Citadel Communications

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Citadel Communications Ltd.
IndustryBroadcast Television
Television Production
HeadquartersBronxville, New York
Area served
Flag of the United States.svg United States (Midwest, Northeast, and Southeast)
Key people
Philip J. Lombardo, Founder/CEO
Ray Cole, President/COO
Jeffrey Lombardo, Vice President
ProductsBroadcast television

Citadel Communications Ltd. is an American private broadcasting company. It is based in Bronxville, New York and owns 1 low-power television station on which it operates a regional 24-hour cable news channel. The company was founded in 1982 by former National Association of Broadcasters joint board chairman and current Broadcasters Foundation of America chairman Phil Lombardo.[1]

Upon completion of the Digital TV transition in 2009, Citadel's stations at that time returned their digital broadcasts to their former analog channel assignments in the VHF spectrum. As a result of poor propagation characteristics for digital TV in the VHF bands, these stations now operate low-power digital fill-in translators in the UHF band to improve coverage in their communities of license. See the digital TV section on the WHBF-TV entry for further information on the Citadel stations' post-transition digital signals.

In February 2009, Phil Lombardo became an investing partner in LDB Media, LLC., owners of the Suncoast News Network, a regional cable news channel in Sarasota, Florida.[2] In January 2014, Lombardo and Citadel purchased a majority interest in the company.[3] As a result, Citadel took over broadcast operations of SNN and integrated the channel with its other stations.

On September 16, 2013, Citadel announced that it would sell WOI-DT, KCAU-TV, and WHBF-TV to the Nexstar Broadcasting Group for $88 million. Nexstar immediately took over the stations' operations through a time brokerage agreement.[4] The deal followed Phil Lombardo's decision to "slow down," as well as a desire by Lynch Entertainment to divest its investments in WOI and WHBF. Citadel would continue to own KLKN, WLNE-TV, and its Sarasota properties.[5] On March 5, 2014, the Federal Communications Commission approved the sale of these stations to Nexstar outright and the deal was completed on March 13.

On May 16, 2019, it was announced that Standard Media, led by former Young Broadcasting and Media General executive Deb McDermott, would acquire Citadel's WLNE and KLKN for $83 million.[6] The sale was completed on September 5.[7][8]


Current Citadel property[edit]

City of license/Market Station Channel
Acquired Network affiliation
Sarasota, Florida WSNN-LD 1 /
Suncoast News Network
39 (39) 2011 and 2014[9] SNN
  • 1 Low-power; Sarasota is part of the Tampa/St. Petersburg television market. Also 24-hour regional cable news channel. Citadel purchased a majority interest in station owner LDB Media, LLC in 2014.[2]

Former Citadel-owned stations[edit]

City of license/Market Station Channel
Years owned Current ownership status
Rock Island, Illinois - Quad Cities WHBF-TV 4 (4) 1987–2014 CBS affiliate owned by Nexstar Media Group
Ames - Des Moines, Iowa WOI-DT 5 (5) 1994–2014 ABC affiliate owned by Nexstar Media Group
Sioux City, Iowa KCAU-TV 9 (9) 1985–2014 ABC affiliate owned by Nexstar Media Group
New Bedford, Massachusetts -
Providence, Rhode Island
WLNE-TV 6 (49) 2011–2019[10] ABC affiliate owned by Standard Media, LLC
Lincoln, Nebraska KLKN 8 (8) 1986–2019 ABC affiliate owned by Standard Media, LLC
Albion, Nebraska KLKE
(satellite of KLKN)
24 1996–2003 defunct, went silent in 2003
Binghamton, New York WMGC-TV 34 (34) 1986–1996 ABC affiliate, WIVT, owned by Nexstar Media Group
Buffalo, New York WUTV 29 (14) 1984–1990 Fox affiliate owned by Sinclair Broadcast Group
Burlington, Vermont - Plattsburgh, New York WVNY 22 (13) 1982–1996 ABC affiliate owned by Mission Broadcasting
(Operated under a SSA by Nexstar Media Group)


  1. ^ "NABEF Board of Directors: Philip J. Lombardo". National Association of Broadcasters Education Foundation. Retrieved 1 May 2011.
  2. ^ a b Hielscher, John (25 February 2009). "SNN set to return to the air Thursday". Sarasota Herald-Tribune. Retrieved 13 August 2014.
  3. ^ "Lombardo acquires majority stake in SNN". Sarasota Herald-Tribune. 1 January 2014. Retrieved 13 August 2014.
  4. ^ Malone, Michael (September 16, 2013). "Nexstar to Acquire Citadel's Iowa Stations for $88 Million". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved September 16, 2013.
  5. ^ Hicks, Lynn (September 16, 2013). "Nexstar buys WOI, other Citadel TV stations in Iowa". Des Moines Register. Archived from the original on September 16, 2013. Retrieved September 16, 2013. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  6. ^ "McDermott In The Station Game With WLNE, KLKN". TVNewsCheck. Retrieved 2019-05-16.
  7. ^ "Consummation Notice", CDBS Public Access, Federal Communications Commission, Retrieved 6 September 2019.
  8. ^ "Consummation Notice", CDBS Public Access, Federal Communications Commission, Retrieved 6 September 2019.
  9. ^ "MMTC spinning another donated low power television". Archived from the original on 15 July 2011. Retrieved 5 May 2011. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  10. ^ "Citadel Communications LLC, New Owner of WLNE-TV/ABC6". Retrieved 2 June 2011.

External links[edit]