Monday, October 12, 2009

Only One New KVUE-TV Meteorologist


in the


KVUE TV (ABC-Austin) is cutting back on staffing in the weather department. You may have noticed that Chief Meteorologist Mark Murray has been splitting time with Mehgan Danahey for weeks with a little help from their past friends. Murray and Danahey’s pictures were the only faces in the Austin American-Statesman and on the KVUE TV web site.

Using Facebook , Murray announced tonight that Albert Ramon, the chief meteorologist of KZTV-TV in Corpus Christi will be joining the KVUE weather team. “Now, help me welcome the newest member of the KVUE Storm Team, Albert Ramon! Albert is from Corpus Christi, where he worked as the Chief Meteorologist at KZTV. Albert will normally be working our weekend newscasts.”

No longer will KVUE have four meteorologists on staff. “Yes, like many other stations around the country, we are a three-person weather department,” says Mark Murray. “Our two former weekend meteorologists, Tom Harris and George Kanuck, split their time (about 50/50) between the weather office and doing some news and environmental reporting for the newsroom. The difference with Albert is that he'll be spending almost all of his time working in the weather office. When he's not covering his regular weekend newscasts, he'll often be filling in for me and Meghan, as well as covering holidays and vacations, so staffing and scheduling really isn't an issue for us.”

KVUE TV is the #1 news, weather, and sports in Austin. The #2 station, KXAN TV (NBC) has four meteorologists who do stories during the week.

The tip-off that change was afoot at KVUE was on the air Sunday (October 11, 2009) when former KVUE meteorologist Ilona McCauley (a little help from my friends) said on the air, that she would be going away again. McCauley left KVUE and television news to pursue her dream of becoming a science teacher. She now teaches middle school science here in Central Texas.

Ramon will apparently start work this weekend. He is still on the KZTV-TV web site, but the web site, but the web site also has a posting for a new meteorologist. Murray’s Facebook announcement also included Ramon on the KVUE set.

Albert Ramon grew up in Beeville, Texas, right outside of Corpus Christi. His parents still live and work there. After high school, Ramon studied Atmospheric Science at Texas A&M University. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Broadcast Meteorology from Mississippi State University and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications in Media Studies from Texas A&M University Corpus Christi. “Honestly, I think that one of the things that attracted Albert to KVUE is that he was able to make the jump to a much larger television market, yet still be close to his family,” Murray says.

“There's a great story that I wasn't aware of until Albert came to for his interview,” Murray says. “When he was growing up, he would often visit his grandfather who lived out near Bastrop. Even as a young boy, Albert had a very strong interest in the weather. Many years ago, with the help of his grandfather, Albert wrote me a letter requesting an autographed picture. Believe it or not, he still has it!! So, of course, we had to hire him!”

Ramon joined KZTV Action 10 News in May, 2005. He worked all shifts at KZTV, including weekends, and mornings/middays, according to the KZTV site. As chief meteorologist, Ramon appeared on their 5 p.m., 6 p.m., and 10 p.m. newscasts.

Ramon was the only meteorologist in the Coastal Bend who earned both the American Meteorological Society's Television Seal of Approval and the National Weather Association's Seal of Approval. Both awarded for excellence in meteorology and broadcasting.

© Jim McNabb, 2009


King said...

Ok, this is a nit, so at the risk of being asked to join the grammar/meaning police:

"Albert Ramon grew up in Beeville, Texas, right outside of Corpus Christi."

I spent some of my 'growing up' years in Beeville, too. It's 60 miles from Corpus. This is like saying Temple is "right outside" of Austin. It isn't wrong, but it is a bit misleading.

Anonymous said...

Stop nit-picking, King. We all know what Jim meant.

It's good that Albert was able to make the jump to KVUE, especially since the future of KZTV's news deprtment is in doubt. KZTV has been sold to another TV station in Corpus Christi, which already has a news department.

By the way, Nielsen is planning to move to a system to track both TV and online video viewing of an individual and receive a single figure covering both activities.

With Nielsen planning to meet with media companies and other clients on October 16 to discuss how to move forward in a melding of TV and online audiences, let's take a look at how Austin TV stations are doing with their Web sites, which will become important players as TV stations look for ways to make more money.

KVUE has the most popular Austin TV Web site, according to Alexa, a company that ranks Web sites. Nationally, KVUE ranks as the 8,740th most popular U.S. web site.

News 8 Austin is the Capitol City's second most popular TV Web site, ranking 10,288th nationally. KXAN is ranked third in Austin, ranking 12,531th in the national picture; and KEYE is ranked dead last, pulling it at 36,175th nationally.

At the moment, Google is by far the most popular Internet search engine in the world, followed by Yahoo and Facebook, so it’s important for TV Web sites to have as many of their pages indexed by those three search engines. Page indexing is simply the number of pages from a web site that a search engine has in its database.

How are Austin TV news operations doing in having their Web pages in top-ranked Google's database?

The total number of Google Indexed Pages for is 104,000

The total number of Google Indexed Pages for is 58,400

The total number of Google Indexed Pages for is 28,000

The total number of Google Indexed Pages for is 23,900

The total number of Google Indexed Pages for ( (KEYE) is 4,990

KTBC, KXAN, News 8 Austin and KEYE obviously have a lot of work to do to catch up with KVUE in getting their Web site pages entered in Google's database and the databases of Yahoo and Facebook, two other extremely popular Web sites. The Web staffs at those TV news operations need to get with it, to help their stations' financial bottom line.

Anonymous said...

Cheap hire.

The Hypervigilant Observer said...

Well, weatherpeople come and go, don't they?

Austin's a still a minor TV market...even if it has recently cracked the Top 50. How can any station really afford 4 weatherpeople.?

Despite the changes...or maybe because of them...I have stayed with Jim Spencer at KXAN-TV.

I have never seen a weatherperson so enthused about his job.

I also liked the blond woman who apparently left KXAN to return home to Denver. She had potential.

One good thing I can say about Mark Murray at KVUE. He uses a larger global weather map...that includes Mexico. A wise move with our large Hispanic population.

But then Murray nearly ALWAYS BLOCKS the Yucatan, Cancun and Cuba portions...with his body.
Hey, get a clue, Mark! Step aside once in a while.

Lex Wadelski

Anonymous said...


The new weatherman isn't KVUE's only new addition. KVUE is getting a new reporter from an El Paso TV station.

KVIA-TV reporter Martin Bartlett is the new political reporter for KVUE, Marti will be covering state politics for the station.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of folks coming here from El Paso ... what happened to Mari Alvarez? She only lasted about a year at KVUE.

Anonymous said...

Actually, Albert's already on the air. His first newscast was Sunday morning, but he's been filling in on the morning/midday shift this week.

Anonymous said...

For the blogger who asked what happened to Mari Alvarez:

Alvarez has resurfaced as a reporter/anchor at her old station in Abilene. She's using her married name, Mari Cockerell, as she reports for KTXS-TV, the city's ABC affiliate

Anonymous said...

So Mari wasn't renewed?

Anonymous said...

Mari resigned and the station won't contradict that -- officially that is.

Anonymous said...

KXAN only has 1 meteorologist. That's Natalie Stoll. Jim, Shawn & Mary are top-notch, but not meteorologists.
Just sayin's all.