Veteran television sports reporters Dave Staley and John Madewell, along with weather reporter Erin Thomas, were among nine people reportedly let go this week at WTVC-TV 9 as part of a nationwide workforce reduction of Sinclair Broadcast Group employees, according to multiple sources.
Eleven positions were eliminated including the nine staff members who lost their jobs and two open positions.
The company announced on Wednesday it was reducing its workforce across the country by 5%. It is unclear if that number represented a similar reduction in each market or overall nationwide.
"From local businesses and advertisers to distributors and partners, no component of our business's ecosystem has been fully shielded from the impact of the global pandemic," Sinclair said in a statement released by 5W Associate Vice President Michael Padavoano. "In response to this, we are currently undergoing enterprise-wide reductions across our workforce, including corporate headquarters, to ensure we are well-positioned for future success."
Officials at WTVC did not respond to requests to confirm the layoffs, but the bios and pictures of Staley, Madewell and Thomas are no longer included on the station's News Team web page, and other sources at the station confirmed they are among those let go.
Staley, who joined NewsChannel9 in 1984, was sports director at the station and well known for his award-winning Dave's Diamond Darlings segment featuring local youth sports.
Madewell joined a decade later as a news reporter and later switched to sports. None of the remaining on-air personalities on the station's News Team site cover sports.
Thomas covered weather and traffic for the station since 2017.
Contact Barry Courter at [email protected] or 423-757-6354.