Media

After 5+ years, a local TV traffic reporter is switching stations

"When one door closes, another door opens!"

NBC10 Boston traffic reporter Olessa Stepanova.
NBC10 Boston traffic reporter Olessa Stepanova. Courtesy NBC10 Boston

A familiar face in local TV news is moving to a rival station.

Olessa Stepanova, formerly a traffic reporter for WCVB-TV Channel 5, will take on weekday morning traffic duties for NBC10 Boston and NECN. Stepanova will step into her new role during the week of Aug. 12.

A WCVB employee said it was Stepanova’s decision to leave the station, and that she informed leadership on Friday, June 28, which turned out to be her last day.

That day, Stepanova also shared a Facebook video joking around with her “NewsCenter 5 EyeOpener” colleagues Antoinette Antonio, Randy Price, and Cindy Fitzgibbon about her pregnancy, as well as an Instagram post revealing that she was expecting a boy and a girl. By the end of the weekend, her name was removed from the news team list on the station’s website.

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Stepanova stayed mum on Facebook until a July 26 post, in which she revealed she was no longer with WCVB.

“Now to address the elephant in the room… I am no longer with WCVB,” Stepanova wrote. “During my five and half years with the EyeOpener I was lucky to meet some incredible people, work with some of the most talented co-workers and make some lifelong friendships. My experience was made extra special by all of you wonderful viewers who have become like family. Leaving channel 5 was a sudden and unexpected change and I’m sorry I didn’t get to say goodbye to all of you.”

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In the same post, Stepanova hinted at her new job without revealing specifics.

“When one door closes, another door opens! I’m happy to let you all know that we will still be able to spend our mornings together very soon!,” Stepanova wrote. “I have some exciting news that I will be able to share with you all next month! I’m looking forward to this new chapter and I hope that you all stay tuned for the announcement and continue to stay in touch!!!”

In a statement to Boston.com, Ben Dobson, vice president of news for NBC10 Boston, Telemundo Boston, and NECN, said Stepanova’s extensive knowledge of her beat would be an asset to the company.

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“Olessa’s knowledge of New England roadways make her a significant addition to our morning team,” Dobson said. “I am excited to watch all of her contributions and know her faithful viewers will be too.”

Prior to her time at WCVB, Stepanova was a morning traffic reporter for WFSB in Hartford, Conn., where she also frequently co-hosted “Better Connecticut,” the station’s daily lifestyle show.

Stepanova, who grew up in New York City and earned her degree in broadcast journalism from Long Island University-Post, also previously covered traffic for a number of NYC-based channels.