WLNS-TV: Wikis


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Lansing, Michigan
Branding WLNS 6
6 News
Slogan Your News Leader
Channels Digital: 36 (UHF)
Virtual: 6.1
Affiliations CBS
Owner Young Broadcasting, Inc.
(Young Broadcasting of Lansing, Inc., Debtor in Possession)
First air date May 1, 1950
Call letters’ meaning LaNSing
Sister station(s) WHTV
Former callsigns WJIM-TV (1950-1984)
Former channel number(s) Analog:
6 (1950-2009)
59 (2001-2009)
Former affiliations All secondary:
NBC (1950-1959)
ABC (1950-1958)
DuMont (1950-1955)[1]
Transmitter Power 984 kW (digital)
Height 288 m (digital)
Facility ID 74420
Transmitter Coordinates 42°41′19″N 84°22′35″W / 42.68861°N 84.37639°W / 42.68861; -84.37639
Website www.wlns.com

WLNS-TV is the CBS television affiliate serving the Lansing/Jackson, Michigan television market in the United States. It broadcasts its digital signal on UHF channel 36 from a 306-meter (1,004-foot) transmitter located midway between East Lansing and the town of Williamston, giving it a signal footprint in many parts of southern and central Michigan.

The station's studio facility is also home to the operations of its sister station and the market's MyNetworkTV affiliate, WHTV. WLNS also handles the master control for sister station WBAY-TV, based in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

Syndicated programming on WLNS include Entertainment Tonight, The Insider, Dr. Phil, and The Doctors.



WLNS signed on the air on May 1, 1950 as WJIM-TV, owned by Harold F. Gross along with WJIM-AM 1240. It is Michigan's second-oldest station outside of Detroit (behind Grand Rapids' WOOD-TV). Gross had started WJIM-AM, the first commercial radio station in Lansing, in 1934, and both stations were named after his son Jim. Rumour has it that Mr. Gross won the original radio license in a card game. It originally broadcast from the top of a bank in downtown Lansing before moving to its current location on Saginaw Street (known as "the country house") in 1953. Mr. Gross was skeptical of the success of TV, so the new facilities were designed as a motel, complete with pool, in case television didn't catch on. Needless to say, the pool had very little use except for the occasional employee party.

WJIM-TV carried programming from all four major networks, though it was and always has been a primary CBS affiliate. ABC disappeared from the schedule in 1958 when WJRT-TV signed on from Flint; it served as Lansing's default ABC affiliate until WLAJ signed on in 1990. WXYZ-TV in Detroit served as the default affiliate for Jackson. WKZO-TV, now WWMT (then a partial ABC affiliate), as well as WSJV in Elkhart, Indiana served as default affiliates for Battle Creek until WUHQ-TV (now WOTV) went on the air.

DuMont programming disappeared when that network ceased operations in 1956. NBC would also later disappear from the schedule in 1959 when WILX-TV signed on as an NBC affiliate, leaving WJIM with just CBS. In 1960, Gross added WJIM-FM to his holdings.

The local chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union challenged the station's license in 1973, on allegations that Gross prevented a number of prominent political figures from appearing on WJIM-TV, among other accusations. [2] An FCC judge ordered WJIM's license revoked in 1981--only the second time a station has had its license revoked for violating the FCC's fairness guidelines. The first instance was WLBT-TV in Jackson, Mississippi; which lost its license in 1969 due to its blatant bias against the Civil Rights Movement. Unlike WLBT, however, WJIM kept its license after the initial revocation was reversed by a three-member review board at the FCC in 1982. The ACLU agreed to a cash settlement in 1984.

The stress of the licensing dispute led Gross to sell the station to Unicom Inc, a unit of Forstmann Little, d.b.a. Backe Communications, soon after the cash settlement was approved. After the sale, the station adopted its current call letters of WLNS. Unicom's ownership of the station was short-lived as in 1986 it sold WLNS and WKBT in La Crosse, Wisconsin to current owner Young Broadcasting (however, WKBT has since been sold to Morgan Murphy Stations).

Young Broadcasting filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in early 2009. The company will soon be taken over by the company's secured lenders and have the operations of most of its stations outsourced to Gray Television. WLNS will not be part of the management agreement because Gray already owns and operates WILX.

