WFAA-TV: Wikis


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Dallas / Fort Worth, Texas
Branding WFAA-TV Channel 8, Channel 8, WFAA-TV (general)
News 8, News 8 HD (newscasts)
Slogan The Spirit of Texas (primary)
Start Here (secondary)
Channels Digital: 8 (VHF)
Subchannels (See article)
Affiliations ABC
Owner Belo Corporation
(WFAA-TV, Inc.)
First air date September 17, 1949
Call letters’ meaning "Working For All Alike"
Sister station(s) KFWD
Former callsigns KBTV (1949-1950)
Former channel number(s) Analog:
8 (VHF, 1949-2009)
9 (VHF, 1998-2009)
Former affiliations Primary:
DuMont (1949-1950)
NBC (1950-1957)
DuMont (1950-1955)
ABC (1950-1957)
Transmitter Power 45 kW
Height 512 m
Facility ID 72054
Transmitter Coordinates 32°35′6.00″N 96°58′41.00″W / 32.585°N 96.97806°W / 32.585; -96.97806

WFAA (Channel 8) is a duPont-Columbia Award-winning and Peabody Award-winning[1] ABC television affiliate serving the Dallas–Fort Worth Metroplex, one of the top ten media markets in North America. The station is the flagship of Belo Corporation and the largest ABC affiliate not owned and operated by the network. It is also the largest affiliate of any of the "big four" networks (ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox) not owned by that respective network. In turn, WFAA and CW affiliate KDAF, (channel 33) are the only network-affiliate stations in the market not to be owned and operated by any major network.

The station is licensed to Dallas and its studios and offices are located downtown next to the office of The Dallas Morning News—with whom it was co-owned from 1950 to 2008—and at the Victory Park development next to the American Airlines Center where the noontime news is filmed with the anchors sitting in front of a window view of the outside street activity. The station has small bureaus in Collin County at the Frisco Roughriders baseball stadium, and in Tarrant County near downtown Fort Worth. Both bureaus house a few reporters but are rarely used for filming. Its transmitter is located in Cedar Hill, Texas.

WFAA also serves as the default ABC affiliate for the Sherman, Texas/Ada, Oklahoma market since that market currently lacks an ABC affiliate of its own, as the market's former ABC affiliate KTEN became an NBC affiliate in 1998. WFAA is carried as the local ABC affiliate to DISH Network and DirecTV subscribers within that market and the sole ABC affiliate carried by cable operators in several of the largest cities in the Sherman-Ada market including Sherman and Denison in Texas; as well as Ardmore, Durant and Hugo in Oklahoma.



The WFAA "8-Ball" logo used from 1968 to 1983

WFAA signed on as DuMont affiliate KBTV on September 17, 1949, owned by Texas oil magnate Tom Potter. (Note: The call letters KBTV were used for years by Channel 9, the ABC (now NBC) affiliate in Denver, but now belongs to Channel 4, the Beaumont, Texas Fox station.) WFAA was the third TV station in Texas behind Fort Worth's WBAP-TV (now KXAS-TV, channel 5) and Houston's KLEE-TV (now KPRC-TV, channel 2) the second in Dallas/Fort Worth, and the first licensed to Dallas. The station became WFAA-TV on March 21, 1950, not long after the station was purchased from Lacy-Potter TV Broadcasting Company for 575,000$ by Belo (FCC approval on March 13, 1950) in the midst of a FCC television license freeze from 1948 to 1952. It took its calls from WFAA radio (AM 570, now KLIF; and FM 97.9, now KBFB). The WFAA call letters reportedly stood for "Working For All Alike," and also "World's Finest Air Attraction."

WFAA logo used from 1984-1996. The original "Spirit of Texas" logo typically accompanied this logo during that period.

