Ticker: CBS News, C-Span, Fox Weather, MSNBC, Oscars

By Mark Mwachiro 

Profile picture of Kaci Sokoloff
  • CBS News has promoted head booker Kaci Sokoloff to lead a unified team of booking producers to support the entire CBS News & Station and CBS Media Ventures. Sokoloff becomes vice president of booking for news, stations and CMV. She will oversee and work closely with producers who book and coordinate interviews across CBS News’ local and global footprint. Sokoloff will jointly report to Terri Stewart, CBS News svp of domestic newsgathering, and Adrienne Roark for CBS Media Ventures and CBS Stations. “Kaci’s expanded role will help us deliver content of the highest caliber to audiences everywhere, whether it’s a breaking news story or celebrity get and everything in between,” Stewart said.
  • C-Span co-CEOs Rob Kennedy and Susan Swain are stepping down from their top roles in the network. Cablefax reports that Kennedy, also the network’s CFO, is looking to step away in mid-May, while Swain will linger a little longer and help with the transition. Matt Deprey, vp, finance, will take over as CFO. Kennedy and Swain have been in this position since 2012 when they took over from C-Span founder Brian Lamb.
  • Fox Weather’s Ian Oliver traveled to Minneapolis, MN, to take part in a polar plunge at Lake Nokomis Park over the weekend. Oliver braved the cold temps of the water to raise money for the Special Olympics. Ian Leonard, a meteorologist at the Fox 9 affiliate in Minneapolis, invited Oliver to take the plunge. Leonard has taken part in over 400 plunges during the past 15 years. Oliver did 15 live hits throughout the weekend, with the hits being dubbed “Freeze-Ian for a Reason.” Fox Weather is also turning this into a special to air on March 16. So far, $4.8 million has been raised for Special Olympics due to these plunges, with this past weekend being one of the biggest.
  • MSNBC on Monday launched its inaugural live events series, MSNBC Live, at The Showroom in Washington, D.C., with The March Fourth, which previewed the Super Tuesday contest and President Joe Biden’s State of the Union address on Thursday. In attendance were host and creative director Luke Russert, MSNBC president Rashida Jones, Steve Kornacki, Jen Psaki, Stephanie Ruhle, Biden 2024 principal deputy campaign manager Quentin Fulks, activist Sophia Bush and entrepreneur Nia Batts. Also present were Symone Sanders-Townsend, Marc Short, Maureen Orth, Bob Costa, Kate Bennett, Elizabeth Thorp, Michele Jaconi, Sena Fitzmaurice, Carol Lee, Mike Memoli, Gloria Story Dittus, Bob Barnett, Michael Steele, Anthony Coley and more. The event was a significant planting of the flag by MSNBC and continued a trend by MSNBC to invest in non-linear programming. Lauren Peikoff, executive producer of MSNBC Live Events, said, “Monday’s event was just the start of what we believe will be dynamic, thoughtful, news-making and collaborative live event series.”
  • In other MSNBC news, on Wednesday, the network is preempting its 8 p.m. ET show, All In with Chris Hayes, to present a special program focusing on the two remaining presidential candidates. Biden vs. Trump: 2024. It will be hosted by Hayes, Rachel Maddow, and Alex Wagner.
  • ABC News is heading west to Hollywood to provide special coverage for the upcoming Oscars. Good Morning America begins coverage from the red carpet on Thursday, March 7, and will air an Oscars After Party with post-show reactions and results on Monday, March 11. GMA3: What You Need to Know will be broadcast from Hollywood on Friday, March 8, and Monday, March 11. ABC News will also air a live pre-show, Countdown to Oscars: On the Red Carpet Live, on Sunday, March 10, from 1:00-4:00 p.m ET. ABC News Live Prime anchor and World News Tonight weekend anchor Linsey Davis and Good Morning America weekend co-anchor and World News Tonight weekend anchor Whit Johnson will host the special live from the red carpet at Hollywood’s Dolby Theatre.
  • CNN International anchor Bianca Nobilo is leaving the network after nine years. In a social media post, Nobilo said that March would be her final month at CNN. “Leaving my professional home of the last 9 years was a difficult decision,” she said. “From making an insipid tea for Tony Blair on my first day, to launching 3 shows across two networks. I’m so grateful.” Nobilo indicated she will be leaving the media industry and will be joining an unnamed tech company as an executive board member. Nobilo anchored the 4 a.m. ET international edition of CNN Newsroom alongside Max Foster, which he will now anchor solo. Another programming note from CNN International, Rahel Solomon now anchors the 11 a.m. ET hour of CNN Newsroom on CNN International and CNN Max.
  • Nearly two years after launching the U.K. linear channel, TalkTV will transition to digital-only via streaming and YouTube channels during the summer months. The news and opinion channel operated by News UK, which is part of the Ruper Murdoch empire, didn’t make a dent in the ratings in the competitive U.K. news market, trailing BBC News, Sky News and GB News. The writing on the wall for TalkTV came in February when its best-known presenter, Piers Morgan, who hosted a daily show on the network, announced he would be leaving to focus on his YouTube channel, Uncensored.