By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

Jim Braude will succeed Emily Rooney at ‘Greater Boston’

Jim Braude. Photo by Tracy Powell/WGBH.

Jim Braude. Photo by Tracy Powell/WGBH.

Congratulations to Jim Braude, who has been named Emily Rooney’s successor as host of “Greater Boston” on WGBH-TV (Channel 2). Given that Braude already co-hosts “Boston Public Radio” with Margery Eagan on WGBH Radio (89.7 FM), the move makes a great deal of sense.

(Conflict alert: I am a paid panelist on Channel 2’s Friday “Beat the Press” and an unpaid contributor to And yes, Rooney will continue to host “Beat the Press.”)

I covered Braude as far back as the 1980s, when he was head of the liberal Tax Equity Alliance for Massachusetts and I was a reporter for the Daily Times Chronicle of Woburn. He and Barbara Anderson, who ran Citizens for Limited Taxation, often debated in public, even traveling together despite their different ideological viewpoints.

In 1996 I interviewed Braude when he was launching a liberal magazine called Otherwise and I was covering the media for The Boston Phoenix. The idea, he told me at the time, was motivated in part by complaints on the left that they were too often ignored by the mainstream.

“We’ve done so much bitching about media access for so long that my reaction is to just do it,” Braude said. “The environment is as ripe as it could be.”

Otherwise had a decent run, but as is generally the case with startup magazines, it eventually faded away. Braude hasn’t. His program on New England Cable News, “BroadSide,” which he’s leaving, has been a bastion of intelligence for years. His radio show with Eagan — the only listenable program on the late, unlamented WTKK — was so good that it brought both of them to WGBH.

The big question is how “Greater Boston” will change with Braude at the helm. “I love Emily,” he tells The Boston Globe’s Shirley Leung. “We are different people with different styles. Beyond that, stay tuned.”

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  1. Ric Mauré

    By my count, Mr. Braude will now be broadcasting on a WGBH concern in excess of 3 hours per weekday, not counting re-broadcasts. There are many choices in today’s news media. This is one of them.

  2. Not being a radio listener, I don’t “know” Braude, so I have no opinion on his appointment except to express my disappointment that Adam Reilly didn’t get the job (if he wanted it), He’s really matured into a first class anchor, and seemingly would have deserved the slot if that’s the way things worked in our industry…which they seldom do.

  3. Deb Mackey

    I, too, wish they’d given Adam Reilly the nod. I’m not a Braude fan–either on radio or broadcast TV–but I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt. Thank goodness “Beat the Press” continues with the current cast of quippy curmedgeons. Including you, Dan!

  4. Jeff Magidsongidson

    Braude is likeable but his radio show recently went from 2 hours a day to 3 hours a day, giving him a total of 15 hours of airtime a week. Now in addition he is going to be on Greater Boston 4 nights a week – talk about over exposure! Are there no other suitable voices for WGBH?

  5. Jim Braude is not a good choice. For one thing, he is not a journalist like Adam Reilly, he is a talk show host. He is also “old” in media terms, having been on radio for a long time. His gig on WGBH radio plus this new assignment will expose his weaknesses and facile manner. Not a good choice.

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