UPDATE: Tammy Dombeck talks about life after Channel 5.
A couple of days ago, we linked to a report by TV blogger Ed Bark that Tammy Dombeck the popular, longtime morning traffic reporter on NBC 5 is not long for the station, and could be leaving as early as this week.
Dombeck confirmed the report this morning -- although she'll still be on the station for a few weeks.
"It's official," Dombeck said via a Facebook e-mail. "I'm leaving. Could not agree on contract terms. My last day willl be July 27th, but I'll be back, I guarantee you that."
The last part would seem to lend credence to the part of Bark's report on his Uncle Barky's Bytes blog that Dombeck, who has been with NBC 5 for 12 years, is already being courted by another station in the market.
The timing of Dombecks impending departure is strongly coincidental with Brendan Higgins first day on the job at rival KTVT/Channel 11. Higgins, who left NBC 5 more than two years ago under similar circumstances, made his CBS 11 debut Monday morning as part of an anchor team that includes new arrival Adrienne Bankert.
Dombeck and Higgins were on the same morning team for several years at NBC 5, but as Bark points out, standard non-compete clauses in broadcasters contracts make it unlikely that Dombeck could show up at another station inside of six months. Another former member of the NBC 5 team who worked with Dombeck, Rebecca Miller, currently does weather for KDAF/Channel 33 but is not part of the morning crew. (After Dombeck's departure, Deborah Ferguson will be the only remaining member of that old NBC 5 team; the station recently hired a new morning anchor, the energetic Mark Hayes, as Ferguson's latest co-anchor).
Spokespeople for WFAA/Channel 8 and at CBS 11 gave Bark standard no-comment lines. Dombeck has not yet responded to a DFW.com request for comment.
The least likely landing place for Dombeck (if she is indeed looking for someplace to land) is KDFW/Channel 4, which has been having a ratings tussle with NBC 5 for early-morning supremacy (once the other channels go national at 7 a.m., Fox 4s Good Day rules the next two hours in the local ratings). Good Day has more stability than any of the other morning shows, with Lauren Przybyl in the co-anchor slot for two years and the rest of the team in place longer.
Dombeck is a graduate of the University of North Texas who grew up in White Settlement and lives in the Fort Worth area. Here's a recent station promo featuring her.