Two promoted at ABC15

March 12, 2015 (Phoenix) — Chris Kline has been named news director at ABC15, where he will oversee all cross-platform story gathering. In his new position, Kline will lead the newsroom to distribute stories across both television and digital channels to better serve Arizona communities and meet changing audience habits.

Chris Kline

Chris Kline

For the past three years, Kline has served as director of new media at ABC15, managing the station’s growing digital strategy. He’s also served as an executive producer, web producer and reporter during his eight-year tenure at the station.

Before joining ABC15, Kline worked as a convergence journalist for the Arizona Republic and at CNN’s Crossfire in Washington, D.C. He’s also been an adjunct faculty member at Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism.

Kline, who is an Arizona native, received his Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism from The George Washington University in Washington, D.C. He moves into the news director role effective immediately.

Danielle Lerner

Danielle Lerner

In related news, Danielle Lerner has been promoted to co-anchor of ABC15 Mornings. She is an award-winning journalist who has been with ABC15 since the fall of 2014 as a weekend anchor and reporter.

“She has been anchoring on a temporary basis with the ABC15 Mornings crew for the past few months and the response to the team has been terrific,” said Anita Helt, vice-president and general manager at ABC15.

Lerner has studied and worked in five different states stretching from Washington, D.C., to California. Before joining ABC15, Lerner was most recently a morning anchor at KVOA-TV in Tucson. She also worked at KSBY-TV in San Luis Obispo, Calif.

Lerner grew up in Phoenix and is a graduate of Chaparral High School. She attended Saint Mary’s College in South Bend and received her Master’s Degree in Broadcast Journalism from Northwestern University Medill School of Journalism.

ABC15 Names Anita Helt Vice President and GM

Anita Helt, an accomplished television executive and community leader, has been
named vice president and general manager of KNXV, the Scripps-owned ABC
affiliate in Phoenix.

“Anita Helt is a long-time champion of the institutions of Phoenix, where she
spent 15 years working in local television and forging strong relationships
communitywide through her involvement in civic and professional organizations,”
said Brian Lawlor, senior vice president of the Scripps television division.
“With her keen market insights and industry leadership, Anita will develop local
news and programming that will continue to engage a growing numbers of viewers
and advertisers alike.”

Helt, 49, begins her new assignment on June 20. She replaces Janice Todd, who
retired earlier this year after leading the station since 2005.

Most recently, Helt, served as president and general manager of KXTV-TV, the ABC
station in Sacramento.

From 1995 to 2010, Helt worked for KPNX-TV, Phoenix’s NBC affiliate. She started
at the station as special projects manager, ultimately becoming vice president
of marketing and programming. In that capacity, she also led strategic planning,
community relations and digital efforts.

During Helt’s prior tenure in Phoenix, she served as president and as a board
member of the Carole Kneeland Project for Responsible Journalism. Helt also
served on the board of the Phoenix Susan G. Komen for the Cure; on the advisory
boards of Helping Hands for Single Moms and YWCA; and as president of a Phoenix
area chapter of National Charity League.

Helt’s early career highlights include serving as an anchor and reporter in
Kansas and Washington. Her work earned multiple reporting awards.  She earned a
bachelor’s degree in broadcast journalism from the University of Washington.

She and her husband, Kip, reside in Phoenix. The couple has a daughter, Lauren,
who attends Arizona State University’s Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass