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WGRZ agrees to new four-year deals with Holmes, Hammer

WGRZ-TV (Channel 2) recently agreed to new contracts with key personnel to assure that one of the keys to morning success – stability – can occur for “Daybreak” for the next four years.

Co-anchor Melissa Holmes and chief meteorologist Patrick Hammer have both signed new four-year contracts to remain at the NBC affiliate.

The new contracts don’t assure Holmes and Hammer will stay in the morning, but that appears to be the plan for now.

They are two of the key components for the morning show, which was No. 1 in household viewership during the February sweeps.

WIVB-TV's (Channel 4) “Wake Up!,” which was ahead in the key 25-54 demographic in February in the early morning when combined with the simulcast in carries on sister station WNLO-TV, has dealt with repeated change in its morning program.

A graduate of Sweet Home High School and Syracuse University, Holmes has been at Channel 2 for seven years and has worked in Buffalo for 14 years.

She moved to Channel 2 in 2012 from Channel 4.

A West Coast native, Hammer arrived at Channel 2 in 2015 and was expected to eventually replace Kevin O’Connell as the station’s primary evening weathercaster. Although he is the station’s chief meteorologist, Hammer was moved to the mornings in the summer of 2016.

In separate texts, Holmes and Hammer celebrated their new deals with humor and by referencing one of Channel 2’s promotional slogans.

“Most people wouldn’t jump at the opportunity to hear the alarm go off at 2:15 every morning, but honestly I feel privileged to help Western New York start their day and do it surrounded by my friends and the tremendously talented team on ‘Daybreak,’ ” wrote Holmes. “I was born and raised in Western New York and it fills my heart to know my 5-year-old son will have the same opportunity. This is home!”

“What other station in the United States says, ‘hey, do you wan to talk about blizzards, ice storms, crazy winds and the best summers,’ ” wrote Hammer. “ ‘Plus you can lead a team while working with two dear friends on a show that starts three hours before sunrise? Trust us, you’ll love it.’ They were right. This Californian will always call this home.”


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