Radio-TV Broadcast History

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WNYT is the NBC-affiliated television station for the Capital District of New York State and Western New England that is licensed to Albany. It broadcasts a high definition digital signal on VHF channel 12 from a transmitter southwest of the Voorheesville section of New Scotland. The station can also be seen on Time Warner channel 13 and in high definition on digital channel 1813. Owned by the Hubbard Broadcasting Corporation, WNYT has studios on North Pearl Street in Menands even though it has an Albany address. Syndicated programming on the station includes: Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, Deal or No Deal, Friends and Entertainment Tonight. WNYT is one of several NBC affiliates that do not air Poker After Dark.


Troy, New York

City of license Albany
Branding NewsChannel 13
Slogan Coverage You

Can Trust

Channels Digital: 12 (VHF)
Subchannels 13.1 NBC

13.2 local weather 13.3 weather radar

Translators 18 Troy

21 W21CP-D Gloversville 28 W28DA-D Pittsfield, MA 38 W38DL-D Adams, MA 45 Glens Falls

Owner Hubbard Broadcasting Corporation


First air date February 17, 1954
Call letters' meaning We're New York State Television
Sister station(s) WHEC-TV
Former callsigns WTRI (1954-1958)

WAST (1958-1981)

Former channel number(s) Analog:

35 (UHF, 1954-1958) 13 (VHF, 1958-2009)

Former affiliations ABC (1954–1977)

CBS (1977-1981) NBC Weather Plus (2005-2008, on DT2)

Transmitter power 15 kW
Height 435 m
Facility ID 73363
Transmitter coordinates 42°37′31.3″N 74°0′36.3″W / 42.625361°N 74.010083°W / 42.625361; -74.010083 (WNYT)

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Digital programming[]




RF channel

Video Aspect Programming
13.1 12.1 1080i 16:9 main WNYT programming/NBC HD
13.2 12.2 480i 4:3 WNYT-DT2 "WNYT NC 13 Now!"

(24-hour local weather channel)

13.3 12.3 480i 4:3 WNYT-DT3 "NewsChannel 13 First Warning Live Doppler" (weather radar and special events)


In addition to its main signals, WNYT operates five additional repeaters. Until the early-1990s, it maintained a translator in Kingston. This was first located on channel 63 but moved to channel 36 after the launch of WTZA in 1985. The translators were all built because WNYT's analog signal was not as strong as the other major stations in the Capital District (see below). All stations have since been converted from analog to digital even though the law currently exempts low-power repeaters to convert. Channels 18 and 45 retain the WNYT call sign.

Call letters Channel City of license Transmitter location Note
WNYT 18 Troy Bald Mountain located on former analog transmitter
W21CP-D 21 Gloversville southwest of town center until 2006, it had the call letters W07AJ but changed after WXXA-DT began broadcasting on digital channel 7
W28DA-D 28 Pittsfield south of downtown on South Mountain along U.S. 7/U.S. 20 until 2006, it had the call letters W07AI and was also changed due to sign on of WXXA-DT
W38DL-D 38 Adams Mount Greylock until 2005, it had the call letters W51AE and was changed due to the sign on of WNYA in Pittsfield
WNYT 45 Glens Falls southeastern Warren County


The station began broadcasting on February 17, 1954 as ABC affiliate WTRI licensed to Troy. The station aired an analog signal on UHF channel 35 and was co-owned with WTRY radio. WTRI's studios and transmitter were east of Troy on Bald Mountain. It left the air in January 1955 but returned in August 1956 as an ABC affiliate. In 1958, the station was re-licensed to Albany, moved to VHF channel 13, and received the new call letters WAST (for Albany/Schenectady/Troy). Originally, the station had wanted to take the "WTAS" calls (for Troy/Albany/Schenectady) but the similarity of the "TAS" letters to the news agency of the Soviet Union led to the use of WAST. It was sold to a company called Van Curler Broadcasting Corporation in 1959.

Shortly after the upgrade, WAST moved to a converted warehouse on the Albany/Menands town line on North Pearl Street (where it is today) which previously housed Selective Service records. Although improvements to WAST's signal had been made, it was still significantly weaker than the other television stations due to a sizable short spacing to New York City's WNDT (now WNET). Also, the Bald Mountain transmitter location (a legacy of the days when it was licensed to Troy) played a role as well. This forced WAST to build several translators to expand its coverage. The other stations in the market had their transmitters at a common location southwest of Voorheesville. In 1969, WAST was sold to Sonderling Broadcasting.

