Glenn Beck is beefing up the talent roster for his forthcoming web TV show.
The controversial conservative talk show personality and media mogul has tapped Amy Holmes, an alumnus of CNN (where she was a regular political contributor) and Talk Radio Network (where she co-hosted the nationally syndicated "America's Radio News"), as news anchor for the fledgling webcast operation GBTV. Beck launched the subscription Internet channel bearing his initials in June after he walked out of his final broadcast for the Fox News Channel.
"Amy is the perfect addition to the growing line-up of talent at GBTV," said Joel Cheatwood, the former Fox News executive who followed Beck to his new venture as president of programming, in a statement. "She combines an award-winning experienced pedigree with a fresh and unique approach to the news. We are excited about Amy becoming a key part of Glenn's new two hour show."
Holmes brings a recognizable face to GBTV's growing lineup, which so far includes the writers S.E. Cupp and Brian Sack, and correspondent Raj Nair. Aside from her contributions to CNN during the 2006 and 2008 political seasons, Holmes also has been a guest host on ABC's "The View" and Beck's earlier broadcast on HLN. His two-and-a-half-year run at Fox News ended June 30 following an acrimonious split with network brass.
Beck's production company, Mercury Radio Arts, will deploy Holmes on multiple media platforms. Holmes' segments will be branded under the banner of Beck's online news site, Blaze--and news stories she produces for GBTV may be sourced from reporting done by journalists working for Blaze.
"Being a part of the launch of a major new venture is thrilling--especially one powered by the tremendous energy, creativity, and positive entrepreneurial spirit of Glenn Beck," Holmes said in a statement. "The Blaze has assembled an impressive team of experienced editors and journalists who I look forward to working alongside to deliver thoughtful and compelling news coverage everyday on GBTV."
Analyzing the hire over at Business Insider, Glynnis MacNichol writes: "Holmes has certainly made a name for herself as a conservative analyst, but of the mainstream variety, which (further) suggests Beck is interested in stepping beyond the familiar and comfortable and giving the cable networks a real run for their money. She's also a woman and she's black, both of which are attributes sorely lacking in the cable television sphere."
Beck's plan is to build GBTV into a wide-ranging online television network, which will charge users $10 a month. His new daily show premieres on Sept. 12--a date that Beck has already branded aggressively, courtesy of the march on Washington he summoned in order to revive a post-Sept. 11 feeling of unity in the country.
"It seems like everything we have been doing at Mercury for the past few years has been leading to the launch of GBTV," he told The Cutline in June. "As I keep telling my staff, GBTV is a verb--we don't want couch potatoes, we want active engagement from our viewers and will provide them with shows that encourage just that."
Further hires are expected in the coming month, but a spokesman for Beck declined to comment.