October 31st, 2012
Bobby Totsch

Vice President and General Manager Robert G. (Bobby) Totsch is longer with KCTV/KCMO TV in Kansas City, sources have told Bottom Line exclusively.

“Bobby is no longer with the station,” wrote Art Slusark, Vice President and Chief Communications Officer with Meredith Corporation in a memo.

“We did not renew his contract. We wish him the best in his future endeavors.”

The fact Totsch was let go in the middle of the all-important November sweeps period at the Meredith-owned station is stunning news.  This is the all-important time when ratings will determine advertising rates the station will charge going forward.

KCTV joins NBC affiliate KSHB as not having a GM (or news director) during this critical time.  FOX 4 News Director Bryan McGruder departed his station last week.

Totsch had succeeded Kirk Black in October 2009, who was named to head Meredith’s CBS Atlanta affiliate in August of that year. Black has since left Meredith and last month joined Time Warner in Kansas City.

Totsch, 49, who joined the CBS affiliate in 2009 after spending 21 years at St. Louis’s KMOV-TV, made a number of changes at KCTV during in his short tenure.

Probably the most dramatic change was not renewing the contract of KCTV’s veteran meteorologist Katie Horner after 23 years (LINK). She is now in real estate.

Under Totsch’s direction, the station’s morning team was repeatedly shaken up starting with Chris Pisano and Dana Wright (now an afternoon radio host on KMBZ-980 AM). They were replaced by Kelly Jones and Greg Adaline, and then Adaline was let go after about a year and replaced by Matt Stewart. Earlier this year the station brought in an entirely new duo to handle the show.

It was Totsch’s decision to bring in Michael Coleman as the station’s sports director, and he disbanded the station’s award-winning Investigative team.
Totsch also created local shows, including “The Kansas City Zoo Show,” and one aimed at the Hispanic market called “Que Pasa, KC?”

A few weeks ago he introduced a new “Better Kansas City” daily morning talk show featuring Kelly Jones and Lisa Holbrook.

Totsch had served as the Director of Sales, Marketing, Promotions, Internet and Local Entertainment Programming for KMOV-TV, a Belo-owned station in St. Louis, MO. During his tenure at KMOV-TV he worked in progressively senior positions including Local Sales Manager and National Sales Manager.

He also helped create the sales and marketing strategy for all Belo stations, and served as the Executive Producer of three local programs at KMOV-TV.

Totsch is a 1986 graduate of the University of Missouri.

7 Responses

  1. Bob Gould says:

    Good riddance to a bad manager…hopefully, they get rid of Chris Suchan and the zoo show and Better Kansas City.

  2. Gary Foster says:

    Glad to hear this. I just emailed the station that I had just had it with their website news bias and the broadcast. I vowed to stop watching and reading. I have. Will they change their ways? Lets hope so.

  3. JJ Baldwin says:

    Mr. Foster, you are charming with your opinion that Mr. Tosch’s time at KCTV skewed their news in any way. GM’s get canned for 1) not making revenue/ratings goals, 2) egregious professional misconduct or 3) some other corporate malfeasance. Mr. T may be guilty of one or more of the above, but no way did his own political leanings impact KCTV’s news product at all.
    Seriously. The content news product is small potatoes. Ratings and money matter.

    • One who knows says:

      They promoted Adaline to the morning show and never gave him a raise. He worked that shift for nearly a year while Totsch pocketed the proper salary for those duties.

    • Gary Foster says:

      As a consumer of tv programing and news and online information and news, I can hope that someone somewhere is being held responsible for trashing a perfectly good tv station and ruining it for me. If not him, WHO?
      Since (DeAnn) Ms Smith arrived there the online news slant has become lefty/liberal and why would I bother to read that? Not me pard. Who kept her on there Mr. Baldwin?
      Nope, I think more people should be fired at 5. Ms Smith and others should join Mr. Tosch at the unemployment line.

  4. Juan Acampar says:

    I agree with the J J Baldwin 1,2 or 3 theory. Been there. Done that.

  5. LAC says:

    Glad to see this guy GO !!!! kctv 5 has gone down the tubes the past few years…

    I thought the new weatherman was going to be good…. WRONG ! He spends way too much time talking about kid stuff, which is NOT part of the weather, I am sick of it !!!

    I wish they had put Tom Wachs in as CM, he is good, the new guy and amble… TERRIBLE !!!!!

    New morning crew, is right down at the bottom
    of the barrel with the JOKE at #4… simple do not watch anymore !!!!!

    Heck… I could do a much better job than this clown did !!!!

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