WBBH-TV is the NBC-affiliated television station for Southwest Florida licensed to Fort Myers. It broadcasts a high definition digital signal on UHF channel 15 from a transmitter in Southeastern Punta Gorda along SR 31. Owned by the Waterman Broadcasting Corporation, WBBH operates ABC affiliate WZVN-TV (owned by Montclair Communications, Inc.) through a local marketing agreement (LMA). The two share studios on Central Avenue in Fort Myers. Syndicated programming on WBBH includes: Wheel of Fortune, Jeopardy!, The Dr. Oz Show, and Ellen.

Wbbh tv 2007.png
Fort Myers/Cape Coral/

Naples/Punta Gorda, Florida

City of license Fort Myers
Branding NBC 2 (general)

NBC 2 News

Slogan Count on NBC 2 First
Channels Digital: 15 (UHF)
Subchannels 20.1 NBC

20.2 local news and weather

Owner Waterman Broadcasting Corporation
First air date December 18, 1968
Call letters' meaning We're the Best ofBroadcasting History
Sister station(s) WZVN-TV, WVIR-TV
Former channel number(s) 20 (UHF analog, 1968-2009)
Former affiliations ABC (secondary, 1968-1974)

NBC Weather Plus (on DT2, 2006-2008)

Transmitter power 1,000 kW
Height 453.9 m
Facility ID 71085
Transmitter coordinates 26°49′31″N81°45′54.3″W

Digital programming

On WBBH-DT2 and Comcast digital channel 216 is a 24-hour local news and weather channel.

Subchannel Programming
20.1 main WBBH programming/NBC (HD)
20.2 WBBH-DT2 "NBC 2 News Now" (SD)


It signed-on as the area's NBC affiliate on December 18, 1968. As the second television station in Southwest Florida after CBS affiliateWINK-TV, WBBH shared ABC with that channel until WEVU launched on August 21, 1974. Started by local businessmen, the station originally used a 1,000 foot tower in Lehigh Acres which increased to 1,500 feet in 1983. It aired an analog signal on UHF channel 20. Waterman Broadcasting purchased the station in 1978 and the -TV suffix was removed from the call letters on October 16 of that year (this was later bought back).

In 1994, WEVU entered into a local marketing agreement with WBBH and moved into this station's facilities. At that time, both began identifying by the cable channel slots. The two began offering high definition signals on October 31, 2002 becoming the first stations in themarket to offer network programming in HD (WZVN upgraded four hours after WBBH). This channel began offering NBC Weather Plus on a new second digital subchannel in September 2006. In December 2008 after the national service folded, WBBH-DT2 switched formats and became a 24-hour local news and weather channel known as "NBC 2 News Now". On February 17, 2009 at noon, the station went all-digital.

News operation

Traditionally, WBBH tends to cover more from Charlotte County while WZVN has a slight Collier County focus since it is licensed to Naples. Compared with WBBH, WZVN's newscasts air in a flashier fast-paced format with on-air promotions referring to more coverage in thirty minutes especially on weeknights. On weekends, there are separate news and sports anchors but the meteorologists are seen on both WBBH and WZVN. This is possible because the two still maintain separate sets and do not always air local news at the same time. Since it was the first station in Southwest Florida and the only outlet on VHF, WINK-TV has long been the most watched channel according to Neilson ratings. Between the two, WBBH and WZVN air twelve hours of news on weekdays and four and a half on weekends.

Weeknight news open at 5.

In 1994, WBBH and WZVN began a partnership where news reporters would appear on both stations. Resources such as video footage and coverage was also shared. Each station maintained separate unique sets at the Central Avenue facilities and featured a distinct on-air style. There were primary personalities such as anchors that would only appear on one channel. The combined forces of the two stations was billed as the Eyewitness News Network. It should be known that if WZVN chose not become a junior partner in the local marketing agreement, the station would have been required to shut down its news department. The same arrangement continues today except WZVN has fewer personalities that only appear on that station. Otherwise, all on-air personnel is shared.

Its best known former personality is Harry Horn who was also a veteran of WZVN and WINK-TV. He lost his battle with ALS in August 2005. During major hurricanes, most recentlyCharley and Wilma, the news team of WBBH and WZVN put on 24-hour continuous coverage. Commercial breaks are dropped for several hours preceding and following landfall. There is a simulcast on both stations and a common live video stream is presented on both websites. During previous years, WBBH's news set was used along with both channel's weather sets. As of the 2007 season, WZVN's news set will be used in the event of a hurricane as its studio provides the best protection against damaging winds.

