Fast-rising TV personality Mackenzie Warren, terminated last week by KSNV-TV, Channel 3, won’t be able to return to local television until August 2015 under terms of her noncompete clause.
She was let go on Thursday without explanation in a move so sudden that Lisa Howfield, the NBC affiliate’s vice president and general manager, was seen weeping.
After joining the station in October 2011, Warren was on a fast track.
She spent five months in Carson City covering the 2013 Legislature.
Within two years of her arrival, the two-time NBC Nightly News intern was anchoring the 3 p.m. newscast.
“I’m shocked,” Warren, 25, said in an email to the Review-Journal.
“This is my hometown. No longer being allowed to do what I love will be a painful adjustment,” she said in the statement. “I thank this community for welcoming me into their homes over the years.”
Her three-year contract ends in August.
It was the latest in a series of personnel shockers at the station. Popular anchors Nina Radetich and Kendall Tenney were not renewed while Dan Ball and Sofia Choi made quick exits before their contracts expired.
PARTY AT N9NE
N9ne Steakhouse returned to its prerecession wall-to-wall party scene on Friday.
NFL Hall of Famers Joe Montana, Gale Sayers and Jonathan Ogden joined headliners and media personalities to celebrate N9ne’s new look.
It was a flashback to N9ne’s sizzling run as celebrity central from its 2001 opening to the crash that rocked Las Vegas.
Leading the celebration Friday was N9ne’s executive chef Barry Dakake, who worked a room that included former Palms owner George Maloof, former Sheriff Bill Young and former boxing champs Vinny Paz (formerly Pazienza) and Livingstone Bramble.
Illusionist Criss Angel was there with his repaired shoulder in a sling. At other tables: sports radio talk show host J.T. the Brick, James Beard Award-winning chef Saipin Chutima of Lotus of Siam fame, blues-rock guitarist Joe Bonamassa and prominent attorney Don Campbell.
Former Palms exec Jon Gray, now overseeing The Linq for Caesars Entertainment, told me the massive High Roller observatory wheel will soon be adorned with colored lights, making it one of the dominant landmarks on the Strip skyline.
Back in the kitchen at N9ne, looking quite out of place, was a six-pack of Orange Crush soda. It was given to Dakake courtesy of Matt Bolt, who is married to Mercedes Martinez of the DJ team Mark and Mercedes (KMXB-radio FM, 94.1).
It was a gentle reminder by Bolt that his Denver Broncos had crushed the Super Bowl hopes of Dakake’s favorite team, the New England Patriots, a week ago.
THE SCENE AND HEARD
All you need to know about Las Vegas Events President Pat Christenson’s laser-like focus while grappling with the National Finals Rodeo crisis: He joined the University of Wisconsin’s wrestling program as a freshman walk-on in 1973. No scholarship. In his senior season, he won the 167-pound NCAA title. ...
A month after being critically injured while crossing a street, Seven magazine food critic Max Jacobson continues to show small signs of responsiveness. Family rep Katy Conway said his CT scan results last week were favorable, with no change from the previous week. He is opening his eyes when asked, and he squeezes wife Setu’s hand every so often.
Khloe Kardashian, mobbed by a massive crowd during her appearance at Kardashian Khaos (Mirage) on Saturday. ... Shania Twain, taking in “Menopause the Musical” (Luxor) on Friday. ... Florence Henderson, touring Nevada Ballet Theatre’s studios on Thursday. She met with the dancers and staff, making her the NBT’s first “Woman of the Year” honoree to be hosted. ... Comedians David Spade and Kevin Farley, dining with friends at Lavo (Palazzo) on Friday.
THE PUNCH LINE
“(Justin) Bieber reportedly was driving 60 in a 30-mile-an-hour zone. He did admit to police that he drank alcohol, smoked pot and took prescription drugs that night. That may have just been his way of announcing he’s running for mayor of Toronto.” — Jimmy Kimmel
Norm Clarke’s column appears Sunday, Wednesday and Friday. He can be reached at 702-383-0244 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Find more online at www.normclarke.com. Follow Norm on Twitter @Norm_Clarke. “Norm Clarke’s Vegas,” airs Thursdays on the “Morning Blend” on KTNV-TV, Channel 13.