WDIV-TV (Detroit) and Graham Media Group has announced the retirement of Marla Drutz, Vice President and General Manager of the station, after more than 13 years of distinguished service, effective in the upcoming months once a replacement is hired and transitioned into the job. Drutz is a broadcast industry legend with more than 35 years experience with most of those years in the Detroit DMA.
“Marla is a dynamic local broadcaster who loves, eats, and breathes everything about serving a local market. She consistently demonstrates a keen ability to cultivate new business, strengthen our service to the metro Detroit community, create engaging news and local programming and increase revenue while leading a management team dedicated to growing ratings and upholding the highest standards of journalistic integrity,” said Emily Barr, President and CEO of Graham Media Group, WDIV-Local 4’s parent company. “She has been a confidant to me and I’m thankful for the years she has led this legacy station.”
Drutz has held the position of Vice President and General Manager since July 2008. Under her leadership, WDIV-Local 4 has been dominant both on-air and online. The station has several of the top-rated/most watched newscasts in the market. On the digital side, ClickOnDetroit is consistently Metro Detroit’s No. 1 news website. Drutz has also bolstered a strong commitment to outstanding community service.
In addition, the Local 4 News team has been presented with 18 prestigious Edward R. Murrow Awards from the Radio Television Digital News Association for news coverage since her tenure, and WDIV has been named Station of the Year seven times by the Michigan Association of Broadcasters. The station’s website, ClickOnDetroit.com, received numerous Local Media Association Awards.
“I am grateful to have spent nearly four decades doing what I love and I’m eternally grateful for the last 13 years at WDIV-Local 4 and Graham Media Group. I strongly believe in the power and value of local television and I am very proud of what my colleagues at WDIV have accomplished together during times of great successes and world challenges,” said Drutz.
“I believe now is the right time for me to retire and the station is operationally very sound and positioned for continued success.” Drutz is most proud of the two wins of the Service to America Award in 2011 and 2017. The prestigious national honor presented by the National Association of Broadcasters recognizes the station’s commitment to outstanding community service.
Prior to joining WDIV, Drutz worked at the E.W. Scripps Company and WXYZ-TV (Detroit) as the Director of Programming. Earlier in her career, she was the Marketing Director at WJBK-TV (Detroit). Drutz began her career as a research analyst at WJW in Cleveland. Throughout her career in broadcasting, Drutz has received numerous professional awards including Broadcasting & Cable’s “General Manager of the Year” in 2017, the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Michigan Association of Broadcasters, Emmy Awards, first-place awards from the MAB and a “Top Woman in Management” Award from the Detroit Chapter of American Women in Radio and Television. She has been honored as a member of the NATAS Silver Circle, Crain’s Detroit Business “40 under 40,” and has been selected by Corp! Magazine as one of Michigan’s Top Businesswomen.
Drutz is a frequent speaker at industry events and conferences. A native of Louisville, KY, she holds a bachelor’s degree from Ohio University in journalism and communication.