DES MOINES (June 17, 2022) – WHO 13 Des Moines, Iowa, today announced that it is adding Iowa-native and WHO 13 veteran, Elias Johnson, to its talented story-telling anchor team. Mr. Johnson will be returning home to WHO 13, were he worked earlier his career, winning regional and national Edward R. Murrow Awards for excellence in journalism at WHO 13, in addition to 4 additional career Emmy awards.
Mr. Johnson brings more than 14 years of broadcast experience, including eight in Des Moines, to his new role. Mr. Johnson will be part of a 4-person news team of talented anchors/story-tellers that collectively have more than 55 years of experience in the Des Moines market. This includes Erin Kiernan who is in her 18th year with WHO 13 and has more than 25 years in the market, Jannay Towne with 17 years at WHO 13, and newly promoted Justin Surrency, who was recently a part of a team of reporters that covered the 2020 Olympics and Super Bowl. This trusted group will be teamed with the experienced Ed Wilson, WHO 13’s Chief Meteorologist of 35 years, and Sports Director Keith Murphy, a 26-year veteran of WHO 13.
“We want to continue to grow our local content by bringing important stories and live reporting to Central Iowa,” said WHO 13 Vice President and General Manager Bobby Totsch. “This veteran group of journalists has called Des Moines home for decades, and they are very familiar to our viewers. By creating a 4-person evening “news team” rotation, we have more opportunities to expand our local content while also covering breaking news. That is exactly what viewers expect from the Des Moines local news leader.”
Whether it is over-the-air, streaming, or on our digital platforms, local content matters to WHO 13 viewers. The station will also be creating more opportunities for WHO 13’s experienced morning anchor team of Jodi Long and Andy Fales to tell stories or to report from the field. Trusted journalists focused on important local content, and a 5-person weather team with a combined 98 years of experience proves that WHO 13 is always “all in” when it comes to covering local news.
In addition to these changes in our afternoon and evening coverage, WHO 13 will be rotating two veteran meteorologists earlier in the day. Jeriann Ritter will make the move to a daytime/afternoon shift, allowing for Megan Salois to move into the morning news role. This change allows Ms. Salois the opportunity to lead our morning team coverage and enables Mrs. Ritter to headline the noon, 4 pm and, occasionally the 5pm news. This also creates opportunities for Mrs. Ritter to focus on important digital content and the ability to visit schools and perform other community outreach activities throughout the day.