Tag Archives: Jim Van Fleet

Jim Van Fleet: I wasn’t dissing Fox 35 or Orlando in interview

from MyFoxOrlando.com

Former WOFL-Fox 35 morning meteorologist Jim Van Fleet is settling into his new role as chief met at Tampa’s WTSP-CBS 10. However, he’s still a bit unsettled by reaction to an interview he gave — and he wants to set the record straight.

This all began with an early December blog post by St. Petersburg Times TV writer Eric Deggans, who talked to Van Fleet about his new job at WTSP. Here’s what Deggans wrote:  “I’m actually here … and allowed to be on air,” joked Van Fleet, referring to the contract issues which kept him from appearing on WTSP until his agreement with Orlando Fox station WOFL-TV fully expired. “That was Triple A, and now I’m ready for the majors.”

It was that last statement that some inferred as a possible dig at his old station and/or Orlando. Van Fleet says that’s not the case.

In an email to us, Van Fleet wrote: “Yes, I was joking about actually being allowed to go on air finally. That was a little frustrating that Fox 35 would not let me just move on and go to the next chapter, but in a way the fact that they held on for as long as they could, and as tightly as they could, I do take that as a compliment.”

What about the minor-league comment?

“NO – I did not mean Orlando was Triple A and Tampa was the majors,” Van Fleet explained. “What I meant was I felt like since I was going from morning meteorologist back into the chief meteorologist role, well, that was like being ‘called up’ into the majors. So any misunderstanding … misquote … if I didn’t speak it clearly … whatever it is, if anyone took the way I did NOT mean it I just wanted to apologize as that is not what I said … or meant!!”

Van Fleet also said once he heard how his remarks were being interpreted by some, he was upset.

“My heart sank when I read this online because I think anyone who has taken the time to get to know me knows that I don’t put people down or make remarks like that,” Van Fleet wrote in his email. “So I hope this helps you understand where my intentions where and how I truly feel about Central Florida, and those feelings will never change.”

Read our original post about the interview here. (Note: Jim’s email arrived on Dec. 29, but I’ve been swamped and was not able to post until today.)

Was Jim Van Fleet criticizing Orlando, Fox 35 in interview?

The homepage of FTVLive.com's site with its Jim Van Fleet story.

I guess this one depends on your point of view. You can take some comments made by former WOFL-Fox 35 morning meteorologist Jim Van Fleet as either a diss at Orlando TV news or someone who’s just telling it like it is.

In an interview with St. Petersburg Times TV writer Eric Deggans, Van Fleet was asked to talk about his new job as the chief met at Tampa’s WTSP-CBS 10 — a job he started Monday.

“I’m actually here…and allowed to be on air,” joked Van Fleet Monday, referring to the contract issues which kept him from appearing on WTSP until his agreement with Orlando Fox station WOFL-TV fully expired. “That was Triple A, and now I’m ready for the majors.”

FTVLive.com blogger Scott Jones interpreted Van Fleet’s comments as a dig at Fox 35 and O-Town. Wrote Jones: “Not sure how calling his old station and market the minor leagues is going to go over with his former co-workers? But, we’re guessing they won’t be happy knowing they are just scrubs that can’t make it in the ‘Majors.’ ”

I’m willing to give Van Fleet the benefit of the doubt on this given that (a) he left a morning weather position to become a chief meteorologist, and (b) Orlando is the No. 19 television market, and Tampa is No. 14. In that respect, I could see how his new job is like the “majors” compared with ‘Triple A” Orlando. What do you think?

Lisa Bell joins WKMG, Jayme King to Fox 35 and Jim Van Fleet starts job

Lisa BellSome personnel moves for a couple of Orlando TV news stations …

Former News 13 morning anchor Lisa Bell is coming back to Orlando TV news. In January, she’ll be a reporter and occasional anchor on WKMG-Local 6.  “She will report for the 5, 6 and 7 p.m. news and fill in as anchor wherever we need her,” WKMG General Manager Skip Valet told Orlando Sentinel TV Guy Hal Boedeker. After working at the cable news station for four years, Bell left News 13 during the summer — and many viewers wondered what happened to her. Turns out she was just “on the beach.” …

Fox 35 has hired a new morning meteorologist to replace Jim Van Fleet. Jayme King is expected to join WOFL sometime early next year. He comes from Fox-owned sister station KSAZ in Phoenix. The Orlando Sentinel reports that King is a South Florida native whose weather experience included a first-hand encounter with Hurricane Andrew. …

Meanwhile, Jim Van Fleet began his new job in Tampa on Monday as chief meteorologist at WTSP-CBS 10. The station welcomed Van Fleet by inviting viewers to post questions for the new weather guy on Facebook, and he answered some of them during the 5 and 6 p.m. telecasts.

