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Gina Corraled by San Diego

One of Tucson's more familiar traffic-reporting voices, Gina Corral, has accepted a position with Metro Networks in San Diego, bringing to an end her longtime relationship with Tucson in a radio and television capacity.

"I am being transferred with the company, and I'm really looking forward to it," Corral said. "The company had a position that was open. I went ahead and threw my name in the hat, and I've been selected for that position."

Corral will take over as the new director of operations for Metro in San Diego.

"It's pretty much the same job I've been doing here," Corral said. "I'll be overseeing a certain number of people on the staff, and maintaining relationships with radio and TV stations, and hopefully doing some on-air work from time to time. From my understanding, there isn't any on-air work to begin with."

Corral is one of those rare Tucson media entities: a lifelong native. It's a move filled with apprehension and excitement.

"My family is here. My friends are here. Everything I know is here," Corral said. "It's hard to leave Tucson, but at the same time it's a new opportunity and new challenges. And it's San Diego, 103 versus 73. I just love it here, but at the same time, I've just got to give something else a try."

Corral has been employed by Tucson's Metro Networks outlet for 10 years.


BIRMINGHAM ANSWERS ULTIMATUM, CHOOSES KNST

Certain corporate sorts don't take kindly to their employees working with a competitive company, even if the two jobs aren't in the same field.

Despite spending six months under the Journal Communications umbrella at KGUN Channel 9, and 2 1/2 years with the local ABC affiliate when it was owned by Emmis Communications, the TV station finally told assignment editor/associate producer Paul Birmingham he had to choose between remaining employed with KGUN, or Clear Channel-owned KNST AM 790, where he's worked for eight years.

"The news director at KGUN came to me to tell me essentially it was a problem working for the two stations, the two companies," Birmingham said. "I responded the next day by resigning. Professionally, I feel that KNST provides me with the best opportunity to do what I love, and that's to be a reporter and an anchor. I would still be willing to work for another television station, because I love working in TV as an assignment editor. However, in this particular instance, somebody at corporate at Journal felt there was a conflict with me working for the two stations.

"If another TV station were to have a position similar to what I was working, I would definitely give that serious consideration, but right now, it's just professionally best for me to stay with the career I've been at for more than eight years, working as a reporter for KNST. We do better than anybody out there as far as getting news."


KOLD STRIKES OUT ON SOFTBALL COVERAGE

When the University of Arizona softball team won its seventh national title last week, one television station was there for the triumphant event--while another encountered a myriad of problems that led to the station ultimately missing the title round.

Laurence Scott, KOLD Channel 13's temporary No. 2 sports anchor, traveled to Oklahoma City for the College World Series on Friday and Saturday, June 2 and 3, where he provided live coverage. However, problems arose Sunday with an arrangement to land a freelance photographer. This combined with interference from prior engagements that tied into Scott's planned vacation, and possible flight-connection issues.

"He had to jump through hoops just to get there," KOLD sports director Scott Kilbury said. "He had a six-hour delay somewhere and didn't want to do that again. He could go, then at one point he could stay, and said he could get a direct flight for where he needed from there, and then the next day, he said he ran into problems and couldn't guarantee a photographer. It was just frustrating."

Kilbury says management approached him about the prospect of making the trek to Oklahoma City at the last minute. That played a role in the confusion.

"We didn't think it out. I take responsibility for that," Kilbury said. "It just wasn't well planned. ... I don't know. It would have been good for the radio. (Kilbury co-hosts The Shootout with Scott on KCUB AM 1290, the station that employs me during the UA football and basketball season.) It would have been good for the TV. It would have been good for everyone involved. The kids deserved it. It's one thing not going, but going and coming back early, it's a bummer.

"Laurence said he was going to have to leave, and I didn't know what time he had to come back. It was just not good. He didn't take a camera; we were relying on a freelance guy, and then that fell through. He couldn't guarantee a camera and photographer. It was just frustrating. We were understaffed and decided we'd send one person. I'm not clear how it all went down."

Meanwhile, KMSB Channel 11's coverage went well. Brandon Nash filed reports for the Fox affiliate and news-trading partner KVOA Channel 4, and as such was apparently the only local television reporter on the scene when the UA routed Northwestern for its first national championship since 2001.

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