In March 2007, WBBH's website began offering live streaming video of its weekday noon and 4 p.m. newscasts. Today, morning newscasts are also streamed. In June, it added local news segments to its NBC Weather Plus subchannel now called "NBC 2 News Now". In early-February 2008 following the lead of WZVN, WBBH transitioned its newscasts to 16:9enhanced definition widescreen. Although not truly high definition like WINK-TV (which upgraded on October 20, 2007), this matched the aspect ratio of HD television screens. On July 19, the two started airing local news full in high definition becoming the second and third stations respectively in Fort Myers to do so (WZVN upgraded five hours after WBBH).

On October 26, 2008, several changes occurred on the two stations in order to better compete with dominant WINK-TV. WZVN dropped the first hour of its weekday morning show and mid-morning newscast at 10. WBBH debuted a new hour-long midday show at 11 while keeping its hour-long noon broadcast. Meanwhile, WZVN added an hour-long newscast weekday mornings at 9 to piggyback off Good Morning America. This is currently the only local newscast in the time slot. On September 8, 2009, WZVN starting offering a prime time newscast on weeknights known as The 7 O'Clock News to go up against WINK-TV's show airing at the same time. In addition to the main studios, WBBH and WZVN operate a Collier County Bureau on Tamiami Trail North (U.S. 41/SR 45) in Naples. The two stations operate a Baron weather radar at the main facilities that is known on WBBH as "NBC 2 First Alert Power Doppler HD". The radar has a range of 300 miles and can survey approaching storms in three dimensions.

Newscast titles

  • The Sixth Hour Report/The Eleventh Hour Report (1968-1974)
  • First Edition News (1974-1977)
  • TV-20 Eyewitness News (1970s–1994)
  • News 2 (1994–1998)
  • NBC 2 News (1998–present)

Station slogans

  • "20, Proud As A Peacock!" (1979–1981, localized version of NBC ad campaign)
  • "The Eyewitness News Advantage" (1982-1987)
  • "Southwest Florida's NewsChannel" (1988–1996)
  • "Coverage You Can Count On" (1996–1997)
  • "Count On Us!" (1997–2007)
  • "Count On Us in High Definition" (2007–2009)
  • "Count On NBC-2 First" (2009–present)

News team


  • Kellie Burns - weeknights at 5, 5:30, and 6
  • Stacey Deffenbaugh - weekdays at noon and justice correspondent
  • Lindsay Logue - weekdays at 4 and weeknights at 11 p.m.
  • Peter Busch- weeknights at 5, 5:30, 6 and 11 p.m.
  • Krista Fogelsong- weekdays at 4 p.m.
  • Clay Miller - weekday mornings (5-7 a.m.) and weekdays at noon
  • Heather Turco - weekday mornings (4:30-7a.m.) and 11 a.m.
  • Kelly Creswell- weekend mornings and reporter 3 days a week
  • TBD-weekend evenings

NBC 2 First Alert Storm Team

  • Jeremy Eisenzopf (CBM Seal of Approval) - fill-in
  • Jason Dunning- weekend mornings
  • Jim Reif (AMS Seal of Approval) - weekdays at 11 a.m., noon & 4p.m.
  • Haley Webb - Chief seen weekday mornings
  • Robert Van Winkle- Senior chief meteorologist seen weeknights at 5, 5:30, 6, and 11 p.m.
  • Kira Miner - weekend evenings


  • Rishi Barran - weekend evenings and sports reporter
  • Brian Colleran - Director seen weeknights at 6 and 11pm
  • Mark Laricos - sports reporter


  • Elizabeth Billingsley
  • Alex Boyer - Cape Coral
  • Linh Bui - health
  • Kelly Creswell
  • Derek Dellinger
  • Travell Eiland - investigative
  • Paul Gessler
  • Sarah Hollenbeck
  • Katie Johnson
  • Stephanie Kolp
  • Sara Miles
  • Chad Oliver - "One Tank Trips" segment producer
  • Jason Pawloski - weekday morning traffic
  • Andy Pierrotti - investigative
  • Karla Rae - Collier County Bureau
  • Joe Roetz
  • Meaghan Smith
  • Saundra Weathers - Charlotte County

Notable former personnel

*Anne Imanuel- Reporter 2008-2010 (now at WTXL)[4]