In addition to the DuMont affiliation, KBTV affiliated with the short-lived Paramount Television Network; the station agreed to air 4.75 hours of Paramount programming per week in 1949.[2] In 1950, the station switched its primary affiliation to NBC, and also took on a secondary ABC affiliation. DuMont shut down in 1955, and NBC disappeared from the schedule in 1957 when WBAP-TV boosted its signal to cover Dallas, making WFAA the market's ABC affiliate.

WFAA 1996-2003 Spirit Logo

WFAA was the first station to break the news that President Kennedy had been assassinated on November 22, 1963 about two blocks north of the television station near Dealey Plaza outside the Texas School Book Depository. The station conducted the first live television interview with Abraham Zapruder, who shot the famous Zapruder film, which was processed at WFAA's photo lab, about an hour and a half after the President's death. WFAA and its live remote unit fed much coverage of the assassination and its aftermath to the ABC network over the next four days. The shocking and unexpected shooting of accused assassin Lee Harvey Oswald by Jack Ruby in the basement of Dallas police headquarters, however, was not broadcast live (as on NBC) or on tape (as on CBS a minute later) by WFAA and ABC as their live truck was positioned elsewhere at the time. ABC was thus only able to show delayed newsreel footage of the historic event.

As television matured, WFAA grew to become known as a pioneer in broadcast journalism as well as for many technological advancements including: the first computerized newsroom, the market's first station to use a helicopter in coverage, live trucks, microwaves and more. WFAA uncovered significant stories in the 1980s including information that would lead to SMU's football team being given the "death penalty" in the mid-1980s, as well as the first major media investigation into America's Savings & Loan scandal rooted in Texas.

WFAA "Family First" Logo

WFAA dominated the market ratings for local news from the mid 1970s through the late 1990s, with anchors including Tracy Rowlett, Iola Johnson, Bob Gooding, Murphy Martin, Judi Hanna, John Criswell, Chip Moody, John McCaa, Gloria Campos, Lisa McRee, Verne Lundquist, Dale Hansen, and Troy Dungan. Former News Director turned Belo vice president/news Herman "Marty" Haag is credited for leading the station's news department to ratings dominance and national prominence. Haag was honored with a special Lifetime Achievement George Foster Peabody Award shortly before his death.

WFAA pioneered community outreach with town hall meetings all over north Texas through its Family First (F1) program. Family First began in 1993 and remains a significant part of the station's commitment to community service.

WFAA Current Spirit Logo

WFAA became the first television station in America to broadcast a digital signal on a VHF channel (VHF channel 9) on February 27, 1998 at 2:17 p.m. and holds the distinction of broadcasting the nation's first local news program in HDTV. When the station's digital signal went online, its frequency was already in use by Dallas hospitals and there was interference with the medical equipment.[3] The station is one of the only ABC affiliates to broadcast HDTV in a 1080i format; other ABC affiliates broadcast in 720p. Some programming is broadcast from the station's sleek Victory Park studios (News 8 Daybreak, Good Morning Texas, News 8 Midday, News 8 at 5 and 6 p.m., and also when a major event is being held at Victory Park).[4][5]

WFAA Green Logo as part of its "Project Green" initiative

In 2008, Belo decided to split its broadcasting and newspaper interests into separate companies. WFAA remained with the broadcasting side, which retained the Belo Corp name, while the newspapers (including The Dallas Morning News) became the similarly-named A.H. Belo Corporation. However, the former corporate cousins still have a news partnership.

Digital television

The station's digital channel is VHF 8, multiplexed:

Subchannel Programming
8.1 Main WFAA/ABC programming
8.2 News 8 Now (see note)
8.3 This TV

"News 8 Now" screens weather radar, regular news updates and headlines on a crawl, and occasional live programming. This live programming includes ABC News Now[6]. This subchannel could also be used for special programming, especially hurricane season, when it was used to relay WWL-TV in New Orleans for Hurricanes Katrina in 2005 and Gustav in 2008; and KHOU-TV in Houston for Hurricane Ike in 2008. Both WWL and KHOU are sister stations to WFAA. While viewing the doppler radar on "Xpress 8.2", it broadcasts NOAA Weather Radio station KEC56 in Dallas. It also utilizes NOAA's KEC55 in Fort Worth and KXI87 in Corsicana as alternate feeds.


Analog-to-digital conversion

The analog television shutdown took place on June 12, 2009 at 12:03PM[7][8] and WFAA-DT has moved to channel 8 (formerly the analog WFAA-TV). [9] The last few moments of WFAA's analog signal included its first broadcasting days followed by historic moments caught on tape (as narrated by Pete Delkus), then their sign-off video used in the 1970s was played as the analog send-off.

On December 23, 2009, WFAA filed an application to the FCC to increase the ERP from a 45 kW with an omni-directional antenna to a 55 kW with a directional antenna. The reason for the power increase is because some over-the-air viewers are having difficulty receiving the station's signal on channel 8. [10]


WFAA airs All My Children on a day-behind basis at 11 am instead of the recommended time of 12 noon. It airs an hour-long midday newscast at noon. WFAA airs the ABC Kids children's programming block significantly out of pattern compared to many ABC stations. Currently, a double run of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers airs on a one-week delay from 5–6 am, instead of the recommended time of 11 am to 12 noon, when the ABC network feeds the show to its affiliates "live". Also, The Emperor's New School and The Replacements air on same-day delay from 11–12 pm, instead of the recommended 8 am–9 am timeslot for both shows. The remaining two hours air in pattern "live" from the ABC feed. WFAA airs the Saturday edition of News 8 Daybreak on Saturday mornings from 7–9:00 a.m.

For years, Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune aired on Channel 8. After years of airing Wheel of Fortune at 6:30 pm, WFAA dropped it in 2006 in favor of the younger-oriented Entertainment Tonight; it dropped Jeopardy! at the same time. Both game shows now appear on CBS owned-and-operated station KTVT.

Programming controversies

WFAA-TV preempted both Prep and Landing and the traditional A Charlie Brown Christmas on December 8, 2009 to instead show a nighttime special of their Good Morning Texas show. This decision was made with little notice despite the significant number of advertisements during ABC programming leading up to the broadcast.

In response to complaints, WFAA announced both shows would be broadcast starting at 3:05 am on December 12 as so viewers could set their DVR's and VCR's. A Charlie Brown Christmas reaired successfully. However, the rebroadcast of Prep and Landing stopped after the first act break. During the commercial, WFAA mistakenly reset the broadcast and reaired a A Charlie Brown Christmas a second time. ABC reaired Prep and Landing again on December 16 and December 24 (Christmas Eve), and WFAA also agreed to air the rebroadcasts.[11][12] However, a few websites have noticed the preemptions.[13]

News operation

WFAA broadcasts a total of 34 hours of local news a week (5½ hours on weekdays, three hours on Saturdays and 3½ hours on Sundays). WFAA also operates a news helicopter called HD Chopper 8, which still has the 1984-1996 dual-outlined "8" logo on the underside of the helicopter and reads: N8TV.

Since 1986, WFAA's news organization has won four Peabody Awards[14], with a fifth awarded personally to H. Martin "Marty" Haag, who was WFAA's executive news director from 1973 to 1989 and a Belo Corporation executive after that.[15] WFAA's Peabody Awards were for:

In 2009, WFAA received the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Award's Gold Baton for its "continuing commitment to outstanding investigative reporting.", the first local station to win that recognition in the 20-year history of the award; reporters Byron Harris and Brett Shipp were recognized for:[19]: three exemplary investigative reports about corruption and waste at the Export-Import Bank of the United States, grade changing for failing high school athletes, and the danger posed by aging gas pipeline couplings. Among the Dallas Independent School District high schools exposed by their investigations were South Oak Cliff High School[20] and Roosevelt High School.[21]

Also recognized were Mark Smith (producer), Kraig Kirchem (editor and photographer), and Michael Valentine, executive news director. The pipeline-couplings investigation was featured in the PBS documentary series, Exposé: America's Investigative Reports, in an episode entitled "Beneath the North Texas Dirt."

WFAA started producing newscasts and other local programming in high definition on February 2, 2007. WFAA is one of the only television stations not using the First Warning broadcast weather alert system, instead when severe weather alerts are in effect for viewing area, the warning type and the counties the alert is in effect for are displayed in text form at the top of the screen.


WFAA's News 8 Update at 10 pm is the market's most-watched late local newscast, and its 5 and 6 p.m. newscasts are the area's most-watched early evening local newscasts.[citation needed]

Notable personalities

(Year personality joined WFAA in parentheses)

Current on-air talent

News 8 anchors

(In alphabetical order)

  • Gloria Campos - weeknights at 5, 6 and "The News 8 Update" (10 p.m.) and "Wednesday's Child" feature reporter (1984)
  • Alexa Conomos- weekdays "News 8 Midday" (noon) and "News 8 Daybreak" traffic reporter (2003)
  • Debbie Denmon - weekday mornings "News 8 Daybreak" and reporter (2000)
  • Chris Flanagan - weekday mornings "News 8 Daybreak" (2009)
  • Cynthia Izaguirre - weekday mornings "News 8 Daybreak" and "News 8 Midday" (noon), and reporter (2008)
  • John McCaa - weeknights at 5, 6 and "The News 8 Update" (10 p.m.) and reporter (1984)
  • Rob McCollum - co-host of "Good Morning Texas" (2009)
  • Casey Norton - Sundays at 6 and 10 p.m., (beginning in March)
  • Shelly Slater - Saturdays at 6, Sundays at 5 and weekends on "The News 8 Update" at 10 p.m. and reporter (2006)
  • Amy Vanderoef - co-host of "Good Morning Texas" (2006)

News 8 Investigates

News 8 reporters/other

(In alphabetical order)

News 8 Weather

(In order of rank)

  • Pete Delkus (AMS/NWA Seals of Approval) - Chief Meteorologist; weeknights at 5, 6 and "The News 8 Update" at 10 p.m. (2005)
  • Greg Fields (AMS Seal of Approval) - Meteorologist; weekday mornings "News 8 Daybreak" and noon (1998)
  • Steve McCauley (AMS Seal of Approval) - Meteorologist; Saturdays at 6, Sundays at 5, weekends on "The News 8 Update" at 10 p.m. (2000)

News 8 Sports

(In order of rank)

  • Dale Hansen - Sports Director; weeknights at 6 and "The News 8 Update" at 10 p.m. and host of Dale Hansen's Sports Special (1983)
  • Joe Trahan - Saturdays at 6 and "The News 8 Update" at 10 p.m. and host of High School Sports Special on Sundays (2003)
  • George Riba - senior sports reporter (1977)
  • Ted Madden - sports reporter and photographer (2002)

News 8 alumni

A — L
  • Neal Barton - Meteorologist (1989-1994, now at KETK-TV in Tyler/Longview, Texas)
  • Alan Berg - Austin Bureau Chief (1992-2000, now managing partner at Arts+Labor in Austin, Texas)
  • Jeff Brady - Reporter/Anchor (2001-2009, now in public relations)
  • Jan Bridgman - Consumer Reporter/Weekend Anchor (late 1970s-1984, deceased)
  • Bill Brown - Reporter (1980-2004, now in public relations)
  • Bob Brown - Reporter/Anchor (1975-1977, now at ABC News)
  • Arch Campbell - Reporter (1971-1974, now at WJLA-TV in Washington, DC)
  • David Cassidy (not to be confused with the actor/singer: Reporter (1974-1988; early 2000s-present)
  • Mike Castellucci - Why Guy (2005-2008, left for San Diego)
  • Mark Clegg - Anchor/Reporter (1990-1992, now at KSHB-TV in Kansas City)
  • Lin Sue Cooney - Anchor/Reporter (1980-1984, now at KPNX-TV in Phoenix)
  • John Criswell - Anchor (1973-1990, left for KDFW-TV before retiring, now a Dallas Media Consultant)
  • Meghan Danahey: Meteorologist (2007-2008, left for KVUE in Austin)
  • Deanna Dewberry - Anchor (1998-2005, now Anchor/Reporter at WISH-TV in Indianapolis)
  • Deborah Duncan - Good Morning Texas Host (1994-1997, now at KHOU-TV in Houston)
  • Troy Dungan - Chief Weathercaster (1976-2007)
  • Bill Evans - Meteorologist (1987-1989, now at WABC-TV in New York City)
  • Dave Evans - Senior Reporter (1989-2000, now at WABC-TV in New York)
  • Justin Farmer - Morning Anchor/Reporter (2005-2008, now an anchor at WSB-TV)
  • Doug Fox - Anchor/Reporter/Urban Affairs Unit manager (1974-2003)
  • Jim Fry - Washington Correspondent/City Hall Reporter (1982-2006)
  • Chris Gailus - Daybreak Co-anchor (2000-2003, now at CHAN-TV in Vancouver)
  • David Garcia - Weekend Anchor/Reporter (1965-1968, later with ABC and most recently with KPSP-TV in Riverside County, CA)
  • Bob Gooding - Anchor (1961-1979, deceased)
  • Judi Hanna - Anchor/Reporter (1969-1974, later with KVIL-FM)
  • Charles Hadlock - Anchor/Reporter (1980-1982, went to Houston and eventually to NBC News)
  • Erin Hawksworth - Sports Reproter (2006-2008, now reporting at WFXT in Boston)
  • Chris Heinbaugh - Dallas City Hall Reporter (2000-2007, now Chief of Staff for Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert)
  • Michael Hill - Reporter (1988-1993, now at WGNO-TV in New Orleans)
  • Midge Hill - Anchor/Reporter (1984-1989, left for KTVT-TV, does occasional community theatre in Garland)
  • Jackie Hyland - Morning Anchor/Reporter (2005-2007, now an anchor at WPIX-TV in New York City)
  • Macie Jepson - 5 p.m. anchor/reporter (2000-2008)
  • Brian Jensen - Sports Anchor/Reporter (1988-1997, currently radio voice for Texas Tech Football)
  • Iola Johnson - Anchor (1973-1985, last with KTXA-TV as host of Positively Texas)
  • Andrea Joyce - Sports Reporter (1987-1988)
  • Kristine Kahanek - Meteorolgist (1997-2001)
  • Karin Kelly - Reporter (1979-2006)
  • Shelley Kofler - Capitol Bureau Reporter (2000-2004, now at KERA-TV)
  • Mike Landess - Anchor/Reporter (1967-1971 as Malcolm Landess, now at KMGH-TV in Denver)
  • Ed Lavandera - Reporter (1991-1998, now at CNN's Dallas bureau)
  • Mike Lee - Reporter (1966-1968, now at ABC News in London)