Flint and Detroit

WJIM doubled as Flint's CBS affiliate for many years, as its signal--the second-strongest in Michigan at the time it signed on--decently covers the city and surrounding Genesee County. For many years, it identified as "Lansing/Flint/Jackson/Battle Creek" on-air. In 1972, Saginaw's then-CBS affiliate WEYI-TV moved its studios and transmitter to Clio, just north of Flint. Until the early 1980s, Flint was served by two CBS stations, though during the 1980s, WJIM/WLNS chose to concentrate more on Lansing. Comcast dropped WLNS in Flint as a result. However, WLNS is still easily viewable in Flint and Saginaw with a good antenna.

WLNS' signal also reaches as far as the Detroit area, mostly in northwestern Detroit and the city's western suburbs. Its signal is strongest in fast-growing Livingston County, some parts of which actually get city-grade coverage. Despite WLNS's transmitter being only ten miles west of the Ingham / Livingston County line, Livingston County is part of the Detroit DMA. For many years, it was long rumored that Detroiters positioned their antennas towards Lansing to pick up Detroit Lions games blacked out on WJBK.

For many years, WLNS' programming was seen on a low-powered repeater, W67AJ, in Ann Arbor, part of the Detroit DMA. It was owned by Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti. W67AJ's license was canceled in January 2007 by the Federal Communications Commission. [3]

Digital Television

After the analog television shutdown on June 12, 2009, WLNS-TV moved its digital broadcasts to channel 36, from channel 59 [1] using PSIP to be displayed as virtual channel 6.

WLNS was not allowed to use 36 initially because nearby Flint station WJRT-TV was previously using 36 for its digital transmissions. However on June 12, WJRT-TV moved its digital broadcasts to channel 12, allowing WLNS to use 36 without causing interference.

News Team


Current personalities


  • Evan Pinsonnault - weekday mornings and noon
  • Lauren Thompson - weekday mornings and noon
  • Jane Aldrich - weeknights at 5 and 6
  • Dave Akerly - weeknights at 6 and 11
  • Sheri Jones - weeknights at 11
  • Ann Emmerich - weekends at 6 and 11


  • Jake Dunne - weekday mornings and noon
  • David Young (chief meteorologist) - weeknights at 5, 6, and 11
  • Jim Geyer - weekends at 6 and 11

Weather radar called "Live StormTracker 6 Doppler Radar"


  • Fred Heumann - weeknights at 6 and 11 and The Fifth Quarter
  • Lisa Byington - weekends, Sunday Sports Overtime, and The Fifth Quarter

Friday nights at 11:15pm during high school football and basketball season is called The Fifth Quarter.


  • Mona Shand
  • Ann Emmerich
  • Stephanie Kolp
  • Katherine Jones
  • Darren Cunningham
  • Allison Bourne-Vanneck (sports)

Past Personalities

  • Angela Cunningham - former reporter; now with WZZM
  • Greg Adaline - former morning anchor: now with KCTV
  • Tetiana Anderson - former reporter; now with the Weather Channel
  • David Andrews - former anchor; now with WILX
  • Rob Dale - former meteorologist; now with Eaton County Emergency Management
  • Jill Dobson - former reporter; now entertainment correspondant with Fox News Channel
  • Brad Edwards - former weekend anchor/reporter; now with WJBK
  • Mara MacDonald - former reporter, now with WDIV
  • Pat Michaels - former meteorologist
  • Jo Anne Paul - former anchor; now with WJIM
  • Andy Provenzano - former meteorologist; now with WILX
  • Amy Rao - former weekend anchor/reporter; now with WTVF Nashville
  • Taryn Asher - former morning anchor; now with WJBK
  • Terry Stanton - former anchor; now Deputy Spokesperson for Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm
  • Tim Staudt - former sports anchor; now with WILX
  • Anya Tucker - former morning anchor; now with WTEN Albany
  • Emily Wagner - former morning anchor; now with WOOD-TV (known as Emily Linnert)
  • Jeff Campbell - former weekend anchor/reporter; now with WCNC
  • Pamela Land - former meteorologist

News/Station Presentation

Newscast Titles

  • Six Star News (1970s-early 1980s)
  • Newscenter 6 (early 1980s-2001)
  • WLNS Newscenter 6 (2001-2003)
  • 6 News (2003-present)

Station Slogans

  • We're Lansing's News Source (1980s)
  • Leadership That Works For You (1994-1998)
  • Where Local News Comes First (1998-2003)
  • Local News First (2003-2006)
  • Your News Leader (2006-present)
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  1. ^ WLNS-TV Official Site - What the DTV Transition means for you

External links


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