New anchor for KXLY-4 depressurizes
By Jim Kershner
A new KXLY-4 anchor will make his debut Monday night, and he has plenty of big-time, big-market experience.
Richard Brown has anchored at KGO in San Francisco, CNN in Atlanta, WCBS in New York and at the Global Television Network and CTV in Toronto.
He has reported live from Rwanda and Zaire, covered the G-7 Economic Summit, anchored a papal visit and interviewed five Canadian prime ministers.
And he’s coming to Spokane because, after 23 years in TV news, he has had enough of big-market pressure for a lifetime.
He will join Marianne Mishima at 5 p.m., 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. Mark Wright, Mishima’s former co-anchor, will leave those broadcasts, although he may stay with KXLY in a different capacity.
“We’re hopeful that he will stay with us,” said news director Paul Brandt.
Meanwhile, Brandt is pleased to have landed Brown. Brown’s last job was a seven-year stint at KGO in the Bay Area, which he left a little more than a year ago.
“That was a turning point for me,” Brown said. “I was trying to figure out whether to continue what I was doing, or do something else.”
He knew he no longer wanted the “huge amount of pressure” that comes with big-market stations. So he decided to put his years of experience to work as a talent coach, flying to stations around the country and teaching the trade to reporters and anchors. He and his wife, June, moved to Olympia, where they have been for just over a year. They have a 21-year-old daughter in veterinary technology school in Denver.
Yet when the job at KXLY came up, the temptation was too great.
“I miss the daily grind, miss working with a group of people every day, putting out a newscast,” said Brown.
He said the situation was perfect for him: a medium-sized market in the Northwest. He and his wife, both from the same small town in Saskatchewan, will spend the next few weeks looking for a house in Spokane.
Wright was all right
Brown sounds like a quality addition, but a lot of people are probably wondering why Mark Wright had to take the fall. You might as well chalk it up the the pragmatic and numbers-driven world of TV.
It certainly wasn’t a problem of quality. Wright has been refreshingly open and likable in his nearly two-year stint as a main anchor. There is no trace of the jaded, the hypocritical or the calculated in his style or delivery. He is professional and smart without being smug. He has a lot of fans.
Good things lie ahead for Wright, either here or wherever he goes.
Sunday, September 20, 1998