  • Bert Lozano - Reporter (2004-2006, now in public relations)
  • Verne Lundquist - Sports Anchor (1967-1983, now at CBS Sports)
M — Z
  • Mark Mathis - Meteorologist (1994-1997)
  • David Margulies - Anchor/Reporter (1976-1986, now a public relations consultant)
  • Anna Martinez - Reporter/Host of La Vida (1991-2002, now working at Southern Methodist University)
  • Tony Martinez - Sports Anchor/Reporter (1983-1987 and 1996-2000), now independent producer
  • Lisa McRee - Anchor/Reporter (1989-1991)
  • Stan Miller - Anchor/Reporter (1983-1985)
  • Russ Mitchell - Anchor (1983-1985, now with CBS News)
  • Chip Moody - Anchor (1987-2000, deceased)
  • Steve Newman - Weekend Weather Anchor/Meteorologist (1976-1980), later moved to KRON-TV (1980-1985; 1989-1993), KGO-TV (1985-1989) and KPIX-TV (1996-2001). Now writes Earthweek, distributed by Universal Press Syndicate.
  • Bill O'Reilly, host of the cable news program The O'Reilly Factor.
  • Gerry Oher - Sports Reporter (1983-1992)
  • Vince Patton - Reporter (1989-2000, now at KGW-TV in Portland, Oregon)
  • Scott Pelley - Reporter (1982-1989, now at CBS News)
  • Pablo Pereira - Weather Anchor (1990-1997, now at KNBC-TV in Los Angeles)
  • Mary Ann Razzuk - Reporter (2001-2006)
  • Bill Ratliff - Anchor/Reporter/PM Magazine Host (1980-1982, now at WFLA-TV in Tampa)
  • Gina Redmond - Midday Anchor (1995-2001)
  • Michael Rey - Anchor/Reporter (2004-2005)
  • Elisa Robin - Meteorologist
  • Robyne Robinson - Reporter (1985-1987, now at KMSP-TV in Minneapolis)
  • Rebecca Rodriguez - Anchor/Reporter (2000-2006)
  • Dan Ronan - Reporter (2003-2007)
  • Tracy Rowlett - Anchor (1974-1999, now at KTVT-TV)
  • Scott Sams - News, Weather, Sports Anchor/Reporter (1985-2004, went to KTEN-TV, now at KTVT-TV)
  • Renay San Miguel - Anchor/Reporter/Host, "La Vida" (1991-1997), went to CNBC, CBS MarketWatch, CNN/CNN Headline News
  • Phil Seib - Political Analyst (1978-2000)
  • Jennifer Schack Meteorologist; "News 8 Daybreak" (2008-2010)
  • Nancy Snell - Meteorologist (to 2006; 2008-2008)
  • Bert Shipp - Reporter (1960s; father of Brett Shipp)
  • Mary Stewart - Reporter (1986-2000, later went to KTVT-TV)
  • Rene Syler - Anchor/Reporter (1992-1997, left for KTVT-TV, last with CBS' The Early Show)
  • Susan Taylor - Anchor/Reporter (1980-1982, now at KNSD-TV in San Diego)
  • Jack Van Roy - Chief Weather Anchor (1970s-1977, deceased)
  • Sonya Van Sickle - Reporter/Anchor (1986-1999, now an actor/spokesperson with the Mary Collins Agency[22])
  • Anita Vanetti - Daybreak Reporter (1990-2001, now a confidence coach[23])
  • Don Wall - Environmental Reporter (1989-2006)
  • Uze Brown Washington - Reporter (1984-1991)
  • Peggy Wehmeyer - Reporter (1981-1993)
  • Yolanda Walker - Reporter (2001-2006, now Director of Public Relations-Cash America)
  • Jay Watson - Program Director/Anchor (?-1966, first to break the news of John F. Kennedy assassination, deceased)
  • Phyllis Watson - Anchor (1983-1991)
  • Valeri Williams - Reporter (1992-1994 and 2000-2003; now an attorney)
  • Doug Wilson - Education Reporter (1994-2001, currently working at Richland College)
  • Oprah Winfrey - Anchor (October 12, 2009)
  • Paula Zahn - Reporter (1978-1979, later went to CNN)

