WRAL TV

New anchor teams, weather system, newsroom coming to WRAL

Posted September 20, 2011
Updated September 27, 2011

WRAL News

— Sept. 27 is the big day: Two new anchor teams, another new weather innovation and a renovated newsroom for the top-rated television station in the Raleigh-Durham-Fayetteville market.

Veteran newsman David Crabtree welcomes 18-year WRAL News anchor Debra Morgan as his partner on the 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. newscasts.

Morgan remains with her longtime partner Gerald Owens at 11 p.m. Owens takes over at 5:30 p.m. with new partner Jackie Hyland. Owens and Hyland will also anchor WRAL’s 10 p.m. news on FOX 50.

Hyland is an award winning journalist and former network correspondent. Her career path includes anchoring and reporting for ABC’s World News Now, ABC News, Good Morning America, WPIX, CNBC and WCBS in New York and WFAA in Dallas.

“We're thrilled to add Jackie to our outstanding team,” WRAL-TV Vice President and General Manager Steven D. Hammel said in a statement. “She excels during breaking news and coverage of major stories. Along with her colleagues, she will bring our viewers coverage with heart and the community focus for which WRAL News is known.”

Longtime news anchor Pam Saulsby will be pursuing other opportunities outside of the station. She will continue co-anchoring the noon newscast with Bill Leslie until later this fall. Pam’s final 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. newscasts were last week.

“Pam has been an essential member of this station’s news and community efforts for 20 years,” Hammel said. “She’s well known for being an ambassador for children and women, especially with our community partner at the Susan G. Komen Foundation. We wish Pam nothing but the best in her new journey.”

Saulsby spent 20 years with the station, winning the Distinguished Woman of North Carolina Award, two regional Emmys and numerous community awards.

Reporter/Anchor Cullen Browder will now focus full time on the WRAL Investigates unit.

“We have a deep commitment to investigating local issues,” WRAL News Director Rick Gall said in a statement. “Cullen is an award-winning investigative journalist. We feel our viewers are best served by having him on the street full time, exposing waste and wrongdoing.”

New anchor lineup:
WRAL News at 5 p.m. – David Crabtree & Debra Morgan
WRAL News at 5:30 p.m. – Gerald Owens & Jackie Hyland
WRAL News at 6 p.m. – David Crabtree & Debra Morgan
WRAL News at 10 p.m. on Fox 50 – Gerald Owens & Jackie Hyland
WRAL News 11 p.m. – Gerald Owens and Debra Morgan

Read full bios here:

Another weather innovation

WRAL News continues its tradition of weather innovation, launching an interactive, high-definition system with 3-D storm tracking, an exclusive FutureCast tracking model and a StormThreat feature that predicts tornado, thunderstorm, hail and flooding probability.

“We have a total commitment to viewer safety,” Chief Meteorologist Greg Fishel said in a statement. “The new system, coupled with the exclusive technology in our DualDoppler5000 radar, our second live radar that covers the Fayetteville and Sandhills area and our WeatherCall personal warning service, will save lives during severe weather.”

The new HD WeatherCenter also now features recreation-specific forecasts, a ComfortCast for outdoor events and an exclusive Pain Index that ranks atmospheric conditions for those who suffer from arthritis and joint pain.

Renovated newsroom

America’s first all-HD newsroom, which debuted January 2001, is undergoing a facelift as well. The renovated WRAL HD newsroom will showcase the station’s big coverage of big stories, local investigations, severe weather coverage plus web and social media integration. Viewers will also notice a contemporary change to the graphics and music.

The new anchor teams, weather system and newsroom renovation debut Sept. 27 at noon.