As part of a push to rebrand and revitalize newscasts struggling in the ratings, New Orleans ABC-affiliate WGNO has let go four on-air staffers and four station photographers.
Evening anchor Jessica Holly (pictured), reporters Christian Jennings and Glenn Boyd, and sports anchor Kristina Pink have all been cut loose at WGNO, according to the New Orleans Times-Picayune. Four photographers have also been let go.
The station says it plans to expand the “News with a Twist” programming, which debuted earlier this year in the 6 p.m. timeslot, into the 5 p.m. hour. “News with a Twist,” which news director Rick Erbach calls “a great alternative if you’re tired of traditional news,” will also air in place of the 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. newscasts on Saturday.
WGNO general manager John Cruse said the layoffs, which were announced in a staff meeting last Thursday, were because the “News with a Twist” model requires fewer staffers than a typical newscast.
“You have a tough advertising environment, but also the way people consume their news is different,” Cruse told the Times-Picayune. “‘News with a Twist’ has given WGNO an identity … we’re going to forge forward with this identity.”