News/station presentation

WFAA/NEWS 8 Current 'HD' Logo

Newscast titles

  • Hamms Beer Evening Edition/Final Edition (early 1950s)
  • KBTV Newsreel (early 1950s)
  • News Roundup (mid 1950s-1960s)
  • Channel 8 News (1960s-1974; still used today in lower thirds)
  • News 8 (1974-present; was shown in newscast as 'News8' in the past)
  • News 8 HD (2007-present)

Station slogans

  • Still the One, on Channel 8 (1979-1980; localized version of ABC ad campaign)
  • You and Me and Channel 8 (1980-1981; localized version of ABC ad campaign)
  • Now is the Time, Channel 8 is the Place (1981-1982; localized version of ABC ad campaign)
  • Come on Along with Channel 8 (1982-1983; localized version of ABC ad campaign)
  • That Special Feeling on Channel 8 (1983-1984; localized version of ABC ad campaign)
  • The Spirit of Texas (1984-present; originally created in anticipation of the sesquicentennial of the founding of the state of Texas in 1986)
    • Variations: Working In The Spirit of Texas, In The Spirit of Texas
  • Together on Channel 8 (1986-1987; localized version of ABC ad campaign)
  • Something's Happening on Channel 8 (1987-1990; localized version of ABC ad campaign)
  • Dallas-Fort Worth's Watching Channel 8 (1990-1992; localized version of ABC's "America's Watching" ad campaign)
  • If It's Channel 8, It Must Be ABC (1992-1993; localized version of ABC ad campaign)
  • First in News, First in HDTV (2007-present; sub-slogan is unofficial)
    • Variation: First in HDTV
  • Start Here (2007-present; for all other programming, also the slogan for ABC)
  • Trust Troy, Trust News 8 Weather (used in promotion of former chief weather anchor, Troy Dungan)
Television.svg This film, television or video-related list is incomplete; you can help by expanding it with reliably sourced additions.

News music packages

The "Spirit" news music package that was used on WFAA's newscasts was written by James R. Kirk of TM Productions. The "Spirit" news music package was used from 1984 until 1991. All of WFAA's news music packages have carried the "Spirit" motif, including a theme used from 1992-1996. WFAA also used McKinney, TX-based Stephen Arnold Music's "Spirit" from 1996-2000, a package customized by the station and composed by Arnold from 2000-2004, the News Matrix package from 2004-2005, and the Evolution package from 2004-2007 (which all carry the same signature that TM Productions' package used). They switched to a brand new 615 Music package called "Propulsion" (which is also based on the Spirit signature logo). This package is also being rolled out to several other Belo owned stations.

Other former packages used by WFAA include Tuesday Productions'"TuesdayC" from 1978-1980, and TM Productions' "Newsbeat" from 1980-1984.

In addition to its use by WFAA, the Spirit signature was also used in a news theme comissioned by sister station and CBS affiliate KHOU in Houston (who also used the original TM Productions "Spirit" theme from 1986-1989), called "American Spirit" composed by John Hegner and used from 1994 to 2000. WFAA's "Spirit" campaign has been the basis for campaigns at sister stations like KHOU-TV, WVEC-TV, WWL-TV, and KXTV.


WFAA-AM was the radio counterpart to the TV station. It signed on June 26, 1922,[24] and used the WFAA call letters through July 2, 1983. (Thereafter, it was known as "KRQX" until Belo sold it, along with sister station KZEW-FM {the former WFAA-FM,} on January 1, 1987.) WFAA-AM has a rich history of service to the Dallas area. Moving around the AM dial, as most stations did in the 1920s and 1930s, the station settled into a permanent stay at 570 AM by 1938, while splitting time with WBAP at their clear-channel frequency of 820. This was the longest timeshare agreement in the US, starting in 1929 and concluding on April 27, 1970.

WFAA-AM was the first network-affiliated station in Texas (initially with NBC beginning April 2, 1923; later with Texas Quality Network, then ABC [to August 1, 1975] and CBS thereafter,) the first US station to carry educational programs, the first to produce a serious radio drama series, the first to air a state championship football game, and the first to air presidential inaugural ceremonies. WFAA-AM was home to the long-running morning program, "The Early Birds", hosted by John Allen; "Hymns We Love", "Saturday Night Shindig", "The Big D Jamboree", "Murray Cox RFD", "Slo-and-Ezy", and later, "57 Nostalgia Place."

