David Bernard signed off Friday after about 5 years as the chief meteorologist for CBS4. He came to South Florida way back in August of 2005 form WWL in New Orléans, right before Hurricane Katrina hit. Former WFOR hurricane specialist Bryan Norcross hired him as his eventual replacement.
Rumor has it the powers that be in New York City handed instructions to CBS4 management to dole out pay cuts, and according to the usual “people familiar with the situation” David Bernard passed on a “significant pay cut” offer, and decided to walk. Another former WFOR meteorologist, Jeff Berardelli, is said to have left for the same reasons.
No word on what’s next for David Bernard, and whether we would see him on TV in South Florida again. For now he’s staying in the area, his partner has connections to South Florida.
David Bernard’s last 6pm forecast:
David Bernard’s last 11pm forecast:
WFOR meteorologist Craig Setzer took a hard tumble while attempting to fly his flugtag plane in September at the National Red Bull Flugtag Miami. “Doing better, out of trauma center, very sore, no long-term damage” he tweeted a few hours later after the incident but now it seems his injuries may not have been so benign. Setzer had to have spinal surgery yesterday that “took longer than expected.” according to his last tweet.
Monday was Rick Folbaum’s first day at WFOR as the station’s new lead co-anchor and judging by the emails in the SFLTV inbox, so far so good. They had him paired with Cynthia Demos who, it seems, could be on track to inherit Shannon Hori’s seat. They have her featured in the station new promos that invite viewers to “watch the pros”, sample video below if you can get it playing.
WFOR hired Folbaum away from FOXNews hoping he will be the jolt that gives the station a much-needed boost in the ratings. Whether this would work, we will have to wait a while to see how viewers respond.
WFOR chief meteorologist David Bernard is said to be on his way out. According to GossipExtra, Bernard was offered a contract by the station for less than what he makes now so he decided to walk. He is the third high-profile personality to leave WFOR in less than a year, after main anchors Shannon Hori and Antonio Mora left just recently.
There is some disagreement about what’s actually prompting these changes. To some, WFOR management is freshening things up with new blood, to others it is management not wanting to spend big bucks on talent anymore, so those that don’t want to play along can leave and be replaced by less demanding talent. Or both. Though it does kind of make you wonder how big or small a check WFOR and CBS had to cut for Rick Folbaum to bring him from the network level down to a TV station in the 16th largest market? One whose newscasts local viewers are not exactly rushing to watch.
Want an interesting factoid? WSVN, once the perennial revolving door for talent, now has the longest-serving anchor team on Miami TV, at least among English stations. Belkys Nerey and Craig Stevens have been together since August 2003. Also, three of the station’s four main news anchors have been there for 20+ years each. And Phil Ferro, the longest-serving chief meteorologist since 2004, if you don’t count John Morales’ time at WLTV and WSCV. And of course Christine Cruz and Diana Diaz on ‘Today in Florida’ both of whom have been with WSVN since 1996 and 1998 respectively.
David Bernard will officially leave WFOR sometime in November.