Syracuse / Utica / Ithaca, New York
Branding CBS 5
Slogan News that matters most.
Channels Analog: 5 (VHF)

Digital: 47 (UHF)

Affiliations CBS
Owner Granite Broadcasting Corporation
Licensee WTVH License, Inc.
First air date December 1, 1948
Call letters' meaning TeleVision
H (from it's time as WHEN-TV)
Former callsigns WHEN-TV (1948-1976)
Former channel number(s) 8 (1948-1961)
Former Affiliations All secondary:
NBC (1948-1950)
ABC (1948-1962)
DuMont (1948-1955)
Transmitter Power 83.2 kW (analog)
500 kW (DT)
Height 290 m (analog)
290.1 m (DT)
Facility ID 74151
Website CBS 5's Website

WTVH is the CBS network affiliate in Syracuse, New York. It also serves the Utica/Rome area. It's transmitter is located in La Fayette, New York.

This station broadcasts on VHF ch. 5 & in HD on UHF ch. 47 as authorized by the FCC & is O&O by Granite Broadcasting Corporation.


WTVH debuted on December 1, 1948 as WHEN-TV on ch. 8. It went on the air as Syracuse's 1st TV station & the 1st station ever O&O by Meredith Corporation. Meredith had entered broadcasting only 2 years before after buying WAGE (620 AM) & changing the calls to WHEN. It has always been a CBS affiliate, though @ first it also carried secondary affiliations with ABC & DuMont. When WSYR-TV (now WSTM-TV) signed on 2 months later, WHEN only had ABC as a secondary until WNYS-TV (later WIXT & now WSYR-TV) signed on in 1962. WHEN's affiliation with DuMont ended in 1956, when that network ceased operations. In July 1961, WHEN moved to ch. 5, swapping channel locations with WROC-TV in Rochester.

In 1976, Meredith sold the WHEN stations to Park Communications, but kept WHEN-TV. It had to change the TV station's calls. It originally wanted the new call letters WTVF (for TV Five, the station's on-air identity), but those went to the former WLAC-TV in Nashville, Tennessee. At this point, Meredith chose WTVH as the new calls, the H being a link to it's WHEN heritage.

In June 1993, Meredith announced the sale of WTVH & sister station KSEE-TV in Fresno, California to Granite Broadcasting with the sale closing on December 23 of that year. With that deal, WTVH became Granite's oldest TV station, based on the date & time the station began it's broadcasting operation. Granite would soon increase it's northeast holdings with their purchase of WKBW-TV in Buffalo in 1995 & purchased WBNG-TV in Binghamton in July 2006.

As part of the WBNG purchase, Les Vann (formerly President & GM) was promoted to Executive VP of Central & Southern NY Operations with regional responsibilities over both WBNG & WTVH. At the same time, Matthew Rosenfeld was promoted to VP/Station Manager after holding the General Sales Manager position since 2004.

WTVH was featured in the film Bruce Almighty in 2003. WTVH is portrayed as the rival station of WKBW-TV in Buffalo, mainly because the common ownership of both stations made gaining rights to use both stations easier. It's also said that WKBW's real-life rival, WIVB-TV, refused to allow their branding to be used in the film, resulting in WTVH being substituted.

In April 2008, Matthew A. Rosenfeld was appointed to the position of President & GM of WTVH & it's Binghamton sister stations, WBNG - CBS 12 & WBXI - CW 11.

On December 22 2006, Nancy Duffy, a General Assignment Reporter for WSYR-TV died. The reporter had been away from work since August. Throughout her career, Nancy led the way for women in journalism. She became the 1st woman police reporter in Central New York after joining the Syracuse Herald-Journal in 1966. She was Syracuse's 1st TV female reporter when she moved to WHEN-TV (now WTVH-TV) in 1967. She became the 1st woman to join the Syracuse Press Club & later served as it's president. In 1970, Nancy served as press secretary @ Syracuse City Hall. She returned to Ch. 5 after a year & moved to NewsChannel 9 as a reporter & morning anchor in 1977.

On April 6 2008, Jean Daugherty died @ age 84. Daugherty was known to many Baby Boomer children as The Play Lady on the station's locally produced children's program, "The Magic Toy Shop", from 1955-1982. She wrote more than 6,000 episodes of the program, which, when it ended it's run, was the longest running local children's show in the country.

Utica MarketEdit

Since it's inception, WHEN-TV/WTVH has also served as the CBS affiliate for the majority of the Utica TV market (namely Herkimer & that market's portion of Oneida counties; Otsego County has WBNG as it's default). In past years, WTVH was extremely protective of this status having barred WUTR from affiliating with CBS on @ least 1 occasion. Under Granite's ownership, this status has not necessarily been taken advantage of in terms of advertising & targeting the station towards the Utica market as well.



