Morning Show Anchor Alyson Courtney Leaves KTHV As News Shuffles Continue

Another KTHV-TV, Channel 11, employee has gone to KATV-TV, Channel 7. "Today's THV This Morning" anchor Alyson Courtney confirmed Monday that she left the Gannett Co.-owned CBS affiliate over the weekend to join KATV.

Courtney, who joined KTHV in 2003 as a reporter, could not provide more details about her new job at the Allbritton Communications' ABC affiliate, which has also seen its share of departures in recent months.

KATV General Manager Mark Rose did not return a call seeking comment. 

Chuck Maulden, KTHV's news director, said the station would miss Courtney's contributions.

"She's certainly a good reporter, a good anchor," Maulden said. "We're going to miss her."

Maulden also said that the station is still deciding what its next step will be with the popular morning show, whose No. 1 position was challenged in the November Nielsen ratings survey by rival KATV's "Good Morning Arkansas."

"We really are going to evaluate the best course of action moving forward, and I'm not sure what we're going to do," Maulden said. "Right now Melissa Dunbar-Gates is going to expand her morning duties so the newscast won't miss a beat. We've been reviewing our morning show for quite a while, like any business.

"We will figure out what to do next and move on."

The move is the latest in series of station-shuffling among employees of the two market-leading news operations.

In February, executive producer Nick Genty left KTHV to become as assistant news director at KATV. That move was preceeded by another defection, KTHV reporter Katherina Marie-Yancey, who also joined KATV.

At KATV, Genty replaced Alan Faulkner, who left the assistant news director position in January. That same month, KATV also lost Chief Engineer Allen Fine. And in February, News Director Randy Dixon, who had worked at the station for 31 years, announced his resignation.

The KATV news director position remains open.

Courtney joined the KTHV morning show in 2007 after long-time co-anchor Robyn Richardson retired. Since that time, the morning show has undergone several changes, as people have come and gone.

Courtney joined a team that originally included two other long-time "This Morning" anchors, BJ Sams and Tom Brannon. In May 2009, Sams retired and reporter Charles Crowson became a co-anchor. But Crowson left in November to join the Baltimore ABC affiliate, WMAR-TV, Channel 2.

After Crowson's departure, "This Morning" went to a two-anchor format with Courtney and Brannon as anchors, and reporter/anchor Dunbar-Gates reading the news.

(Arkansas Business and KTHV have a news sharing partnership, and Arkansas Business Publisher Jeff Hankins and Interactive Editor Lance Turner regularly appear on KTHV news programs.)