‘NewsNation’ Debuts Tonight On WGN America
Billed as “representing the return of traditional, trusted, fact-based news reporting to cable television,” NewsNation, a three-hour primetime national newscast, debuts tonight at 8 p.m. ET on WGN America, Nexstar Media Group’s wholly-owned cable network that reaches approximately 75 million U.S. TV households. NewsNation will air seven days a week.
NewsNation, Nexstar says, “will bring viewers breaking news and live video of the day’s most important national news stories and issues, as well as the most impactful regional and local news from across the U.S.” NewsNation’s digital team of reporters and producers will also deliver news 24 hours a day through NewsNation’s digital properties and its new mobile app, NewsNationNow.
NewsNation will feature a newly-hired staff of 150 reporters, producers, writers and photo-journalists dedicated exclusively to the newscast, and will draw on the local and regional expertise of Nexstar’s 5,400 local journalists in 110 award-winning newsrooms across the country. To generate awareness of the company’s new national primetime newscast, Nexstar is backing the launch of NewsNation with $100 million of local market promotion across its 196 local television stations, social media, and select radio and cable outlets nationwide.
“A lot has changed in the many years since the last launch of a national cable news network,” said Perry Sook, Nexstar’s chairman, president and CEO. “Most importantly, the programming on other cable news networks is now dominated by shows built around opinion and analysis — not always facts. NewsNation is committed to bringing American consumers the fact-based news that impacts their lives without the opinion or bias of ‘talking heads’.”
Sook continued: “Fact-based television news reporting is by far the most trusted and valued news source for consumers and NewsNation’s focus on bringing unbiased reporting of the day’s most important news to a national audience represents a return to the core values of journalism. In addition, our three-hour newscast will enable our reporters to delve more deeply into the stories of the day and explain the full range of issues shaping the news. We believe the launch of NewsNation will appeal to viewers across the country who have been looking for fair, balanced, objective journalism.”
Sean Compton, executive vice president of WGN America, said: “Our new state-of-the art studio and newsroom, combined with the expertise of our 150 dedicated reporters, producers, writers, and photo-journalists, and the 5,400 local journalists in Nexstar’s 110 newsrooms across the country, including news bureaus in 20 state capitals, affords NewsNation the flexibility to deliver live coverage of the day’s most impactful news from wherever it occurs — from San Diego to Burlington, and Portland to Miami. Our anchors can move seamlessly to locations nationwide and get the story from reporters who get to the scene first and bring fact-based context to their reporting.”
The weekday NewsNation team is led by veteran journalists Joe Donlon and Marni Hughes, breaking news anchor Rob Nelson, and chief meteorologist Albert Ramon, who collectively bring nearly 80 years of experience in television news to their roles and who have covered everything from presidential, state, and local elections, to hurricanes and the recent COVID-19 pandemic. The weekend NewsNation team is led by anchors Rudabeh Shahbazi and Nichole Berlie, breaking news anchor Aaron Nolan, and meteorologist Gerard Jebaily.
Jennifer Lyons, WGN America’s vice president of news, added: “We have assembled a great team of award-winning journalists who bring decades of television news experience to NewsNation and are focused on the mission of bringing unbiased news coverage to a national audience. With the general election just a few months away, the pandemic still going on, social justice issues taking center-stage in cities across the U.S., and the potential for major weather events to impact local communities at any time, the launch of the first new national fact-based news program since 1996 will resonate with viewers across the nation. Viewers are increasingly seeking a national newscast that informs and educates them with facts rather than soundbites, all without telling them what to think. Tonight, NewsNation begins delivering exactly that.”