By Charles Lam
Northwest Asian Weekly
Robert Mak left KING 5 TV on Friday, Nov. 30, after the cancellation of his long running political program, Up Front. Up Front ended its 11-year run on Sunday, Dec. 2 after cutbacks across the station that also saw the closing of seven positions.
Nine of those years were anchored by Mak, who has been with KING since 1992, save a two-year haitus starting in 2008 when he worked in the office of Mayor Greg Nickels. The show aired on KING-TV, KONG-TV, NWCN, and KREM 2 in Spokane. It had won 11 Northwest Emmy Awards and the national Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Broadcast TV Political Journalism three times.
KING Executive News Director Mark Ginther told the Seattle Times that the cancellation was not caused by declining ratings, but rather by slow advertising sales. He said that Mak was offered a position as KING 5’s chief political reporter. Mak declined.
“I appreciated the offer to stay,” Mak said. “After considering it seriously, I simply concluded [that] it’s a good time to start a new chapter. I have a number of ideas and interests that I want to pursue, most likely in the communications field, and I’m keeping an open mind.”
He will be staying in the Northwest area and characterized his departure from KING amicably.
“The one certain thing is that this is home, and I intend to stay in this community. The KING newsroom is filled with talented and wonderful people, and I thank KING-TV for making such a strong commitment to this community for so many years. Most of all, I’m forever thankful to the viewers who shared a half-hour of their valuable time with us every Sunday.” (end)
Charles Lam can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.