WGN anchor Mark Suppelsa sent a note to his colleague Thursday telling them that he’s retiring at the end of the year. Chicago TV insider Robert Feder got a hold of the note and delves into why now, and who may be next in line at the Tribune (but perhaps soon-to-be Sinclair) station.
WGN executives were said to be surprised by Suppelsa’s decision. With no clear succession plan in place, it’s likely that his replacement will be determined by Sinclair bosses. Among insiders, possible candidates include Ben Bradley, who recently joined WGN as 4 p.m. anchor after 14 years at ABC-owned WLS-Channel 7; early morning anchor Dan Ponce, and weekend anchor Tahman Bradley.
“My wife and I have for years planned carefully for this period off our lives,” Suppelsa, 55, writes in his note. Now that our kids are out of college and about to launch their own careers, we decided we are ready to wind down ours.
Suppelsa has worked for three Chicago stations: 10 years at WMAQ, followed by 5 years at WFLD and the last 10 years at WGN. Earlier in his career, Suppelsa worked for WFRV in Green Bay, and KSTP in Minneapolis/St. Paul.
“I look forward to the remaining few months with one of the truly unique TV news organizations in the country. It’s been a humbling honor to be a part of it for nearly 10 years,” Suppelsa writes. “Thank you for all of your remarkable support.”