Radio company iHeart Media has appointed former KCRA-TV reporter Mike Luery to the position of assistant news director for the radio chain’s west coast region.
The announcement comes more than a month after Luery announced his sign-off from KCRA (Channel 3), Sacramento’s top-rated NBC affiliate.
“We look forward to Mike being an integral partner in contributing to the news content on the KFBK Morning News…as well as the KFBK Afternoon News,” Bill White, KFBK Radio’s program director, said in a statement to news outlets on Monday.
“Mike, with his decades of news experience in Sacramento, will be an excellent addition to our team of Northern California news veterans.”
Luery joins a roster of former television reporters at KFBK (1530 AM, 93.1 FM), which counts former KXTV (Channel 10) news anchor Cristina Mendonsa and ex-KOVR (Channel 13) anchor Sam Shane among its newsroom talent.
He joined KFBK and iHeart Media after spending a combined 20 years at KCRA. From 1984 to 2000, Luery worked as an investigative consumer reporter for the station’s “Call 3” brand before exiting television for various marketing roles.
He re-joined the TV news industry as a Sacramento-based political reporter for NBC News, where he filed stories that appeared on MSNBC and several dozen NBC affiliates throughout the west coast.
From 2009 to 2012, he worked as a political correspondent and investigative reporter for KOVR, Sacramento’s CBS station where he produced stories that examined how local and state government officials were spending taxpayer money. He left the station to re-join KCRA as a general assignment reporter, where he worked until last December.
In addition to his job duties at KFBK, Luery will oversee various news products connected to radio and online-only stations in California, Oregon, Washington, Alaska and Hawaii, according to an iHeart Media executive.
“He’ll report on everything from breaking news to politics to state fairs,” Jayson Campadonia, iHeart Media’s chief news director for the company’s west coast stations, said in a statement. “With his vast experience in the news business, he will play a critical role in developing young news talent.”
In a social media post, Luery said he was equally excited to help mold the minds of “up-and-coming journalist” and was “grateful for this new opportunity to mentor reporters and help them enterprise good stories.”
Luery’s hiring comes nearly a year after KFBK laid off its former news director Mike Hagerty, who has since re-surfaced as an interim news anchor at Sacramento public radio station KXJZ (90.9 FM, “Capital Public Radio”). The layoff was one of several at iHeart Media’s Sacramento broadcast outlets and came amid a re-structuring of the company that saw similar layoffs across the country.
In June 2020, The Desk reported iHeart Media was ready to hire a replacement news director to fill Hagerty’s old spot at KFBK, but that the new role would include additional job duties at other iHeart Media-owned radio stations.
KFBK is one of the few remaining “super stations” with a strong, 50,000-watt signal that blankets much of Northern California and can be heard across the western United States at night.
iHeart Media operates more than 850 live AM and FM radio stations across the country. It simulcasts two stations on SiriusXM satellite radio and operates its own ad-supported streaming radio service.