  • Mike Mason - Investigative Reporter
  • Elizabeth Tardy-morning anchor
  • Laura Arroyo
  • Bob Austin - anchor
  • Chere Avery (now VP Communications for Qualcomm in San Diego)
  • Leslie Bohl - anchor
  • Grant Boxleitner-Charlotte County Reporter (now at SNN 6)and Adjunct professor at lee campus of Edison state college (2006–2009)
  • Trent Butler - morning anchor went to WAGT (now at WHNS) (1995–2006)
  • Jonathan Carlson - reporter (left for KTXL-TV in Sacramento, Now at WSPA-TV in South Carolina[5])
  • Jim Clarke - meteorologist (now at sister station WZVN-TV)
  • Meghan Danahey - meteorologist (left for WFAA-TV in Dallas; now at KVUE-TV in Austin, Texas[6])
  • Josh Davidsburg - transportation reporter
  • Jorma Duran - reporter (2003–2007) (now at The Weather Channel[7])
  • Jim Farrell - chief forecaster (now at WINK-TV[8])
  • Hunter Finnell - sports
  • Patrick Flanary- reporter (2005–2008) Moved with his wife to Tampa.
  • Adam Freeman - Collier County Bureau (2007–2010) now at WTSP-TV in Tampa.
  • Richard Frohlich - weekend anchor (last station was WFTV-TV in Orlando, now deceased)[9]
  • Marlene Galan - anchor (last seen in Phoenix, now retired and married to former Arizona Attorney General Grant Woods[10])
  • Bob Goldberger - anchor (last seen at KNTV-TV[11])
  • Sharon Gregory - anchor (was moved to anchor on sister station WZVN, now at WVIR-TV[12])
  • Sloane Heffernan - reporter and weekend anchor (now at WRAL-TV[13]) (2001–2006)
  • Beth Hobbs - anchor (now elementary teacher in Fort Myers)
  • Harry Horn - anchor (now deceased[14])
  • Ryan Hughes (now at WFTV)
  • Tom James - sports anchor
  • Eileen Javora - meteorologist (now at KCRA[15])
  • Phil Jean - weekend sports anchor (now at WCTV-TV[16])
  • Todd Jurkowski - reporter (moved to WKMG-TV, Currently Press Secretary for Rep. Alan Grayson (D)-FL)
  • Mary Johnson (deceased)
  • Cara Jones - reporter (retired, now running video business[17])
  • Cara Sapida - reporter (now at WPXI-TV[18])
  • Glenn Jones - weekend anchor/ reporter
  • Jason Kadah - weather (now at KREM-TV in Spokane, WA[19])
  • David Karsh - reporter (now at FOX News Radio Miami affiliate WIOD)
  • Gene Lavanchy - (now at WFXT[20])
  • Bill Minton - reporter (now an attorney)
  • Chris Naille - Meteorologist (Now at WJLA-TV; NewsChannel8 WTOP Washington, DC)
  • Maggie Newland - investigative reporter (now at KSTP-TV[21])
  • Amy Oshier - reporter
  • Melissa Painter - anchor/reporter (now at WGHP[22])
  • Danielle Pepe - reporter
  • Mike Potter - forecaster (now at WCJB-TV[23])
  • Noah Pransky- Reporter 2005-2009 (now at WTSP[24])
  • Tom Rector - senior meteorologist (1980–2006)(now retired[25])
  • Jessica Ritter
  • Andrew Resnik - reporter, Fired from KUSA-TV After drug arrest.
  • Jay Severson
  • Dan Sheldon - sports anchor (now at KUTV)
  • G. Stuart Smith [1]now at Hofstra University
  • Shepard Smith - weekend anchor (now at FOX News Channel)
  • Chad Sokol
  • Beverly Stevens - anchor
  • David Sutta - crime reporter (now at WFOR-TV) (2003–2007)
  • Jessica Stillwell- Resigned after husband convicted on real estate fraud (1995–2009)
  • Jim Syoen - forecaster - (now at WFTX) (1995–2007)
  • Brandon Todd - reporter (now at KDFW)
  • Stephanie Tsoflias
  • Ukee Washington - sports anchor (now at KYW-TV)
  • Stephanie Watson - morning anchor (now at KDKA-TV) (2003–2006)
  • Warren Wright
  • Leisa Zigman - weekend anchor (now at KSDK)
  • Dan Haggerty - weekday reporter (now at WEWS)
  • Max Turnier - reporter (now at WINK-TV)
  • Jillian Windham - weeknight traffic
  • Jeff Yastine - reporter (now at PBS' Nightly Business Report)
  • Eric Salna - meteorologist (early 1990s)
  • Rhonda Bently - weather (early 1990s)
  • Kevin Ozebeck - now at WSVN
  • Mark Greenblat - now at KHOU Houston
  • Blake Burman - now at WSVN Miami
  • TJ Winnick - now report ABC News
  • Craig Stevens - reporter (now anchor WSVN Miami)
  • John Muller - reporter (now morning anchor WPIX New York)

External links