Former Ch. 28 anchor Lissette Campos returns as community affairs director
Back when new general manager Rich Pegram first took over at Tampa ABC affiliate WFTS-Ch. 28, he told me that community involvement would become an important part of the station's focus.
To be honest, it's something many general managers say when they come to a station -- everybody wants local folks to feel like the station is THEIR station. But Pegram says he's putting the station's money where his mouth is, hiring former WFTS morning and weekend anchor Lissette Campos to rejoin the staff as community affairs director. She joins the WFTS staff on Sept. 24.
Campos will report a 3- to 5-minute report on an area charity, community group or issue for WFTS's noon news each day. She'll also record 30- to 45-second listings of community events similar to the public service announcements other stations offer. Such work will occupy about 70 percent of her time, according to Pegram, focusing on bringing good news to their airwaves.
"The objective is simple: Part of a TV station is making sure you serve the whole community," said Pegram, who established similar positions at stations he ran in Indianapolis and Richmond, Va. "I know it sounds a bit hokey, but we take it seriously. And it's just smart business."
At a time when many TV stations are laying people off -- especially people who aren't visible on air -- it does mark a significant move to hire a former anchor for such work.
Campos came to WFTS in 2001 as morning anchor, hired from Miami to spark the a.m. newscasts. In 2003, she was moved to the weekend reports and by 2005 she had left journalism to serve as public affairs manager for Walt Disney World in Orlando.