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.
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.