File this one under: Local Boy Makes Good.
Ben Bradley, who’s been a first-rate general assignment reporter and a rising star at WLS-Channel 7 since 2002, is about to be promoted to weekend news anchor at the top-rated ABC-owned station, sources said.
Bradley, 35, is expected to replace Kevin Roy as anchor of Channel 7’s Sunday morning newscasts. Roy was fired last April after he’d repeatedly failed to show up for work, citing “physical exhaustion.” The third time it happened — on April 25 — Bradley was called at home and summoned to fill in for the absent anchorman at the last minute.
Nothing has been confirmed yet, but if all goes as planned, Bradley would co-anchor Sunday mornings (from 6 to 7 a.m. and from 8 to 9:30 a.m.) alongside Stacey Baca, while still working as a reporter four days a week. Baca will continue to anchor Saturday mornings (from 6 to 7 a.m.) solo.
Bradley’s promotion would create a rare opening for a full-time general assignment reporter at Channel 7. Eric Horng, a Chicago-based correspondent for ABC News, is the leading candidate for that position, insiders said. Horng joined ABC in 2003 from CNN.
Before joining Channel 7 eight years ago, Bradley worked four years as a weekend anchor and general assignment reporter at CLTV, the Tribune Co.-owned news channel. A Chicago native, Bradley is a graduate of Homewood-Flossmoor High School and the University of Missouri-Columbia. He served as president of the Chicago Headline Club, the local chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.