Long-time KOLD/KMSB news anchor Scott Kilbury has left the station and accepted a position as the main news anchor for WHEC TV in Rochester, New York.
While Kilbury considers Southern Arizona home, he has a great deal of familiarity with the Rochester area.
“Between the ages of 10 and 15, I lived in upstate New York,” Kilbury said. “When I went to Rochester it was so clean and nice. It’s beautiful, has a great downtown. They treated me well at the station. People like it there and have been there for a long time.”
Kilbury was at KOLD for a long time, over 12 years, and during that span he seemed to be the station’s go-to talent when it wanted to make a change or launch a new product. He left a successful stint on the sports desk to help stabilize otherwise transitional uncertainty in the station’s morning news block. While in sports, it was Kilbury who helped to launch the station’s well-known Overtime segments, the quirky skits that air as a lead-in to KOLD’s Friday night high school football coverage.
“We won two Emmys for those,” Kilbury recalled.
Once it lost Oprah Winfrey’s 4 p.m. talk show ratings juggernaut, KOLD wanted to expand its news presence with an hour-long newscast. It reached out to Kilbury, and asked him to act as co-anchor, which meant working double shifts—morning and afternoons—for a seven-month period.
And when Raycom, which owns KOLD, reached an agreement with Belo to produce the 9 p.m. news on KMSB TV 11, it was Kilbury the station approached to take the reins. The 9 p.m. newscast recently registered its best ratings numbers, with Kilbury at the helm.
Kilbury moved from upstate New York to Benson at the age of 15. He attended college locally and worked at the Arizona School for the Deaf and Blind for eight years—“I named my first child after one of the kids there”—before landing television gigs in Montana and Nebraska. He returned to the area when the KOLD opportunity presented itself in 2001.
“My family is here. My wife’s family is here. I would call Tucson home, but the irony is that from age 10-15 I lived in upstate New York,” Kilbury said. “I’m talking to the news director and he’s telling me my mom taught at the same middle school he went to in Utica. There are all these weird connections. For the kids this is the perfect fit. My oldest is looking forward to fishing and skiing, like I did, and not having to worry about burning his feet on the asphalt in the summer. But I’m going to really miss the great people in this community for all their love and support.”
Kilbury's first day on the air in Rochester is July 15.