The new owner of WLNE-TV/ABC6 continued its restructuring efforts at the Providence TV station this week, shuffling some anchor positions, adding new on-air reporters and laying off some long-time staff members.
On Monday and Tuesday, the station laid off four staff members, including on-air reporter Josie Guarino.
Guarino, who joined the station in the fall of 2002 was let go, station manager Steve Doerr confirmed today.
She had been an associate producer for CBS news show 48 Hours before arriving at ABC6 and had worked on stories about the murder of a Cape Cod fashion writer, according to a profile that had been posted on the station’s Web site.
That profile was no longer on abc6.com today, but could be viewed through Internet services that archive Web pages.
The others who lost their jobs were Bob Dow, a studio camera operator and live-truck editor, who had been with Channel 6 for 27 years; Tammy Santos, assistant business manager who worked at the station for more than 20 years; and Steven Caron, senior graphics designer with nearly 12 years at the station.
On Monday, WLNE announced the addition of three new staff members and the shuffling of some anchor spots. John Deluca, who anchored the morning and noon news, now anchors the 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. newscasts with the recently hired Allison Alexander.
Paul Mueller, a reporter/ anchor in Seattle, will join the station in about a week and be one of three anchors at 4 p.m. and a reporter for the 6 and 11 p.m. shows.
Tom Langford was named the station’s morning and weekend anchor. Fred Campagna has been named interim chief meteorologist following the departure of Mark Searles last month.
And meteorologist Steve Cascione will return to the station after several years at Channel 12.
The WLNE announcement did not mention any layoffs as part of the staff changes. When contacted by The Journal this afternoon, Doerr, the general manager, said there had not been any layoffs.
"I wouldn’t say we had a layoff," Doerr said. "We’ve moved resources around."
"Adding people in some areas means we have to reduce in others," Doerr said. He declined to provide any other details of the staff reductions "out of respect for the people who are involved."
In a telephone interview, Caron said he was given notice on Monday that his position was being eliminated. He created the graphics that appeared on the 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. newscasts, he said.
The staff restructuring is the latest change made by Channel 6’s new owner, Global Broadcasting of Southern New England, which purchased the station for an undisclosed amount from Freedom Communications in October.
When the deal was announced in March, Global’s owners, Kevin P. O’Brien and Robinson Ewert, said they planned to invest in the station and expand the news staff in hopes that its third-place newscast could better compete with Channels 10 and 12.
"The staff is going to be dramatically increased over time," O’Brien told the Journal in March. "We did not buy this television station to cut it back. We bought it to add people to it, to fix it and to make it the number-one television station in the market."