WHAS-TV channel 11 is the ABC affiliated television station in Louisville, Kentucky. Owned by Belo Corporation, the station's transmitter is located in Floyd County, Indiana, near the community of Floyds Knobs. Syndicated programming on WHAS includes: Entertainment Tonight,Oprah, Kim Possible, and Live with Regis and Kelly.
|Branding||WHAS 11 (general)
WHAS 11 News (newscasts)
|Slogan||Coverage You Can Count On
(news) Start Here, Stay Here.(general)
|Channels||Digital: 11 (VHF)|
|Subchannels||11.1 ABC11.2 WHAS StormTeam Weather/The Local AccuWeather Channel11.3 Wazoo Sports|
|Affiliations||American Broadcasting Company|
(Belo Kentucky, Inc.)
|First air date||March 27, 1950|
|Call letters' meaning||
Sequentially assigned by the federal government to the AM sister station; unofficially means W Have A Signal
|Former channel number(s)||Analog:
9 (1950-1953) 11 (1953-2009) Digital: 55
|Former affiliations||Primary:CBS (1950-1990)Secondary:
|Transmitter power||16.4 kW (digital)|
|Height||392 m (digital)|
The station began broadcasting on March 27, 1950 on channel 9 as Kentucky's second television station. It moved to its current location of channel 11 on February 7, 1953, after an increase in effective radiated power caused interference with WCPO-TV, Cincinnati.
It was owned by the Bingham family, publishers of the The Courier-Journal newspaper, along with WHAS-AM, Kentucky's first radio station. Family patriarch Barry Bingham, Sr. handed over control to his son, Barry, Jr. in 1971. A 15-year family dispute culminated in a decision to split up the family's media holdings. WHAS-TV was sold to The Providence Journal Company in 1986, while WHAS-AM went to Clear Channel Communications and the Courier-Journal went to Gannett. The Journal Company merged with Belo in 1997.
In September 1990, WHAS-TV swapped affiliations with WLKY-TV and became an ABC affiliate. At the time of the exchange, ABC was the #1 rated network, with CBS a distant third in the midpoint of the Laurence Tisch era of the network's history. WLKY has since made strong strides in the market as cable penetration allowed WLKY's traditional UHF disadvantage to fade, and other factors allowed the station to strengthen its news operation and compete with WHAS's newscasts evenly. WHAS has seen some struggles over the years within seasons where ABC's schedule is weak, while WLKY's ties to CBS have boosted that station through most of the 2000s. With ABC's current schedule, both stations usually exchange top rankings in the news ratings race.
The station's digital signal is multiplexed:
|11.1||Main WHAS-TV / ABC programming|
|11.2||Accuweather / WHAS StormTeam Weather|
|11.3||Wazoo Sports (high school athletics)|
The station annually broadcasts the WHAS Crusade for Children, a highly successful local telethon benefiting children's charities throughout Kentucky and southern Indiana. It also originated one of the nation's longest-running public service programs, Moral Side of the News, featuring a local interfaith clergy panel discussing the week's events in the light of faith. The panel also administers the annual grants from the Crusade for Children telethon.
WHAS-TV originated the first television broadcast of the Kentucky Derby in 1952. When the Derby moved to ABC in 1975 (local affiliate WLKY), Churchill Downs included a provision in the contract requiring ABC to allow WHAS to continue showing the Derby. The provision became moot when WHAS joined ABC several years later. However, after the Triple Crown races moved to NBC in the 1990s, WHAS-TV lost the rights to WAVE, the local NBC affiliate, though in 2006 regained the rights to the Belmont Stakes which has moved back to ABC. WHAS also simulcast the 2006 Breeders' Cup from Churchill Downs that aired on ESPN.
In October 2009 WHAS launched the Wazoo Sports Network, a regional sports network devoted to high school and minor league athletics and sports from the University of Louisville andUniversity of Kentucky, over its 11.3 digital subchannel, along with Lexington's WLEX. The network had previously been online-only before launching its subchannel service.
Not surprisingly for a station with roots in a newspaper, WHAS-TV has been an innovator in news coverage. It was the first Kentucky station to use newsreel film.
In the late 1970s, WHAS-TV displaced long-dominant WAVE-TV and became the news ratings leader in Louisville. It held the lead through the early 21st century, often by a wide margin. While it still leads WAVE and WLKY in most time slots, its dominance is not nearly as absolute as it once was. In recent years, it has lost the 11 p.m. lead to WLKY. In the May 2006 ratings period, WHAS placed 4th at 11:00 behind Sex and the City re-runs on local Fox affiliate WDRB, but by May 2007 it had regained the runner-up spot behind WLKY. 
