By Lisa Diethelm
Arizona PBS plans to bolster its nightly news offerings starting Monday, Sept. 14 with an expanded one-hour news package bookended by “BBC World News America” and “PBS NewsHour.”
“Arizona Horizon” will air at 5 p.m. and “Cronkite News” will move to the 5:30 p.m. slot. The hour of local news will end with a new segment, “Break It Down,” which will be led by a rotating group of hosts who will discuss the issues and current events impacting the world.
“’Horizon’ delivers in-depth analysis of the policies and topics affecting you. ‘Cronkite News’ comes with the important look at news headlines and weather. Then ‘Break It Down’ is discussing the topics you’re talking about around your dinner table,” said Ebonye Delaney, assistant production manager at Arizona PBS. “It’s a jam packed hour of insightful news and it’s so important for our community to have programming like this on-air and on digital.”
Julia Wallace, interim general manager at Arizona PBS, said the hour change is to provide viewers with a natural flow of daily news that is credible, trustworthy and impactful.
“In the past year, we have seen tremendous growth in viewers tuning into ‘BBC World News America’ at 4:30 p.m. and ‘NewsHour’ at 6 p.m. We want to offer viewers two and a half hours of quality news viewing, with a great mix of international, national and local news. ‘Horizon’ has been moved to 5 p.m. as a more natural follow to ‘BBC,’” Wallace said.
“Cronkite News,” the news division of Arizona PBS, has bureaus in Phoenix, Los Angeles, and Washington D.C. Cronkite students and faculty editors alike produce broadcasts and digital media for Arizona viewers.
Arizona PBS is based in the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.
“We offer the variety of coverage you might not find on other news outlets from in-depth conversations, to lively debates and short documentaries in addition to the daily news coverage,” said Allysa Adams, executive producer at Arizona PBS.
In addition to the newscasts, there will also be an emphasis on digital and social media stories. Delaney said she and her team have been redesigning how to increase the digital news segments on Arizona PBS with online stories, social media and more.
With the online content supporting the broadcast, Delaney said the entire news program will give Arizona PBS an opportunity to reach its current audience in a new way, as well as expand viewership across Arizona.