Friday, March 08, 2019

A Visit To The Media Beat: Calling All Tired Reporters; Guv Offers Hope, Plus: Popular TV News Anchor Marissa Maez Exits And Readers Have Questions  

Marisa Maez
Let's get over to the Media Beat this Friday and see what's brewing.

First off, reporters tired of the daily grind may have some hope for new careers now that there's a new Guv on the Fourth Floor who isn't shy about filling vacancies. Her communications director fired off a Tweet that no doubt garnered the attention of weary ink-stained wretches and tired TV types seeking a less stressful setting:

NM state government needs communications professionals! Still lots of departments! If you are interested or you know a talented writer/thinker who can work with the press and help facilitate transparent governance, DM (direct message) me!

When Big Bill took the helm in 2003 it seemed he took half the staff of the ABQ Journal with him into state PR jobs. For those who missed out then, it looks as though they have a second chance.


Fans of popular KOAT-TV morning anchorwoman Marisa Maez, who was also a presence on evening broadcasts, are asking us: "What happened?"

She abruptly announced her departure from the anchor chair Wednesday and will leave KOAT today after 16 years on the dawn patrol. She said in her statement that she wanted to spend more time with her family, but Paul Roybal asks:

Joe, it seems unusual that Marisa Maez announces her resignation to "spend more time with her family" on Wednesday with her final work day Friday without the usual fanfare given other anchors when they depart after long years of service. Inquiring minds want to know, suelta la sopa!

Good question, Paul. You said "suelta la sopa!" which translates to "tell me what you know." So:

Media observers can only speculate about what happened to Marissa, 43, a native New Mexican who has been with the station since 1999. Those observers point out that a new general manager took over KOAT in November, replacing Mary Lynn Roper who had advanced Marisa's career.

They think if there is more to the story you should "follow the money." Maez, an ABQ Manzano High School grad with a journalism degree from UNM, likely built up a big salary with her long tenure. TV stations continue to operate under pressure and with an ever present scalpel poised to cut costs. New managers bring a fresh look at budgets. They often do that by forcing the ouster of highly paid talent, replacing it with new lower paid talent. For now, it's adios Marisa. (P.S. Will Marisa end up working in one of those many open state government PR vacancies? Stay tuned.)


A couple of clarifications about the first draft of the Thursday blog.

First, the Energy Transition Act (ETA) passed by the Senate Wednesday night does not, as we said, now go the House "for concurrence." ABQ Dem Senator Mimi Stewart clarifies:

The Energy Transition Act has not yet passed the House, so instead of going to the House for concurrence, it’s now moving to the House for passage through committees and onto the House floor.

And in our report about UNM soccer we said the new UNM Regents conducted a meeting and that it appears reinstatement of the men's soccer program is not in the cards. We are now told that it was a meeting of a committee of Regents and that the next full UNM Regents meeting is scheduled for March 11th.

Keeping it on the men's soccer front, reader Gabe Gallegos offers this:

Joe, your piece about UNM soccer may not have all the context necessary. About a week ago, UNM went to the ABQ Journal with data that claims that UNM football actually turns a profit. This runs absolutely counter to UNM President Stokes' initial claims when she decided to cut soccer. A local attorney wrote a letter to the Regents imploring them to reinstate soccer while the actual data is calculated from UNM Athletics. It was in response to that letter that Regent Schwartz said that the decision to eliminate soccer should hold. But I don’t think we know if Rep. Lundstrom's measure to hold athletic funding up until UNM reinstates soccer will actually be killed. We will see.

Thanks, Gabe. Stokes and Rep. Lundstrom have been on a collision course all year. Did we count soccer out too early? The final act will soon tell the tale.


It is a great ski season in NM, not a common occurrence in recent years because of drought. Taos Ski Valley is one of the beneficiaries even as it struggles to overcome a tragic avalanche accident that killed two skiers. The NYT takes a look at the new and improved Taos.

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