WFMJ-TV: Wikis


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WFMJ logo.png
Youngstown, Ohio
Branding 21 WFMJ
21 News
Slogan More Local News
Channels Digital: 20 (UHF)
Virtual: 21 (PSIP)
Subchannels 21.1 NBC
21.2 The CW
Owner Vindicator Printing Company
(WFMJ Television, Inc.)
First air date March 8, 1953
Call letters’ meaning William F. Maag, Jr.
Former channel number(s) Analog:
73 (1953-1954)
21 (1954-2009)
Transmitter Power 460 kW (digital)
Height 295 m (digital)
Facility ID 72062
Transmitter Coordinates 41°4′48″N 80°38′25″W / 41.08°N 80.64028°W / 41.08; -80.64028

WFMJ-TV digital channel 20 (virtual channel 21) is the NBC affiliate in Youngstown, Ohio.



The station was founded on channel 73 on March 8, 1953 by the Maag family (the station's call letters, WFMJ corresponding to founder William F. Maag, Jr.'s initials), owners of The Youngstown Vindicator and WFMJ radio (now WNIO-AM and WQXK-FM). The Maags then purchased the construction permit issued for channel 21 (originally granted to WUTV) and moved to that frequency on August 7, 1954.

Channel 21's studios are located on West Boardman Street in downtown Youngstown; its transmitter is located on Mabel Street in Youngstown. WFMJ-TV's signal can be picked up as far away as suburban Cleveland; it serves extremely of eastern Ohio and extreme western Pennsylvania.

WFMJ is the only locally owned and operated station in the market, and, in fact, one of the few stations left in the country that is still locally owned and operated. The station points it out very often in advertisements, as the "Only Locally-Owned Station in Youngstown", compared with rivals WKBN-TV (owned by New Vision Television, which also owns low-power Fox affiliate WYFX-LP) and WYTV (owned by Parkin Broadcasting, which also owns the My Network TV digital subchannel MY-YTV, but operated under a local marketing agreement with WKBN parent New Vision). As a result, WFMJ has been a strong ratings force in Youngstown for several years with first place ratings in its morning, 6 and 11pm newscasts. WFMJ's newscasts typically garnish higher ratings than its competitors combined in the morning, 6 and 11 newscasts.

WFMJ is one of the few stations in the country that can boast airing Live with Regis and Kelly, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Dr. Phil and Oprah on the same station. WFMJ's morning show (WFMJ Today), Today and Live with Regis and Kelly ratings are among the highest in the country. WFMJ is also the Youngstown market's carrier station for the Ohio Lottery and its weekly game show, Cash Explosion Double Play. On Thursday October 29, 2009 at 6:00pm the station's weather graphics were changed to 3D:LIVE weather central system.

Cable positions

WFMJ can be seen on Time Warner Youngstown cable channel 3, Armstrong channel 2, and Time Warner Warren channel 4. It can also be seen on Comcast Channel 7 and in HD on Channel 721 in New Castle & Bessemer, both of which are located in Western Pennsylvania. WFMJ is also carried on both the DirecTV and Dish Network home satellite systems.

Local sports programming

WFMJ founded the market's first expanded Friday Night high school football coverage with The Overtime Report. WFMJ also carries Youngstown State University away football games live along with Penguin Gameday and the YSU coaches show for both football and basketball. WFMJ also airs local sports coverage during the morning, 6 P.M., and 11 P.M. newscasts.

On-air staff changes

Autumn Ziemba, co-anchor of WFMJ's 6 and 11 p.m. news broadcasts, left WFMJ in June 2007 after her contract ended. She stated that she made the decision in order to pursue other interests and spend more time with her family. On her last night as co-anchor, an announcement was made of her plans; however, viewers were unable to hear the announcement due to inclement weather that caused the channel's signal to go out. Afterwards, Ziemba got married and was a freelance reporter for WEWS in Cleveland; she is currently a weekend reporter for WJW. She was replaced by Cindy Matthews in January 2008.

Digital TV



WFMJ-DT broadcasts on digital channel 20.

