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Laura Gray returning to Ch.7 as morning and noon anchor

Laura Gray today became the second local news personality in a week persuaded to return to Channel 7.

A former morning reporter at the ABC affiliate who spent five years at the station before leaving in 2011 to become a communications specialist ( that’s a fancy way of saying she worked in public relations) for Delaware North, Gray will be the morning co-anchor for Channel 7's  revamped morning program this fall. She also will be the noon anchor.

A Pittsburgh native who worked in Erie, Pa. before joining Channel 7, Gray will work with meteorologist Andy Parker, who left Channel 2 “Daybreak” last week to return to Channel 7 on its new morning program.

Earlier this month, Channel 7 let go the morning team of Tiffany Lundberg and Cole Heath after they worked for a year on the low-rated program. The station's new owner, E.W. Scripps, is attempting to get viewers to give the morning program another look when the revamp starts in mid-September.

"We saw someone with Laura who has a good news presence, is local and is committed to the market," said Channel 7 General Manager Mike Nurse said this afternoon.

Back in 2009 when I reviewed all the local morning programs, Gray was a reporter on the Channel 7 program anchored by Bridget Blythe.

Back then, I noted that Gray seemed “more poised and may have been a better choice for co-anchor than Blythe.”

Blythe eventually moved to a bigger market. Now Gray gets a chance to see if I was right or not about her being a better choice as a morning anchor.