After many years of an entertainment/variety format, the station flipped to Middle of the Road in 1970, followed by Top 40. On Election Day 1976, the station made its final format change to News/Talk (As "Newstalk 570.")

WFAA-AM was initially located in a 9' x 9' tent on the roof of The Dallas Morning News; to the Morning News library thereafter; to the Baker Hotel on October 1, 1925; atop the Santa Fe Railroad Warehouse on Jackson St. from June 20, 1941 to April 4, 1961 (the building still has "WFAA" clearly painted along a panel on the top floor) and to Communications Center, which was dropped entirely a few years ago.

Sister station WFAA-FM was the first FM to sign on in Texas, beginning October 5, 1946 as "KERA-FM" (no relation to the current radio and TV station known under the same call letters,) although its roots go back to an experimental FM station "W5X1C" that signed on October 15, 1945, and another experimental trial dating back to 1939. By 1947, it had moved from its original home at 94.3 FM to a preferred location in the center of the dial at 97.9 FM. With FM broadcasting in its infancy, WFAA-FM signed on and off the air for months and even two years at a time before settling on a permanent broadcast schedule by 1965. Initially a simulcast of the AM side, it programmed MOR and Beautiful Music until 1973, then flipped to album oriented rock (AOR) as KZEW-FM (known to listeners as The Zoo) on September 16, 1973. Featuring talent such as John LaBella and John Rody ("LaBella and Rody,") George Gimarc, Charley Jones, Dave Lee Austin, John B. Wells, Nancy Johnson, John Dew, John Dillon, Doc Morgan and Tempie Lindsey, the station's concept and programming were initially under the direction of Ira Lipson. The FM station shared studio locations with WFAA-AM on the second floor of the facility.


  • WFAA is one of the few television stations west of the Mississippi River with call letters beginning with a W. The FCC normally assigns stations west of the Mississippi call letters that begin with K; W is only used east of the Mississippi. The reason WFAA is different is that its call letters came from its sibling WFAA-AM, whose callsign predates this FCC policy.
  • WFAA had an FM radio station in Dallas. It was 97.9, but now WFAA does not own it and it is currently an urban radio station called KBFB-FM, 97.9 The Beat.
  • WFAA didn't have its current affiliate's logo in its branding until 2007.

External links


Specific references:

  1. ^ WFAA A Newsroom in Dallas That Serves Its Viewers from Broadcasting & Cable via
  2. ^ "Para Mapping Kine Network". Billboard: 13, 43. 1949-09-17. 
  3. ^
  4. ^ HDTV of WFAA |
  5. ^ WFAA-TV Fiftieth Anniversary
  6. ^
  7. ^ Channel 8 switches to digital signal - WFAA (released June 12, 2009)
  8. ^
  9. ^ CDBS Print
  10. ^
  11. ^ ""PROGRAMMING NOTE: "A Charlie Brown Christmas" and "Disney's Prep & Landing"". December 9, 2009. 
  12. ^ ""Charlie Brown Christmas" gets preempted again... this time, by WFAA". December 9, 2009. 
  13. ^
  14. ^ List of WFAA Peabody Awards from the Peabody Award website
  15. ^ 2000 Personal Award to Marty Haag from the Peabody Award website
  16. ^ 1995 The Peavy Investigation from the Peabody Award website
  17. ^ /details.php?id=1316 2002 Fake Drugs, Real Lives from the Peabody Award website
  18. ^ 2004 State of Denial from the Peabody Award website
  19. ^ Program Descriptions of 2009 duPont-Columbia Awards Winners from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism website
  20. ^ DISD's Ron Price goes to DA about Channel 8 investigations from the Dallas ISD blog of The Dallas Morning News
  21. ^ Grade-changing at Roosevelt High was widespread, says report from the WFAA website
  22. ^
  23. ^
  24. ^ WFAA, Texas turns on the radio

General references:


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