proper time to begin a transition to fewer hours in the workplace. I have worked since the age of 10. I have enjoyed a 52 year career in broadcasting, including 37 years so far here at WMC. For many of those years I have worked a six-day week and have worked nights since 1973.”
He continued, “I have been blessed with the support of my employers, my co-workers and my family. I am also grateful for the tremendous support I have received from our viewers. Many of those viewers have asked me not to retire, so this is a compromise that will give me more time to enjoy activities that I have not been able to do. I am in good health and look forward to enjoying entertainment and sports events and to traveling more. I want to emphasize that this is completely at my request, and thank WMC for indulging me as I continue my career in this reduced schedule.”
The station has named Ron Childers managing meteorologist. He will anchor the 5 p.m. and 11 p.m. newscasts. Childers has worked mornings in Memphis for 25 years.
Two new additions will also be joining the weather team; Spencer Denton from WAAY in Huntsville and Andrew Kozak, meteorologist at Tulsa ABC affiliate KTUL. Kozak announced the move on Twitter Wednesday afternoon:
— Andrew Kozak (@Andrew_Kozak) August 21, 2014
If Kozak’s name sounds familiar, it may be because Kozak has found some viral fame for his occasional rhyming forecasts: