Saturday, March 18, 2006

Where are they now?

Today, we feature former WBRE reporter Justin Pizzi.

Like most people who work at WBRE, Pizzi's trip started on I-81. While at Syracuse University, he reported for WSYR-AM until graduation. Heading south on the interstate, he landed in Binghamton, and spent two years at WBNG.

Wash, rinse, repeat. South on I-81 again, and Wilkes-Barre was the next stop. From 2003 to 2005, Pizzi was a general assignment reporter for WBRE. He threw in some anchoring as well. And when Pizzi's contract was up, the southbound trek continued.

Where is he now? Pizzi is now a reporter for WCAU in Philadelphia. A logical move, since he is a native of the city of Brotherly Love. RANDOM FUN FACT: Pizzi's father is the president of Tasty Baking, and no, he's not getting you any free Tastykakes.

(NOTE: I was unable to find a picture of Pizzi from his WBRE days; the above is from his time at WBNG.)


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pizzi's a good guy, talented and has that "clue," the one that most do not have. Some of us more seasoned(groan)broadcasters used to call it savvy - you either have it, or you do not. He does.

Now, here's a suggestion for a thread some one of these days; how about we take a look at those who came, went, and left not a single footprint in the market? There are literally dozens of names that wouldn't ring even a distant bell with 99% of viewers in this market, and let's define the market as being either side of that diagonal across the three hour drive from far northern Wayne County to the Centre/Clinton County line.

Actually, how about compiling a list of reporters/anchors who have passed through here in the, let's say, past ten years. Just a suggestion, Howie, it's your blog, sir.

11:30 PM  
Anonymous Also ran from Nexstar said...

Justin is indeed a good reporter, and I'm not surprised to see where he ended up. WBRE nearly sent him out of the business. I guess he and Paul Stueber never saw things the same. Hell, when Justin's last shift was over, I swear I could smell burning rubber in the newsroom.

1:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

One person who made a BIG name for himself: Bill O'Rielly. He got his start at WNEP.

3:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here's some forgettable names: WNEP's Sean Bolen and WYOU's Mollie Halpern. They both seemed to disappear as soon as they arrived. Whatever happened to them?

4:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, he was a good guy. Better than most that still labor in this market. But with all of three years experience under his belt, at the time, he "knew it all." Just wondering if Murrow was that gifted.

8:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nobody "knows it all" after just three years. The talent in question probably just THINKS he knows it all. I never met the guy, but he seems to be a stuck up, wet-behind-the-ears, Mr. Know-It-All jerkoff. I've been in this business over ten years, and I have never claimed once to "know it all." I'm still learning new things every day.

I find it disgusting that someone with only three years experience is now working in Philadelphia. Disgusting.

Notice how our cracked moderator does NOT deny that he works for Nexstar!! HAHAHAHA!

12:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Talk about wet behind the ears. I can't believe WYOU replaced Mollie Halpern with Laurie Monteforte who had zero television reporting experience.

12:39 PM  
Blogger Howard Beale said...

I have no idea what you're talking about. If you're referring to me not denying that Pizzi worked for Nexstar...well...duh. If you're referring to me not denying that I work for Nexstar, well, I never confirmed it either. I won't confirm or deny any part of my identity.

12:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

HB, You have to know when to HOLDem and when to fold 'em. Right?

1:09 PM  
Blogger Howard Beale said...

I know when to confirm, and when to deny. This ain't one of those times. :)

1:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Some of the reporters Nexstar picked up are plain cheap ! It's well-known that many of their recent hires were out-of-work Nexstar reporters from distant markets. They came here for little-to-no pay just to get out of the unemployment line. SO, what does that say for the workmanship at both 22 and 28.

Monteforte had NO experience in TV, except for an internship, as has already been indicated in a prior post.

2:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hiring Monteforte did make sense, at least for her job. Nexstar wanted someone familiar with the Poconos, and she did report for WSBG radio previously.

As for her abilities, I've seen worse from people in this market who have more years on her.

2:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nexstar doesn't care about the workmanship at WYOU or WBRE that is why they get rid of expensive talent and pick up reporters with no talent, they save a bundle. Nexstar makes the amount of money they want off of the crap that they put on the air and that is all they care about. If they could X amount of money off of hiring fourth graders they would. But, you would think that one of the Nexstar management types would realize that they could probably make a lot more money if they actually gave a damn. Just my opinion.

8:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Laurie is inexperienced, but at least she's eager and willing to learn about reporting. She had an internship at WNEP. That couldn't hurt. There are good teachers at 16.

8:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Really really good question, where is Sean Bolen? Now that I think of it, he came and left in the click of a remote. Where'd he go and what happened?

Also, everyone saying Laurie Monteforte is a joke, I think that you should tone down a bit. Yes, she has no true prior tv experiance and she ain't the best in the market, but she does a decent job. In fact one night not so long ago I was flipping through the channels when I found her doing a live shot, and she did a commendable job. Keep up the good work Laurie.

Oh, and by the way, this site is for the obvious, not for guessing who Beale is or where he works. If it weren't for him we'd still be gossiping on the local stuff by post it's and sharpies. Keep up the good work.

9:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not so great reporters? Hmmm, who here remembers Diana Ako? How about Jill Ross? Jocelyn Lazerus? Dave Goldberg? Yeah, those were the days, when you send a reporter out to a story, and complaints about their behavior would arrive by phone well before the reporter would arrive by newscar back to the station.

11:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The suggestion to list those "who came, went, and left not a single footprint in the market?" is so ignorant. ((First of all, there is no need to put a comma after 'went' so learn basic grammer, ok?)) To say that certain reporters/anchors have "not left a single footprint in the market" leaves me to believe that you do not truly understand the power of the media. And, I'm presuming you may be in a position where you don't get a lot of glory. Reporters always make a footprint with every story they write. As do producers ect, etc. As far as viewers not being able to remember names -how could they? Hundreds, probably thousands of people have been on-air in this market over the years. Afterall, this is just a medium market and only a stepping stone for most "talent". Plus, if you aren't from here there is little chance you'd want to stay in this depressed area. On-air talent come to fulfill their contract, hone their skills and move on. That's why there is a list of reporters/anchors who have passed through the area. To what avail would the list be anyway? No one is totally forgettable because in one way or another they made a difference in somebody's life with their stories -especially if they were a good reporter. As far as the names you mentioned -can't say I know what either one is doing now but they must not be so forgettable if their names were mentioned. As far as Justin Pizzi is concerned, it saddens me to think that someone would begrudge his move to Philly rather than be happy for him. Besides, he is just a freelancer. TV people can be cruel.

11:29 PM  
Blogger Howard Beale said...

Wilkes-Barre/Scranton seems to be one of those markets where people decide to stay. True, there have been plenty of reporters who came in, did their two-year contract, and went out the door. But others have come in, and decided they would stick around. Just look at WNEP, where people tend to stick around for a few years. WBRE and WYOU also have their seasoned veterans as well.

Why do people decide to stay? It's possible they like the station (or more likely, the station likes them), or they like the area. Sure, Wilkes-Barre and Scranton may not be the hot spots to live, but northeast and central Pennsylvania is a great place, if you ask me. Where else can you get Old Forge pizza and a cold Yuengling to wash it down? :)

To say that some reporters are "forgetable" is not necessarily an insult. When you've got familiar faces on your TV, like Marisa Burke, Andy Mehalshick, and Vince Sweeney, you tend to forget about the two-year people. Still, there are contract players who have left a lasting impression on people in this market. Who they are is up for individual determination, but fulfilling your contract and moving on isn't a sign of a bad reporter.

