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News director who revamped WIVB-TV headed to Kansas City in same role

WIVB-TV (Channel 4) News Director Scott Levy, who has revamped the staff in less than two years, is leaving Aug. 12 to become the news director at KCTV in Kansas City.

In an email to the staff, Levy said he was making the move to be closer to friends and family in Oklahoma after six years living on the East Coast.

“I seized an opportunity,” said Levy in a telephone interview. “It is with a great company, Meredith.”

Since arriving at Channel 4 during Snovember in 2014, Levy has hired several new young reporters, revamped the sports department, overseen the departures of veterans Rich Newberg, Don Paul and George Richert, dropped a regular 6 p.m. sportscast and started a 4 p.m. weekday newscast.

In the self-congratulatory email, Levy wrote: “My goal from the start was to embrace the history of the station and build for the future. What we have accomplished since then has been recognized around the country as one of the best turnarounds in local news and has helped return WIVB to some of its past success.”

Levy’s reign hasn’t come without some controversy. Text messages from Levy that criticized the staff were accidentally emailed to the staff by an assistant news director, Kris O’Donnell, who subsequently left the station. O’Donnell had been hired by former Channel 4 News Director Joe Schlaerth.

Lisa Polster, who came to Channel 4 as executive morning producer about a year ago after being news director at Channel 7, has been named the interim news director at Channel 4.

 

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