Shakeup in management at City Montreal: Jeffrey Feldman out, Renato Zane in

Updated with comments from Feldman

Jeffrey Feldman, right, takes a picture of the Breakfast Television cast at a fall upfront event in June 2014.

Jeffrey Feldman, right, takes a picture of the Breakfast Television cast at a fall upfront event in June 2014.

A year after its founding executive producer, Bob Babinski, decided to quit to pursue freelance production work, City Montreal has parted ways with Breakfast Television’s supervising producer, Jeffrey Feldman.

Feldman, who worked as a Montreal producer for Bell Media’s eTalk and Fashion Television before joining City in 2013, is no longer with the company, a Rogers Media spokesperson confirmed.

Staff at City Montreal are tight-lipped about Feldman’s departure, referring me to corporate PR in Toronto.

UPDATE: I finally got in touch with Feldman himself. He insists his departure is amicable.

“It was just time to move on,” he said.

He’s considering moving back to his hometown of Toronto, where his family is, but is also considering an offer in Montreal. In the meantime, he’s taking his first real vacation in three years.

But Feldman says he enjoyed his time at City. “It was an amazing two years,” he said.

He said he turned off his Twitter account because he no longer needed it for work, and he didn’t think there was much there anyway.

As for why there was no on-air goodbye or social media well wishes from his colleagues, Feldman noted that he believes “producers’ jobs are supposed to be behind the camera” and he never wanted to draw attention to himself on air.

I guess that makes sense, but it’s still odd that no one has commented on his departure. Feldman mentioned that “I’ve always kept my professional relationships professional”, but that didn’t mean he wasn’t friends with the staff.

He also has only kind words for Renato Zane, the new executive producer (see below), calling him a great guy.

Renato Zane

Renato Zane

Zane, formerly director of news and current affairs at OMNI, has actually been working here for some time now. I met him (and took his photo) in April, and the decision for him to come here had been made, but Rogers wanted me not to reveal his new post until it was official. For some reason that took months.

Zane, who fills Babinski’s former job, admitted he’s new to Montreal, which is a stark contrast to most of the staff at the station, who have strong roots in this city. But he is eager to learn.

On Wednesday, Breakfast Television marked its second anniversary.

Antenna work

People watching City Montreal over the air have been noticing reception issues. Says Rogers: “We are currently in the process of returning the tower to our engineering standards, a long-term solution that will improve both the quality of our signal and its over-the-air reception by viewers; we hope to have these repairs completed very soon.”

City Montreal (CJNT-DT) broadcasts from a small tower next to the CBC Mount Royal antenna tower, which is undergoing its own maintenance this summer. Its lower height and 4kW power have made it more difficult to receive than other Montreal stations.

10 thoughts on “Shakeup in management at City Montreal: Jeffrey Feldman out, Renato Zane in

  1. ClearChannel

    Reception issues? They aren’t kidding, they have been off the air a couple of weeks and now that they are back they are on just barely, even the university channel 29 comes in better. What surprises me is that these troubles could be happening given that they are part of Rogers, you’d think they would be using a better antenna or running more power. 4000 watts is rather meager compared with WPTZ on Mount Mansfield which puts out 650,000 watts.

    Reply
    1. Dilbert

      You have to remember that the OTA presence isn’t about reception, it’s about fulfilling the requirements to get SimSub and all the incoime that comes from it. 4KW was probably the lowest they could come up with that would still give them enough coverage to claim this financial benefit.

      Reply
      1. Fagstein Post author

        4KW was probably the lowest they could come up with that would still give them enough coverage to claim this financial benefit.

        Actually, the technical setup for this station is just the same as it was for CJNT under Canwest and Channel Zero. And they inherited the station from CTEQ, the independent ethnic broadcaster, though it was originally licensed at 11kW.

        Reply
        1. Dilbert

          Yup, and there is absolutely ZERO incentive to move much past their current setup. When OTA mattered, they would have be working their tails off to get the full 11kW they are allowed by license. Now it’s just not important, just keeping a signal out there to get the simsub money is key!

          Reply
  2. Dilbert

    “No longer with the company”, when you are talking about one of the three or four media power houses in Canada, it a pretty big announcement. Decoded, it comes to one of two conclusions:

    1 – Employee wanted to leave, submitted resignation, and left.

    2 – Employee and company had a disagreement about job performance or direction of the project. They had enough disagreement that not only are they moving him out of this job, but in fact entirely out of the company. You would think that a company the size of Rogers would have somewhere else for him to land.

    My bet is on 2. The fact that he has left with no particular destination, and has entirely left the company makes it pretty clear he had reached a dead end. The abrupt killing of social media contact and such is another indication that the end of employment was sudden and perhaps more than a little brutal.

    New guy gets a short time to get the ship moving in the right direction before the next ratings come out.

    Reply
  3. Mark

    Well 4 kW output is just under 3 hairdryers so I dare say they need to step it up a little bit. Mount Royal is the highest physical landscape in the city so why not increase the output as a higher tower is still more costly than electricity.

    Reply
  4. Barry Thomas

    I watch TV over the air and all Canadian channels with the exception of 8 (analog from Ottawa) and 62.1 (City) went dark at 12:15. Is there somewhere that makes the info available about antenna maintenance?

    Reply
  5. Media Man

    Steve, was just browsing some older posts looking for updates, curious was there ever a replacement named for Jeff Feldman, or is Renato Zane running the whole show..?

    Are the segment producers Kelly Albert and Melanie Porco still there.?

    Reply
    1. Fagstein Post author

      curious was there ever a replacement named for Jeff Feldman, or is Renato Zane running the whole show..?

      No replacement was announced, and I doubt there will be.

      Are the segment producers Kelly Albert and Melanie Porco still there.?

      Unless you know something they don’t.

      Reply
  6. Pingback: Renato Zane leaves City Montreal | Fagstein

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