Pittsburgh native Kelly Rippin, a reporter at WXIX-TV five years ago, returns to Cincinnati in June to take Lisa Cooney's chair on the weekday News 5 Today anchor desk with Colin Mayfield and meteorologist Randi Rico.
Since Cooney retired after 30 years on April 5, weekend anchor Megan Mitchell has worked weekday mornings with Mayfield.
"Cincinnati: I've missed you so much, I'm coming back!" Rippin posted on Facebook Thursday. "This is the opportunity of a lifetime & I cannot wait to be back!"
The 2010 Penn State University graduate was hired from sister Hearst station WESH-TV in Orlando, where she has worked since January 2018, after a nationwide search.
"We couldn't be more excited to bring Kelly back to Cincinnati and the region she calls home," said Branden Frantz, WLWT-TV president and general manager, in the station announcement.
Her WESH-TV bio says that "Kelly hails from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and is a die-hard Pittsburgh sports fan."
Frantz says that her "professionalism, approachability and superb reporting experience covering major stories and events makes her the right candidate to join an already successful team. This, along with her love of the Tri-State and our beautiful community, makes this a win-win we feel our viewers will embrace."
Rippen a Fox 19 reporter from Aug. 2012 to Sept. 2014, then worked as an morning anchor/reporter at Nashville's WXTV-TV for three years.
She started her career as a reporter, weekend anchor and producer at WBOY-TV in Clarksburg, W. Va., in 2010. While studying at Penn State, she interned at NBC News, CBS News and Pittsburgh's WPXI-TV.
"When I first worked in Cincinnati, I quickly embraced the history, the culture and, of course, the food. But what I love the most are the people. There is a level of pride in each neighborhood, and a sense of community over the entire region that is hard to match," Rippin said in the WLWT-TV announcement.
Her Facebook post reads: "Cincinnati: I've missed you so much, I'm coming back! In June, I'm heading north to join the insanely talented team at WLWT. I am so grateful for my WESH 2 News family & how they've helped me grow in my time here. This is the opportunity of a lifetime & I cannot wait to be back! Sorry for the overload of personal news. I promise I'll go back to posting cute animals, Penny, and important news headlines soon!"
Here's a link to my April 24 post for May sweeps on local news changes, "Who's Who On TV News? Your Guide To TV's New Faces."