As for all the talk about Laurie Monteforte, just remember, some of us were once inexperienced reporters as well. Hell, I cringe when I see the work I did when I started! But I am surprised that she got her first TV job in a medium-sized market. Most people who start out end up in some bottom-feeder market like Watertown, N.Y. For Monteforte to start in Market 54, it says something about her potential.

2:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Getting back to Pizzi, he's probably one of the best reporters this market had seen in quite a while. Despite dealing with a maniacal boss, he always went after the story and in my opinion, did a great job in bringing it to the viewers. I think losing him, was once again numb nuts Nexstar at its finest.

8:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey, Ms. Mensa, you really do make things way too easy. So much so, I almost feel guilty. Time to go to school, and here comes today's lesson. Now listen and learn, this is what you wrote...

***First of all, there is no need to put a comma after 'went' so learn basic grammer, ok?***

Are you really that uneducated? That comma falls under the heading of acceptable usage; you can use it or not, it's the writer's choice. I knew that by fourth grade. Speaking of commas, you failed to use one where you should have, can you guess where? I doubt it. And, this is really beautiful, you misspelled grammar. You wrote grammEr, it's grammAr. You are a boob.

Perhaps more importantly, it isn't a matter of grammar(note correct spelling), it's a matter of syntax and punctuation. Yeah, you really are a boob.

I love being scolded by someone who isn't nearly as smart as I am, and I ain't that smart, it's one of life's little joys.

1:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mixed feelings on young Mr. Pizzi. He appeared to be a nice kid, but he did come across as a "know it all." I think we were all that way once. The kid has a bright future.

6:12 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Arrogance is the most dreaded of sins.

To know it all, but not let on is the a prized trait in this tumultuous business.

Mr. Pizzi was perceived to be a know-it-all in this market, and sources inform me he hasn't changed one bit in Philadelphia.

Good luck and cheers to those who think they know it all.

12:45 PM  
Anonymous Erica said...

Hey, Laurie Monteforte had experience as a videographer and some reporting on channel 13 news. Then she worked for wsbg radio news. Then her wnep internship THEN hired for wyou. "Inexperienced?" Yes she's young but she worked her butt off to get just where she is. AND to boot she does an excellent job reporting and has only been improving. She does a better job than many reporters I see on television. "Untallented?" Please. You need to keep an eye on her because she's got loads of talent AND the drive. Not to mention a great writer. Smart. She knows this buisness is hard and taking her oportunities very seriously. I don't understand the previous posts critisizing her. Are you jelous or rather upset just because she's young? Please don't think this job just popped in her lap. She worked for it and deserves more credit then some are giving and it's a shame.

4:27 AM  
Anonymous Erica said...

oh and as Howard Beal mentioned, people must cringe at reporters first clips. Laurie I can't believe how much she's improved and yes has awesome potential. She's thinking about everything as she goes along. And yes she's in a good market level. That does not give her credit saying she's too inexperienced. I would think they would not hire a floundering newbie. Laurie's got a great head on her shoulders and there's a reason why they hired her. I think Howard Beal mentioned the key word is "potential." She already does a great job now and she's relatively new. Also she looks younger than she really is. You'd be surprised. I don't know if that has anything to do with it as well.

4:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm in the Philly market and must say Justin is a joke here. The job is his thanks to his Daddy's money, power and influence - not talent. Viewers often laugh at his reports and immitate the efiminate presentations. He can not be taken seriously on cutting edge real news stories. He can hold his own on the fluff pieces. He better hope there are some big blizzards heading to Philly so he will ahve something to cover. The race for Mayor will not be his story!

12:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think we will see Laurie on Fox news one of these days. Thats where all the good newscasters and reporters end up.Also the georgous ones
Julie Bidwell (Bandaras)
Amy Kellog

3:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

He is where he is because of Daddy. Daddysed to be the President of the Chamber of Commerce in Philadelphia. Do you think he has pull. I knew this kide when he visited his aunt in Havertown, Pa. A stuck up, spoiled, know it all then. Find your own way Pizzi, like the rest of us.

6:31 AM  

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