  • CBS 5 News This Morning (5-7 AM)
  • CBS 5 News @ Noon (12-12:30 PM)
  • CBS 5 News @ 5 (5-5:30 PM)
  • CBS 5 News @ 5:30 (5:30-6 PM)
  • CBS 5 News @ 6 (6-6:30 PM)
  • CBS 5 News @ 11 (11-11:35 PM)

Morning FormatEdit

  • CBS 5 News This Morning delivers 5 minutes of news, weather & sports @ the top & bottom of both hours of the show (5, 5:30, 6 & 6:30 AM) called Five on 5.
  • CBS 5 News This Morning doesn't use the traditional anchor desk. It's filmed using virtual studio.


  • CBS 5 News @ 6 (6-6:30 PM)
  • CBS 5 News @ 11 (11-11:35 PM)

NFL controversyEdit

In 1997, CBS gained the rights to the AFC of the NFL. The league determined that portions of Yates County, New York, a fairly narrow county only a few miles wide @ certain points, was both within 75 miles of Ralph Wilson Stadium, home of the Buffalo Bills & in the Syracuse TV market (it has bounced between the Syracuse & Rochester markets a couple of times). Therefore, WTVH is forced to black out Bills games if they do not sell out. With WTVH's control over the Utica market, unless the Bills are hosting an NFC team or the game is a Sunday or Monday night game, the game would be blacked out there as well.

This was not the case when NBC held the rights to AFC games; WSTM was allowed to broadcast Bills games even when they didn't sell out. However, the NFL & Bills apparently had not checked the regional television market boundaries for a number of years before the switch from NBC to CBS.

Games @ the Rogers Centre would not be subject to blackout in Syracuse, as no part of the market is within 75 miles of Toronto, Ontario.

The CBS 5 News TeamEdit


  • Donna Adamo (5, 6 & 11 PM anchor)
  • Michael Benny (5:30 & 6 PM anchor/Executive Producer)
  • Keith Kobland (This Morning 5-7 AM & Noon anchor)
  • Chuck Plumpton (Weekend 6 & 11 PM anchor/Weekday Reporter)


  • Jon Dougherty (Multi-Media Journalist)
  • Haley Hinds (Multi-Media Journalist)
  • Angelique Piccolo (Multi-Media Journalist)
  • Joe Roetz (Multi-Media Journalist)
  • Catherine Hawley (Multi-Media Journalist)
  • Megan Eaton (Multi-Media Journalist)
  • Jason Douglas (Multi-Media Journalist)


  • John DiPasquale (Meteorologist; This Morning 5-7 AM & Noon)
  • John Gerard (Weather Anchor; Weekends 6 & 11 PM/Weekday Multi-Media Journalist)
  • Tom Hauf (Chief Meteorologist @ 5, 5:30, 6 & 11 PM)


  • Rishi Barran (Sports Reporter; Weekends @ 6 & 11 PM)
  • Kevin Maher (Sports Director @ 5, 5:30, 6 & 11 PM)

Former PersonalitiesEdit

  • Liz Ayers, now of WCNY-TV (1986-2006)
  • Joe Bartosik, now of WeatherBug (2001-2005)
  • Mark Cooper (?-?)
  • Ron Curtis, deceased 2001 (1959-1999)
  • Susan Davies, now of KOAA-TV
  • Tracy Davidson, now of WCAU-TV (?-1996)
  • Kristin Donnelly, now of WGRZ-TV (2004-2007)
  • Thomas Esterguard, currently unemployed although he continues fill-in work as a meteorologist (2006-2008)
  • John Eves, now owner of WXHC radio (?-?)
  • John Fisher (?-?)
  • Steve Flamisch, now of WRGB-TV (2006-2008)
  • Maureen Green (1983-2007)
  • Jamie Guirola, now of WKMG-TV (2002-2004)
  • Bob Kirk, now works for Entercom radio stations in Rochester, NY doing morning newsbreaks
  • Frank Kracher, left station due to TBI (2005-2007)
  • Carrie Lazarus, now of WSYR-TV
  • Lyra Manning, now of WBTW-TV (?-?)
  • Matt Mulcahy, now of WSTM-TV/WSTQ-LP (1997-2005)
  • Kathy Orr, now of KYW-TV (?-1998)
  • Janelle Reichert, now of KREM-TV (2005-2007)
  • Larry Sparano, now of WICZ-TV (?-?)

Notable AlumniEdit

  • Al Roker, weather & feature reporter for NBC's The Today Show, was weekend weatherman @ the station from 1974-1976, while attending the State University of New York @ Oswego.
  • Mike Tirico, ESPN & ABC Sports play-by-play announcer; ESPN Monday Night Football play-by-play announcer starting in 2006. Was the sports director @ WTVH in the late 1980s.
  • David Muir, now @ ABC News, anchored @ the station in the mid-late 1990s.
  • Steve Cyphers, reporter @ ESPN, was Sports Director in the late 1980s.

External linksEdit