In an email to staff on Tuesday, WPIX news director Bill Carey announced that Wil Surratt is leaving his post as senior executive producer of the station’s 10 p.m. newscast.
While Carey’s email only went as far as to say that there were “opportunities for his proven talent,” sources close to Surratt tell TVSpy that he is nearing a deal to join CNN.
Before joining WPIX, Surratt headed a handful of CNN shows including “American Morning,” “NewsNight with Aaron Brown,” and “Anderson Cooper 360.”
WPIX brought on Surratt to revamp its evening newscasts. He has been serving as senior executive producer of WPIX’s 10 p.m. show since June of 2009.
Here’ the full email from Carey announcing Surratt’s departure:
As some of you have heard through the grapevine, Wil Surratt is leaving us, effective today, and will soon announce his return to network cable here in New York. More details about that will likely come out within the next week or so, we’ve been respectful of what Wil wants to share publicly, and patient as he weighed several offers. Wil earned that respect and patience, and if he had chosen to stay at PIX11, he would have never worried about what opportunities were out there for him. It’s safe to say there will always be opportunities for his proven talent.
This is a note to celebrate Wil’s accomplishments at PIX11 during the time he’s been back at the station. Starting with the 6:30pm newscast, Wil was the driving force for the most innovative local news programming in town, and he topped himself when given a chance to craft our 10 O’Clock news last year. Six months later, it is now an undisputed success in creativity, ratings and revenue. Wil leaves here knowing he has earned the lion’s share of the credit for those successes. As important, Wil takes pride and satisfaction from knowing the rest of the 10 O’Clock team will carry on… if not under his daily direction, then in the direction he pointed.
We will go about the formal work of finding Wil’s replacement, but we aren’t in a hurry, as the TEN is in the very capable hands of Saul Adams and Andrew Haag. John Houseman will be the primary news manager for matters about the TEN for the time being, and please don’t hesitate to ask any of the news managers if you have any questions.
Wil expects to enjoy a week or two off with his family before he starts the next chapter of his career. If you didn’t get a chance to see him in the newsroom today, we encourage you to reach out and thank him for all the contributions he’s made to PIX11.