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Richert exiting Ch.4 after 17 years; Jeanneret on month-long vacation

WIVB-TV is losing another experienced news staffer with the announcement today that veteran reporter George Richert will be leaving after the end of the February sweeps.

Richert, who has been at Channel 4 for more than 17 years, is leaving to become the director of communications for Catholic Diocese of Buffalo.

Richert said this afternoon that he has been thinking about making a change for about a year.

"This really feels right," said Richert. "It sounds corny. I've always believed to everything there is a time and a purpose. I really trust my timing on this move."

The departure of Richert, a strong reporter who previously worked at WBEN-AM and has one of the best voices on television, follows the exit of veteran reporter Rich Newberg and the announcement that meteorologist Don Paul is retiring on March 23.

Channel 4 News Director Scott Levy also announced the hiring of another female reporter, Angela Christoforos, from Time Warner Cable News in Buffalo.

A week ago, Levy announced the hiring of reporter Rachele Mongiovi, a Kent State graduate who previously worked at WTAP in West Virginia. She starts March 7.

The hiring of the two new female reporters follows a recent trend at Channel 4. Since becoming news director in November of 2014, Levy has hired several women reporters and anchors, including Katie Alexander, Callan Gray, Ali Ingersoll, Marissa Perlman and Jenn Schanz. The lone male reporter hired in that time is Dave Greber.

Last July, Levy said it isn’t easy finding qualified male reporters to work in Buffalo, which is now outside the Top 50 television markets.

“It’s not because it’s Buffalo and cold weather specifically, but many male reporters are having the opportunity to skip the mid-size market such as Buffalo and land a job directly in a top 30 market with three-to-five years experience now,” said Levy in July.

“During the hiring process, I’m looking for the best candidate available and talk to both men and women. Gender is not a factor in the decision, but I’m seeing a trend of more qualified females applying for our open positions here in Buffalo.”

Inquiring minds want to know: Where is Rick Jeanneret, the voice of the Buffalo Sabres?

Sabre fans shouldn’t worry. According to a source close to Jeanneret, his health is fine.

Jeanneret, who didn’t work either of the Sabres games this week carried by MSG after the NHL All-Star game break, is on a scheduled Florida vacation. He won’t be back calling a game until March 1 when the Sabres host Connor McDavid and the Edmonton Oilers.

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