In 1977, the station switched affiliations with WTEN and became the Capital District's CBS affiliate. During the next year (1978), Viacom purchased Sonderling which made WAST the company's first television station holding. Ironically, Viacom had started as the syndication arm of CBS. On September 21, 1981, WAST swapped affiliations with WRGB and became the area's NBC affiliate. Seeking a fresh start and a new identity, Viacom decided to mark the affiliation change with the current call sign of WNYT. It is one of the few stations in the United States to have been a primary affiliate of all of the big three networks. In 1994, after Viacom bought Paramount Pictures, Viacom transferred all of its television holdings to Paramount's television arm, the Paramount Stations Group. Not long after that, Paramount announced formation of the United Paramount Network. It also announced it would sell off all of its non-UPN stations.

In 1996, Paramount/Viacom traded WNYT and WHEC-TV in Rochester to Hubbard Broadcasting Corporation for UPN affiliate WTOG-TV in the Tampa Bay area. WNYT signed-on its digital signal in October 2003 on VHF channel 12. Unlike the station's analog signal, WNYT-DT's transmitter was and continues to be southwest of Voorheesville with the market's other stations. On June 12, 2009, its digital signal remained on channel 12 when the analog to digital conversion was completed. [1]

News operation[]

[2][3]WNYT's news open.For many years, WNYT was a distant third in the area behind WRGB and WTEN. This was not only because it was the youngest station in the market but also because of its signal issues. Under Viacom ownership, the station expanded and modernized its studios, newsroom, and offices (including the market's first modern computers). The company also made a significant investment in electronic equipment including a satellite receiving news truck. Investment in talent increased on the channel with the building of its own talent and acquiring key personalities from other stations in the area.

WNYT had overtaken WTEN for the runner-up spot by the late-1980s, and in 1992, scored its first late news victory. Gradually, the station overtook longtime leader WRGB in other time slots. In Viacom's last sweeps period owning WNYT, the station won every time slot. It has remained the overall market leader under Hubbard ownership until mid-2009 when it lost the lead weeknights at 11 to WRGB in the May 2009 sweeps period. In November 2009, WNYT's weekday evening newscasts slipped to third place largely due to the station's decision to terminate many of its popular personalities.

Two years after Hubbard bought WNYT, it won the distinction of being the first and only station outside of New York City to win a regional Emmy award for best newscast in New York State. With the re-branding of the station's newscasts from News 13 to NewsChannel 13 in 1991, WNYT became the first station to use the "Live. Local. Late Breaking." tag line slogan which is now commonplace throughout the country.

In the mid-1990s, the station began an alliance with PBS affiliate WMHT. This led to WNYT producing several programs for WMHT including semi-regular town hall meetings, the weekly call-in show Health LINK (which continues today) and for two years the market's first 10 p.m. newscast on WMHT's then-secondary station WMHQ (now WCWN). This production was canceled due to a lack of support. From 2001 until 2004, WNYT also maintained a joint sales agreement (JSA) with Pax affiliate WYPX that included rebroadcasts of newscasts and local non-news programming. In 2001, WNYT opened the Berkshire County Bureau on South Church Street in Downtown Pittsfield to cover the Massachusetts side of the market. At that time, the bureau was the first of a Capital District station. After forging an alliance with the (Glens Falls) Post-Star, the Saratoga/North Country Bureau was opened on Broadway in Downtown Saratoga Springs in early-2004.

In December 2005, WNYT began broadcasting NBC Weather Plus on its second digital subchannel with a full launch coming two months later on Time Warner digital channel 556. On March 24, 2008, WNYT replaced its weekday noon news with an hour-long broadcast at 11 in the morning entitled Midday. Family Feud, which originally aired for a half-hour at that time, moved to the noon time slot and was eventually dropped. WNYT operates its own weather radar, known as "NewsChannel 13 First Warning Live Doppler" at its former analog transmitter site on Bald Mountain.

