Major retiring from WFTS-TV in Tampa

Mon, August 28, 2000 by Mark Kroeger

CINCINNATI – Jim Major, who for 15 years has served as vice president and general manager of WFTS-TV, Channel 28, in Tampa, has announced his retirement.Major, 66, is completing a 43-year career that began as a television producer and director for the U.S. Army. He became general manager of WFTS in 1985 and oversaw its transition from an independent station with 45 employees to an ABC network affiliated station with 175 employees.Major, whose successor will be named soon, will serve as a consultant through Jan. 1, 2001. WFTS is owned and operated by The E.W. Scripps Company, which is headquartered in Cincinnati.“It’s been a wonderful 15-year run and the station is in good shape and well positioned for further growth,” Major said. “We have a great staff, our department heads are outstanding, and we’re justifiably proud of the product we put on the air.”Jim Hart, vice president/broadcasting for Scripps, praised Major for “his steadfast leadership during a critical time in the history of WFTS. Under his guidance, Channel 28 has grown to become a major, metropolitan television station that competes successfully on every level in the Tampa TV market. His successor will be the beneficiary of his many fine accomplishments.”Major came to WFTS from Petry Television Inc. in New York City, where he served as programming vice president. A graduate of Marquette University, he also has held television station management positions in Milwaukee, Detroit and San Francisco.Major said he will continue to maintain his primary residence in the Tampa area and that he and his wife, Barbara, will continue to be active in the community. Major serves as a director on the boards of the Outback Bowl, the Hillsborough Educational Foundation, and the national board of the Muscular Dystrophy Association. He also is past president of the National Association of Television Program Executives (NATPE).WFTS is an operating subsidiary of The E.W. Scripps Company. Scripps is a diverse media concern with interests in newspaper publishing, broadcast television, cable television programming and interactive media. Scripps operates 20 daily newspapers, 10 broadcast TV stations and three cable television networks, with plans to launch a fourth.Scripps cable television network brands include Home & Garden Television, Food Network, Do It Yourself, and Fine Living, due to launch in the second half of 2001.The company also operates Scripps Howard News Service, United Media, the worldwide licensing and syndication home of PEANUTS and DILBERT, and 31 Web sites, including hgtv.com, foodtv.com, diynet.com and comics.com.