13abc's Stan Stachak announces retirement - 13abc.com Toledo (OH) News, Weather and Sports

13abc's Stan Stachak announces retirement

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TOLEDO, Ohio -

After a spectacular 30-plus career forecasting Toledo weather, 13abc Chief Meteorologist Stan Stachak has announced he will step down from full time responsibilities, effective April 23, 2012.  13abc President and General Manager John Christianson has appointed veteran 13abc meteorologist Jay Berschback as Stachak's successor.

Stachak's television weather forecasting career began in 1978 in Colorado.  He returned to Toledo in 1980 and joined 13abc's staff as Chief Meteorologist.  He also worked as a fill in meteorologist for CNN in the 1990's.  Stachak oversaw many technological advances during his tenure including the addition of Toledo's only Doppler radar in 2003. 

Stachak won praise from the Toledo Blade for his coverage of the November 2002 tornado outbreak in Northwest Ohio.  WTVG provided five and a half hours of continuous storm coverage and the Blade reported that Stachak and "WTVG smoked the competition, big time."  The station received dozens of thank you messages from viewers and many credited Stachak with saving lives. 

Stachak also led 13abc's coverage of massive flooding in Toledo and Findlay in June 2008.  Stachak has also worked tirelessly to provide comprehensive coverage of countless snow storms and severe weather outbreaks during more than three decades on the air in Toledo. 

The 13abc weather department has been honored repeatedly through the years for coverage and accuracy.

13abc and SJL Broadcasting Executive News Director Brian Trauring said that "Stachak is a professional who cares deeply about the safety of viewers during severe weather situations.  The goal is to continue to build on the proud tradition of coverage that Stan has built at the station."

13abc meteorologist Jay Berschback will succeed Stachak as Chief Meteorologist.  Berschback has been a broadcast meteorologist for nearly 20 years including the past 14 in Toledo.  Berschback is a native of Michigan and a graduate of the University of Michigan's College of Engineering.  He earned a degree in atmospheric, oceanic and space sciences.  Jay holds seals of approval from the National Weather Association and the American Meteorological Society and he continues to receive ongoing training as part of his membership in those organizations. 

Jay has been a key part of the success of 13abc's top rated morning newscast.  He also has been an integral part of major weather coverage by teaming with the other three members of 13abc's First Warning Storm Team on continuous coverage.  Viewers have commented that they respect Jay's ability to help keep them safe while remaining focused on the health risks posed to people and animals by heat waves and other unusual weather events.  "We are thrilled to have such an experienced and personable meteorologist already on staff that is able to succeed Stan Stachak.  These are big shoes to fill but Jay is the perfect person to join Diane, Lee and Dave on the evening broadcasts and lead our weather coverage."

13abc Meteorologist Bill Spencer will replace Berschback on 13abc Action News Good Morning effective April 23, 2012.  Spencer is a 32 year veteran of broadcast meteorology spending the last 15 years in Toledo.  Spencer was Chief Meteorologist at WNWO in Toledo for eleven years before joining 13abc in 2008.  He won an Emmy award and critical acclaim for his coverage of the June 2010 killer tornadoes.  Viewers wrote to thank Spencer for his many updates and warnings calling his performance a "terrific" and that "the forecast was right on" as the night of storms continued.

The man known as "Blizzard Bill" has unsurpassed passion for viewer safety and has spent many overnight hours on the job and presenting viewers with the latest information.  Spencer has worked in Topeka, Kansas and Traverse City, Michigan as well as Toledo.  He holds seals of approval from the American Meteorological Society and National Weather Association (NWA).  He has served on the broadcast board for NWA for several years. 

Spencer has been voted Toledo's best weathercaster repeatedly by readers of Toledo City Paper.  His forecasts are heard on radio stations in several states including K-100 and many of the Cumulus Broadcasting stations in Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan.  Trauring said that "having Bill working weekdays with Jay continues the tradition of excellence Stan started and continued for many years.  With their experience and the unsurpassed technology of Live Doppler 13000, viewers can go to one place and get all the information they need for weather."

A national search is under way to replace Spencer on weekends.  Berschback will shift to weeknights the week of April 23. Stachak will continue to be a member of 13abc's First Warning Storm Team through the end of May and will be asked to return to the station to forecast weather periodically.

13abc is Toledo's ABC affiliate and is owned and operated by SJL Broadcasting.

For additional information or interview opportunities, please contact Assistant News Director Anthony Knopps at 419-534-3879.

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