Newscast titles[]

  • WTRI-TV News (1954-1958)
  • WAST News (1958-1966)
  • WAST Eyewitness News (1966-1977)
  • 13 News (1977-1981)
  • TV-13 News (1981-1986)
    • 6 p.m. newscast was known as The 30 Minute News signifying its length versus the then hour long news on WRGB and WTEN
  • News 13 (1986-September 1991)
  • NewsChannel 13 (September 1991-present)

Station slogans[]

  • New York's 13 Country (1973-1978)
  • Look For Us on Channel 13 (1978-1979)
  • We'll Keep You Turn Us On Channel 13 (1978-1979; localized version of CBS ad campaign)
  • WAST Channel 13, You're Looking Good! (1979-1980; localized version of CBS ad campaign)
  • Looking Good Together on Channel 13 (1980-1981; localized version of CBS ad campaign)
  • Channel 13, Our Pride is Showing (1981-1982; localized version of NBC ad campaign)
  • We're Channel 13, Just Watch Us Now (1982-1983; localized version of NBC ad campaign)
  • Channel 13 There, Be There (1983-1984; localized version of NBC ad campaign)
  • Channel 13, Let's All Be There (1984-1986; localized version of NBC ad campaign)
  • Come Home To Channel 13 (1986-1987; localized version of NBC ad campaign)
  • Come On Home To Channel 13 (1987-1988; localized version of NBC ad campaign)
  • Come Home To The Best, Only on Channel 13 (1988-1990; localized version of NBC ad campaign)
  • Channel 13, is The Place to Be! (1990-1991; localized version of NBC ad campaign)
  • The Capitol Region's #1 Newscast (1997-2004)
  • Live. Local. Latebreaking. (1991-2009)
  • Coverage You Can Trust (2009-present)

News music packages[]

  • "Home Country"
  • "Look For Us"
  • "WNYT 1985 News"
  • "We Know What Happens"
  • "The One For All"
  • "Image IX"
  • "Prime News"
  • "NBC Stations"
  • "The Tower"
  • "LA Groove"

News team[]

[4][5]Its former analog transmitter and weather radar on Bald Mountain outside of Troy.Anchors

  • Phil Bayly - weekday mornings
  • Elaine Houston - weekdays at noon and 5:30
    • education and general assignment reporter
  • Jim Kambrich - weeknights at 5, 6, and 11
    • reporter
  • Benita Zahn - weeknights at 5 and 6
    • health reporter and Health LINK producer/host on WMHT
  • Jessica Layton - weeknights at 11
  • Dan Bazile - weekend mornings, reporter, and "Let's Eat" segment producer
  • Kumi Tucker - weekend evenings and reporter
  • Yvonne Perry - Real Estate Deals host

NewsChannel 13 First Warning Meteorologists

  • Bob Kovachick (AMS Seal of Approval) - Chief seen weeknights
  • Paul Caiano - weekday mornings as well as Monday and Tuesday at noon
  • Tim Drawbridge (AMS Seal of Approval) - weekend mornings, fill-in
  • Jason Gough (AMS Seal of Approval) - weekend evenings and Wednesday through Friday at noon, fill-in


  • Rodger Wyland - Director seen weeknights at 6 and 11
  • Andrew Catalon - weekend evenings and Big Board Sports host
    • "High School Player of the Week" segment producer


  • Mark Mulholland - Saratoga/North Country Bureau
  • Dan Bazile
  • Abigail Bleck
  • Subrina Dhammi
  • Bill Lambdin
  • Dan Levy
  • Beth Wurtmann

Notable past personnel[]

  • Nancy Cozean (?-1985) The first lead female weekday anchor in the Albany market, left in 1985 to co-anchor the evening newscast at upstart WTZA in Kingston, NY. Later became the mayor of the City of Poughkeepsie
  • Chris Kapostasy (Jansing) (1981-1998, was an anchor from 1987-1998) Now at MSNBC
  • Bob McNamara (Sports director, 1981-2001; amongst a handful of personnel hired by WNYT away from WRGB after its switch to CBS); died October 17, 2010.
  • Miles O'Brien Weekend anchor, mid-1980s; Now at CNN
  • Randy Salerno (Weekend anchor, 1988-93) Later went to WBBM-TV in Chicago; killed in snowmobile accident in 2008
  • Todd Gross (Chief meteorologist, 1980-1983)
  • Norm Sebastian (Former weekend, then weekday morning/noon meteorologist); deceased
  • Herb Stevens (Chief meteorolgist, 1983-1987) now appears as "The Skiing Weatherman".
  • Don Weeks (Weatherman during the late 1960s under the name of "Wally Weather") Now the morning show host at WGY, a position he has held since 1980


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External links[]