As a CBS affiliate in the 1970s until 1991, its newscasts were titled "Action 11 News." In 1991, its news branding was changed to "Kentuckiana's News Channel, WHAS-11." Most recently in the late 1990s, the station began using "WHAS 11 News" to brand its news product. Since 1991, WHAS has been using versions of Frank Gari's "Newschannel" music package.
On January 2, 2006, WHAS began producing a 10:00pm newscast on WBKI-TV. On Monday, August 24, 2009, WHAS became the second station (behind WAVE-TV) in Louisville to broadcast its local news in widescreen. Unlike WAVE (and eventually WDRB), the WHAS newscasts are actually aired in 16:9 widescreen standard definition. The WBKI broadcast is presented in standard definition 4:3 due to that station not having an HD master control facility.
- Focus: 1pm (1 p.m. newscast; 1960s-early 1970s)
- Channel 11 News Hour (5 p.m. newscast; 1960s-early 1970s)
- Focus: 11pm (11 p.m. newscast; 1960s-1971)
- TV-11 News (1971-1975)
- News 11 (1975-1977)
- Action 11 (1977-1983)
- Action 11 News (1983-1991)
- WHAS 11 News (1991-present)
- Kentuckiana's Number One News Broadcast (1978–1983)
- Action 11, We're Looking Good! (1979–1980; localized version of CBS slogan)
- Action 11 and You, You're Looking Good! (1980-1981; localized version of CBS slogan, "Looking Good Together")
- Reach for the Stars on Action 11 (1981–1982; localized version of CBS slogan)
- Hello, Louisville, 11 Loves You (1982–1985; during period station used Frank Gari's "Hello News")
- Stand Up and Tell them You're From Kentucky/Tell them Kentuckiana is Great! (1985–1989; during period station used Frank Gari's "Turn to News")
- Get Ready for Action 11 (1989-1990; localized version of CBS slogan "Get Ready for CBS")
- Louisville's Watching Action 11 (1990-1992; localized version of ABC ad campaign)
- Kentuckiana's 24-Hour News Channel (1991–1993)
- If It`s WHAS 11, It Must Be ABC (1992-1993; localized version of ABC slogan)
- Kentuckiana's NewsChannel (1993–1997)
- Coverage You Can Count On (1997–present)
- Start Here, Stay Here. (2008–present; localized version of ABC slogan)
Current on-air staffEdit
- Claudia Coffey - weekends at 6:30, 10 (on WBKI) and 11 p.m.
- Renee Murphy - weekdays at noon and 5:30 p.m.
- Rachel Platt - weekday mornings "Good Morning Kentuckiana" & Good Day
- Doug Proffitt - weeknights at 5, 5:30, 6, 10 (on WBKI) and 11 p.m.
- Kelsey Starks - weekday mornings "Good Morning Kentuckiana"
- Melissa Swan - weeknights at 5, 6 and 11 p.m.
- Andy Treinen - weekday mornings "Good Morning Kentuckiana"
First Alert StormTeam
- Monty Webb (AMS Member) - chief meteorologist; weeknights at 5, 5:30, 6, 10 (on WBKI) and 11 p.m.
- Kristin Wells- meteorologist; weekends at 6:30, 10 (on WBKI) and 11 p.m.
- Ben Pine (AMS Certified Broadcast Meteorologist and NWA Seals of Approval) - meteorologist; weekday mornings "Good Morning Kentuckiana" and Noon
- Reed Yadon - meteorologist; weekend mornings "Good Morning Kentuckiana"
- Kent Spencer - sports director; weekdays at 6, 10 (on WBKI) and 11 p.m.
- Adam Lefkoe - sports anchor; weekends at 6:30, 10 (on WBKI) and 11 p.m.
- Joe Arnold - general assignment reporter
- Mike Colombo - general assignment reporter
- Adrianna Hopkins - general assignment reporter
- Gene Kang - general assignment reporter
- Brooke Katz - general assignment reporter
- Anna Prendergast - general assignment reporter
- Adam Walser - general assignment reporter
Notable former staffEdit
- Mort Crim (later became anchor for KYW-TV Philadelphia and WDIV-TV Detroit, now runs Mort Crim Communications)
- Milton Metz - host
- Chuck Olmstead - 34 years on the job (died March 10th 2009 of a brain aneurysm)
- Hugh Smith (later became anchor for WTVT in Tampa, Florida; died December 16, 2007)
- Stacy Smith (now at KDKA-TV in Pittsburgh)
- Chuck Taylor (died of cancer in 1997)
- Kristen Cornett - Meteorologist (2001-2004) - (now at KMOV in St. Louis, MO)
- 1950-1986: Bingham family
- 1986-1997: Providence Journal Company
- 1997-present: Belo Corporation