A pair of Nexstar Media Group-owned CBS affiliates serving Mississippi’s state capital and a neighboring city have bolstered their news operations with the addition of more local newscasts and the hiring of a new News Director to oversee teams at the two properties.
The stations are WJTV-12 in Jackson, Miss., and WHLT-22 in Hattiesburg, Miss., and that’s where Chris Turner has been selected to serve as News Director for both stations.
Turner is a 20+ veteran of TV news, and from 1980-2001 worked at CNN as an assistant bureau chief, field producer and on its international assignment desk. From Sept. 2012-May 2014, he served as News Director of CBS affiliate KGWN-5 in Cheyenne, Wyo., owned by Grey Television.
“My news philosophy is simple,” explains Turner. “Get it right, get it first, get it right the first time. I am extremely competitive when it comes to news. I don’t like coming in second… so I don’t. I want to beat everyone: same market stations, networks, even the home network. Whether it is breaking news, long format news shows, sports, weather, or features I want to make my newscasts the best to be found.”
Turner’s appointment comes as WJTV-12 and WHLT-22 expand their 4pm newscast from 30 minutes to a full hour. Additionally, a 9pm newscast will now appear on WJTV-12.2, branded as “Mississippi’s CW.”
News content on WHLT-22 will also now grow with the addition of two WJTV-12 news simulcasts at noon and 5pm.
For those questioning local news content in the Hattiesburg-Laurel area, as WHLT-22 embraces newscasts from its bigger sister in Jackson, Nexstar notes that “a local Pine Belt bureau (overseen by Turner) provides local news content and specialized sports coverage of the University of Southern Mississippi.