Anchors Away at KATV, KTHV: Courtney, Jaeger Depart

Anchors Away at KATV, KTHV: Courtney, Jaeger Depart
Alyson Courtney, left, and Amanda Jaeger (Arkansas Business and KTHV)

On the heels of Amanda Jaeger's declaration that she was leaving KTHV's early-morning anchor slot for a senior job at Walmart Inc., KATV morning anchor Alyson Courtney has announced that she is leaving Channel 7 to help her two daughters with acting opportunities.

Jaeger, the popular former Miss Kansas, left Channel 11 at the start of April to become senior manager, digital strategy and brand management, at Walmart Inc. in Bentonville. Courtney, who spent years in the anchor chair at KTHV before departing for KATV in March 2011, said on Facebook that she's leaving TV news to focus on family, particularly her girls' budding acting careers.

Both anchors were clearly tired of their alarm clocks. Courtney even led her news with it.

"After 14 years of getting up at 2:30 in the morning, I'm stepping away from the anchor desk," Courtney wrote. "My oldest daughter is a junior in high school now and it's important to me to be able to be there for all the special moments she has coming up before she heads off to college."

Jaeger, who competed in the Miss America Pageant after her 2014 Miss Kansas victory and joined Channel 11 in Little Rock in 2016, started recently in the new Walmart job. A recent Twitter post celebrated her newfound ability to sleep in, displaying her 2:55 a.m. alarm, then backups at 2:57, 3 and 3:07. Her message? "For the last time…"

Courtney praised Chris Kane and Melinda Mayo as stalwart co-workers and best friends, and she saluted her loyal viewers, saying they'd helped her change for the better. But she said both her girls are actresses, and they need her. She will be helping manage their careers.

"I'm also looking forward to being able to see my husband a lot more," Courtney said.

Jaeger, with her pageant looks and surprisingly stentorian voice, saw her popularity bound well beyond Arkansas when she took to social media, and particularly TikTok, with its funny video snippets, in 2020.

In one clip, viewed more than 2 million times, Jaeger intones "this is my real voice, like all the time, not just at work." In a post-Oscars clip seen 2.6 million times, she jokes about the Will Smith-Chris Rock episode: "Update this morning, apparently everyone still hates Chris," and "studies say two things we shouldn't talk about: Bruno, and Jada."

@itsamandajaeger Had the convo before and i am sure i will have it again 🤣🤣♥️ but it’s always just been how I talk! happy to move forward to the next journey! #fyp ♬ original sound - AmandaJaeger

A native of Columbia, Missouri, and graduate of the University of Central Missouri, Jaeger joined KTHV after two years at KWCH in the Wichita, Kansas, market. KWCH is owned by the Gray Television chain of Atlanta; KTHV belongs to the Tegna chain of Tysons Corner, Virginia. KATV's parent company is Sinclair Broadcast Group of Maryland.

Jaeger praised her news colleagues and shared some funny TV memories, including a moment when she was reporting at a shopping mall and a fan approached and touched her abdomen, asking when the baby was due. Jaeger's reply: "I'm not pregnant, but I do have a food baby."