Nexstar Announces Promotions in Peoria IL & Columbus GA


Nexstar has promoted two experienced broadcast leaders to Vice President and General Manager, overseeing the company’s broadcast and digital operations in Peoria, IL, and Columbus, GA.

Shaun Newell will lead WMBD-TV (CBS) in Peoria, IL (DMA #121), and will also oversee the Company’s operational agreements with Cunningham Broadcasting Corporation, providing services to WYZZ-TV (Fox) in Peoria.

Mr. Newell will report to Traci Wilkinson, Senior Vice President and Regional Manager for Nexstar Media’s broadcasting division. Joe McGuire will assume the leadership role at WRBL-TV (CBS) in Columbus, GA (DMA #131) and report to Julie Pruett, Senior Vice President and Regional Manager for Nexstar Media’s broadcasting division.

Both promotions are effective immediately. Collectively, Mr. Newell and Mr. McGuire have more than 30 years of broadcast leadership experience, and each is extremely familiar with Nexstar’s media operations and the respective market they will lead.

Mr. Newell has spent the bulk of his professional broadcast career in Peoria and Central Illinois, and has served as News Director for WMBD-TV/WYZZ-TV since 2017, responsible for the long-range strategy and day-to-day operations of the news department.

At WMBD, Mr. Newell has overseen a staff of 35 journalists delivering a total of eight hours of local news every weekday. During his tenure, he and his team launched a new weekday newscast at 4 p.m. and created the station’s first-ever digital news content department.

The efforts of the news team have been recognized with several awards for excellence, including the 2020/2021 Illinois News Broadcasters Association awards for Best Digital Presence and Best Weather Team.

In 2020, the WMBD-TV news team was honoured with an Edward R. Murrow Award for Diversity for its television special, “Together We Rise.”

Mr. Newell has been active in Peoria community organizations and deeply involved in the North Branch of the Peoria Rotary Club. He also serves on the board of several non-profit organizations, including The Center for the Prevention of Abuse and Dirksen Congressional Center.

Mr. Newell earned his Master’s degree in Business Administration from Bradley University in Peoria, and his undergraduate degree in Broadcasting from Western Illinois University in Macomb, IL.

Mr. McGuire has had a lengthy career in broadcast sales; since mid-2018, he has been the Director of Sales at WSAV-TV, the Nexstar television station serving Savannah, GA (DMA #90), where he oversaw all of the station’s sales operations.

Mr. McGuire has consistently demonstrated the ability to grow revenue and profitability by identifying new streams of revenue, cultivating new business, and developing a variety of innovative cross-platform solutions for advertisers and marketers.

At WSAV-TV, Mr. McGuire and his team grew broadcast and digital advertising substantially, driving increases in revenue from professional, college, and high school sports programming and partnerships with the NFL’s Jacksonville Jaguars and Clemson University’s athletic department.

The station also launched several new ad sponsorships with area businesses including Mercedes-Benz of Hilton Head and St. Joseph’s Chandler Hospital.

Prior to joining WSAV-TV, Mr. McGuire served as National Sales Manager and Local Sales Manager at WKRN-TV (ABC), the Nexstar television station serving Nashville, TN (DMA #30).

Mr. McGuire is a graduate of Middle Tennessee State University, where he earned his Bachelor’s degree in Media Management. He is a member of the Georgia Association of Broadcasters and is a supporter of the United Way of the Coastal Empire and the Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Coastal Empire. He is also active in a variety of church activities.

“Shaun and Joe represent the best of Nexstar and are outstanding leaders within the company’s management ranks,” said Andrew Alford, President of Nexstar Media’s broadcasting division.

“They have developed innovative and exclusive local content for viewers and digital users, and shown the ability to forge important community relationships. As the nation’s largest local broadcaster, we are fortunate to have a deep bench of talented, experienced executives, and it is gratifying to watch their continued advancement throughout the company. Identifying leaders and promoting from within is critical to our ongoing success. Shaun and Joe are proven leaders, and we look forward to celebrating the results of their continued accomplishments as they undertake their new roles within Nexstar.”