WDSU Names News Director

By Kevin Eck 

Akili Franklin has been named news director at New Orleans NBC affiliate WDSU.

Franklin, who replaces Jonathan Shelley, will start her new role on Monday. She came to the Hearst-owned station in January as assistant news director after working at WVTM in Birmingham, Ala.

“As a native of New Orleans, Akili brings the ideal blend of excellent news judgment and a deep appreciation and understanding of our region and culture,” said WDSU president and GM Joel Vilmenay. “She has a passion for storytelling and an absolute commitment to journalistic integrity. We look forward to her leadership in the newsroom.”


She started her career at WWL in New Orleans in 2002. She moved to WPBF in West Palm Beach, Fla., then worked at WFOR in Miami before joining Hearst as a news producer at WYFF in Greenville, S.C., Franklin started at WVTM in 2015.