“Nightly Business Report” lays off seven, closes Chicago bureau
by Chris Roush
“Nightly Business Report,” which is aired on more than 350 PBS stations across the country, has laid off seven staffers and closed its Chicago bureau, Talking Biz News has confirmed.
Among those losing their jobs were Midwest bureau chief Diane Eastabrook, a gifted storytellers and resourceful reporter, and videographer and editor Mike Prendergast, a talented and creative shooter who makes a real contribution from behind the lens.
Also departing was part-time producer Hart Billings, whose technical and organizational skills were described as a real asset for our Chicago bureau.
“We regret the eliminations and recognize the significant contributions made by all those affected by today’s actions,” said Tom Hudson, managing editor of “Nightly Business Report” and co-anchor of the show, in an email to Talking Biz News. “These are all very talented professionals. I consider it an honor to call them colleagues. NBR thanks them for their service and we wish them well in the future endeavors.”
The show laid off eight people in November 2010. Last year, its managing editor and executive vice president lost their jobs.
The show has been undergoing major changes in recent years, including being sold twice. Atalaya Capital Management acquired the 33-year-old program for an undisclosed price in November 20111. Five-year-old Atalaya is based in New York and has primarily been an acquirer of corporate and real estate debt.
“Nightly Business Report” launched in Miami in January 1979. It became a national program in 1981. The show was acquired in 2010 by Mykalai Kontilai, who had been overhauling its operations before selling it to Atalaya. The show is co-anchored by Susie Gharib and Hudson.