Favorite

Dewayne speaks! 

Plus: “Active Years” gets a face lift.

click to enlarge DEWAYNE GRAHAM: Leaves Fox.
  • DEWAYNE GRAHAM: Leaves Fox.
Investigative reporter Dewayne Graham, recently departed from KLRT Fox 16, took some time out for a chat recently. Graham said the decision to leave Fox was his own, the result of disappointment over assignments that had him on “rat and roach patrol” and an understaffed newsroom that forced him to pull off investigative stories to help cover daily events. When he was hired, Graham said, he was told he would be strictly on the investigative beat, due to his past experience as a reporter with KATV’s “Seven on Your Side.” “That’s the way it started out, and it turned out to be more general assignment type things — covering school board meetings, when the snow came, the rains came, the sleet came and the roads froze over, doing reports on that sort of thing.” It led to a growing frustration for Graham, who said he often found himself pushing stories to the back burner and then having to explain to his sources why their stories didn’t air. “People would call up and say, ‘You used to do this kind of thing on Seven on Your Side. Why don’t you do it now?’” Graham also grumbled about the station’s propensity for filling airtime with “live shots in front of empty buildings in the dark.” “Were we in Pine Bluff or Sheridan? Who knows?” Graham chuckled. “I have a theory on this. A live shot is a necessity, an important element to the story — when there is a reason for being live. When you’re live just for being live, that’s not the purpose and the function of a news organization.” (Graham could have added that the live shot in front of a site where nothing is going on is a staple at other stations, too.) Graham said one thing that helped him make the decision to leave was a recent assignment to find the “Dirty Dozen,” the 12 dirtiest restaurants in Little Rock — what he called “rat and roach patrol.” “I didn’t like that,” he laughed. “Somehow I just got wind that it was coming up again, that there was more of it coming, and I was just: no, uh-uh. I don’t want to go looking for roaches.” Still in negotiations with KLRT over elements of his contract — including a non-compete clause — Graham is currently in discussions with a publisher in Atlanta to publish a series of books. He is also working on free-lance articles, lobbying state legislators as a consumer advocate, and continuing to take care of his wife, who is recovering from a December surgery to remove a benign cyst at the base of her brain. “They [at Fox 16] were very considerate about the fact that she was ill and that I had a lot on my mind,” he said. “But we couldn’t nail down what we agreed to a year ago, which was to do this kind of in-depth reporting. It started out that way, but kind of veered off course. So I just said ‘I’m sorry, I need to move on. It’s just not working out.’ ” KLRT News Director Michael Fabac refused to comment on Graham’s departure, citing station policy on personnel matters. You knew the Baby Boomers were getting older when you started seeing ads for hemorrhoid creams and Lincoln Continentals featuring Led Zeppelin tunes (a stroke of marketing genius: The Rolling Stones singing “I can’t get no satisfaction” for Ex-Lax! Get Madison Avenue on the horn!). In the Little Rock market, the newest stab at the recalibration of middle age seems to be going on over at Active Years magazine. Though never quite marketed to the scooters-and-Craftmatic-adjustable-beds set (a recent press release says they’re targeted to the “40-plus reader”), the 35,000-circulation magazine started its 17th year by morphing — in name at least — into the much more with-it sounding “AY” (As in “Ay-Wye.”) Besides the snazzy new name, publisher Vicki Vowell says the magazine will remain virtually unchanged, calling the swap a step toward “dropping the formalities.” “We’re just encompassing the expansion of our readership and the attitude of our readership,” Vowell said. “With the new name, ‘AY,’ it’s just a little more hip, a little more fun.” Tips? Info? Nekkid pics of local celebs? david@arktimes.com
Favorite

From the ArkTimes store

Tags:

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

More by David Koon

Most Shared

  • 'Cemetery angel' Ruth Coker Burks featured in new short film

    Ruth Coker Burks, the AIDS caregiver and activist memorably profiled by David Koon as the cemetery angel in Arkansas Times in 2015, is now the subject of a short film made by actress Rose McGowan.
  • Buyer remorse

    Out here in flyover country, you can't hardly go by the feed store without running into a reporter doing one of those Wisdom of the Heartland stories.
  • Not Whitewater

    Just think: If Democrats had turned out 78,000 more votes in three states in November, people could be reveling today in the prospect of impeaching and convicting President Hillary Clinton, not Donald Trump, as some Republican lawmakers had promised to try to do if she won.
  • Head-shaking

    Another edition of so-much-bad-news-so-little space.

Latest in Media

  • UA cozy with D-G columnist

    An interesting element of the ongoing story of budget problems in the University of Arkansas Advancement Division has been a divide in outlook in the pages of the state's dominant news medium, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.
    • Nov 21, 2013
  • Democrat-Gazette covers one of its own in story of reporter Cathy Frye's rescue

    The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette's reports on the rescue of its reporter Cathy Frye, who was missing for days in the hot scrubby desert that is Big Bend Ranch State Park, are gripping.
    • Oct 10, 2013
  • Hodge shares his OA vision

    Roger Hodge, the new editor of Oxford American magazine, talked about his rise at Harper's, his writing philosophy and his plans for the OA before a full crowd last Wednesday at the Clinton School.
    • Sep 26, 2012
  • More »

Event Calendar

« »

July

S M T W T F S
  1
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29
30 31  

Most Recent Comments

  • Re: Buyer remorse

    • It's just that always when somebody criticizes trump, you bring up Hillary. Why? Why am…

    • on July 28, 2017
  • Re: Buyer remorse

    • Oh, my - I don't hate Hillary Clinton - I feel she is damaged goods…

    • on July 28, 2017
  • Re: Buyer remorse

    • IBS, you're from Chicago, right? Hillary's from Chicago. Your monomania against Hillary is puzzling and…

    • on July 27, 2017
 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation