WJZ-TV’s Jessica Kartalija leaving for anchor spot at Philly CBS affiliate

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Photo via Jessica Kartalija/Facebook

Longtime Channel 13 reporter Jessica Kartalija is leaving Baltimore for a new evening news anchor spot at Philadelphia CBS affiliate KYW.

Kartalija, a general assignment reporter and anchor for WJZ-TV for the last 12 years, announced her departure today with a celebratory tweet and a warm farewell for her viewers and fans here.

In a video address, she tells of moving here in 2006 and trying out Baltimore things, like going to O’s and Ravens games and eating the signature local fare of crab cakes, as well as taking big life steps like buying a home in Canton and marrying her husband, Brian, who she met while interviewing him for a story.

“More than a decade later, I find myself leaving Baltimore, a place I now love with all my heart,” she wrote in an accompanying note posted to CBS Baltimore’s website.

She added later: “Yes, this means I will be having more cheesesteaks than crab cakes…but will be back in town often as we have friends and family here. That said–the thought of leaving my WJZ family and our viewers breaks my heart. You have welcomed me into your homes every afternoon and evening. You’ve trusted me to share all types of stories with you and your families–both positive and negative, and I am forever grateful. Thank you.”

A San Diego native, Kartalija is returning to Pennsylvania, where she earned her bachelor’s degree in broadcast journalism from Penn State University. Upon graduating, she went to work in Yuma, Arizona, and then Albuquerque, where she served as a reporter and anchor for the city’s NBC and Fox affiliates.

During her time here in Baltimore, she earned a master’s degree in communications from Hopkins.

Per the Philly Voice, she’s stepping into a co-anchor role left vacant by Jessica Dean, who left KYW for a role with CNN this year. The station also reportedly lost another anchor, Nicole Brewer, this past June.

Kartalija’s first day in Philly is next Monday, Oct. 29.

Ethan McLeod
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Ethan McLeod

Senior Editor at Baltimore Fishbowl
Ethan has been editing and reporting for Baltimore Fishbowl since fall of 2016. His previous stops include Fox 45, CQ Researcher and Connection Newspapers in Northern Virginia. His freelance writing has been featured in Baltimore City Paper, Leafly, DCist and BmoreArt, among other outlets. He enjoys basketball, humid Mid-Atlantic summers and story tips.
Ethan McLeod
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