Digital channels

Channel Name Programming
21.1 WFMJ-DT WFMJ-HD/NBC programming
21.2 WFMJ-DT2 WBCB: The Valley's CW

21 WFMJ news team


  • Scott Schneider - Morning co-anchor of "WFMJ Today" & noon co-anchor
  • Lauren Lindvig - Morning co-anchor of "WFMJ Today" & noon co-anchor
  • Bob Black - Evening co-anchor at 6PM & 11PM
  • Cindy Matthews - Evening co-anchor at 6PM & 11PM
  • Jennifer Baligush - Weekend anchor at 6PM & 11PM / reporter


  • Mike Case - Morning reporter / fill-in anchor
  • Michelle Nicks - Evening reporter
  • Talia Hagler - Reporter
  • Glenn Stevens - Reporter / fill-in anchor
  • Sally Phillips - Reporter / fill-in weekend anchor
  • Janet Rogers - Reporter
  • Matt Stone - Reporter / fill-in weather
  • Susan Campbell - Health reporter

Storm Tracker 21

  • Mark Koontz - Chief Meteorologist
  • Mark Monstrola - Morning & noon meteorologist
  • Tina Pietrondi - Weekend meteorologist

21 Sports

  • Dana Balash - Sports Director
  • Mike Ackelson - Weekend sports anchor / sports reporter
  • Rob Decker - Sports reporter / fill-in sports anchor

Former personalities

  • Kelly Stevens - now at WHOT-FM
  • Richard W. "Dick" Skelton - Retired in 2007, died on May 29, 2008
  • Katie Keifer - was at KCNC-TV
  • Aimee Fuller - Noon & weekend anchor in the mid-1990s - now at KUSI-TVSan Diego
  • Chuck Galeti - now at WOIO-TV
  • Dr. Dave Walker - now at WTRF-TV
  • Joyce Brewer - now at WAPT-TV
  • Lisa Montgomery - now at WTOV-TV
  • Jim Lowboy - now at WYTV
  • Renee Murphy - now at WHAS-TV
  • Tracy Butler - now at WLS-TV
  • Laura Steele - was at WGRZ-TV
  • Dennison Keller - now at WKRC-TV; also a full-time lawyer
  • Pamla Miles - Action news at noon in the 1990s
  • Nicole Perry - First co-host of WFMJ Today
  • Mary Hunt - 6 & 11 anchor in the mid-1990s
  • Melissa Marsh - now at Time-Warner Cable as an advertising account executive
  • Lauren Schultz - Weekend news in the 1980s and 1990s
  • Michelle Casas - Weekend news in the mid-1990s
  • Dave Trygar - Weather, weekdays; now at KDKA-TV in Pittsburgh
  • Marc Howard - Anchor; retired after many years at WPVI and KYW-TV in Philadelphia
  • Dawn McMurray - 6 & 11 anchor, 1993-1997
  • Autumn Ziemba - 6 & 11 anchor - now at WJW in Cleveland
  • Frank Marzullo - former "WFMJ Today" morning weather anchor, now at WXIX-TV Cincinnati
  • Laurie Lehosky - former "WFMJ Today" morning news anchor

News/station presentation

Newscast titles

  • 21 Action News (1989-2001)
  • 21 News (2001-present)

Station slogans

  • 21, Proud as a Peacock (1979-1981; localized version of NBC ad campaign)
  • Come Home to the Best, Only on 21 (1988-1990; localized version of NBC ad campaign)
  • WFMJ, The Place to Be (1990-1992; localized version of NBC ad campaign)
  • In Touch With You (1990-1993)
  • Your News Leader (1993-1999)
  • More Local News (2000-present)
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Other stations

WFMJ also owns Youngstown's CW affiliate, WBCB. It operates WBCB as one of its digital subchannels and is available on all area cable systems on an analog basis including channel #16 on Armstrong and channel #14 on Time Warner. WBCB is also carried as a local channel available on the DirecTV home satellite system. WBCB launched in November 2004 as the market's first WB affiliate and was chosen by the new CW Network to serve the Youngstown DMA as its affiliate. The station carries a full 24/7 program schedule, including Seinfeld, TMZ, Extra, Access Hollywood, Friends, and Frasier.

While WFMJ still signs off on the weekends from about 2:30 AM to 4:30 AM (repeats of The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Late Night with Conan O'Brien and Last Call with Carson Daly from earlier in the evening usually air during the week between the first airing of Last Call and Early Today), WBCB still airs progamming during WFMJ's sign-off hours despite being on its digital subchannel. Since 2006, WFMJ has been the last station in the Youngstown market to sign off on a regular basis. WYTV, which from 1997-2006 signed off on a nightly basis, ended the practice with the launch of MY-YTV.

External links


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