Jim Van Fleet offers one of his first forecasts at the new chief meteorologist at WTSP.

Jim Van Fleet, Guy Rawlings, Mike Dunston leaving Orlando TV news

Jim Van Fleet and anchor John Brown chat during the meteorologist's last newscast for Fox 35 Monday.

Comings and goings in Orlando TV news …

After nearly a decade with WOFL, meteorologist Jim Van Fleet presented his last forecast on Monday morning. The popular Fox 35 weatherman is heading to WTSP-CBS 10 in Tampa to become the station’s chief meteorologist. On Monday’s Good Day show, Van Fleet said, “It is bittersweet. Fox has been my family. For the record, I think this is the worst time for me to leave Fox 35 because I feel this is the strongest Fox 35 has been. So, I realize what I am doing but it is an opportunity that is too big to say no to.” …

WESH 2 sports anchor Guy Rawlings is heading to Atlanta to become a news anchor at WGCL-CBS 46. “I’m really excited and a little bit anxious,” Rawlings told the Atlanta Journal Constitution on Monday. “I wanted to try something different, look for a new challenge. A lot of my friends who are sports anchors are unemployed. Local sports seems to be shrinking. This opportunity is a hybrid of news and sports. I had to jump on it!” Rawlings’ last day at WESH will be Dec. 23. Sentinel TV Guy Hal Boedeker reports that WESH will start “a national search” for Rawlings’ replacement. Veteran Pat Clarke will help fill the sports gaps at WESH for awhile. …

Another familiar face in the mornings at Fox 35 is leaving town, too. Mike Dunston is heading to Cleveland to anchor “Good Morning Cleveland” for WEWS-ABC 5. Dunston has been with WOFL since 2007. He’ll join his new station in December.

Fox 35’s Jim Van Fleet heading to Tampa’s WTSP

from MyFoxOrlando.com

Meteorologist Jim Van Fleet, who has spent a decade forecasting the weather at WOFL-Fox 35, is heading to Tampa’s WTSP-CBS 10 to take over its chief meteorologist job.

“Fox 35 did make an offer for me to stay and it was a very generous offer, but quite simply this opportunity with WTSP is something meteorologists spend their entire lives working towards, and to have this door open for me right now is a dream come true and one I would be foolish to pass up,” Van Fleet told Sentinel TV Guy Hal Boedeker.

Van Fleet came to WOFL from Texas for Fox 35’s chief meteorologist job — but was bumped after a year when former WFTV chief met Glenn Richards became available and joined Fox 35. Van Fleet ended up on the morning shift, where he became one of the area’s most popular TV personalities.

But you won’t stop seeing Van Fleet on Fox 35 anytime soon. He’ll be in O-Town until his current deal runs out in December. According to NewsBlues.com, Van Fleet asked to be released early from his WOFL contract but his request was refused. Why? In Tampa, he’ll be competing against Fox O&O WTVT-Fox 13.

NewsBlues also reported that Van Fleet got the new gig after WTSP GM Ken Tonning saw him on TV while visiting Gainesville. After being contacted by the WTSP, Van Fleet — who didn’t have an agent — hired Rick Carr, who got the deal done.

WTSP announced Van Fleet’s hiring on its website Monday afternoon.

Former WKMG anchor Jacquie Sosa joining WOFL

Jacquie Sosa, who was paired with Mark McEwen in one of the earlier (and unsuccessful) attempts to revive WKMG’s morning news, will be back on TV in the mornings starting Thursday — the first day of the November sweeps.

Sosa is the newest co-anchor of the Fox 35 Morning News on WOFL. She’ll join a team that includes Jim Van Fleet, Heidi Hatch, Tom Johnson and Cris Martinez.

 “I have been blessed with the opportunity to spend the

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