WE tv Turns on ‘Locator’ Beacon

Apr 6, 2008  •  Post A Comment

WE tv has picked up a new series called “The Locator” as part of its ongoing effort to become more of a player in the women’s market by pumping up its original programming. The series will debut in September.
“The Locator” features Troy Dunn, who has spent the last 15 years searching for and locating missing persons. During the series’ 10 half-hour episodes, Mr. Dunn and his team of investigators, law enforcement officials and psychics will take on a case free of charge for people seeking birth parents, abducted children or long-lost relatives.
“‘The Locator’ is an exciting, powerful new series that brings people together through emotionally charged journeys and tireless efforts to reunite families and loved ones all over the world,” said Kim Martin, executive VP and general manager for WE.
Original programming also gives cable networks an opportunity to add content to their Web sites. With “The Locator,” WE will be accepting missing-persons stories from viewers. One of these cases will be taken on by Mr. Dunn and featured in an episode of the show.
Since Ms. Martin arrived at WE three years ago, the channel has been increasing its roster of original programming, which now accounts for about 60% of the schedule.
Thanks to three of the network’s highest-rated series, “High School Confidential,” “Women Behind Bars” and “Women on Death Row,” ratings rose 25% among both women 18 to 49 and women 25 to 54 in the first quarter. That follows the best fourth quarter in the network’s history.
Some ad buyers have noticed WE’s rising numbers and see it as a growing alternative in what is becoming an increasingly competitive market for women’s networks. The leaders are Lifetime and Lifetime Movie Network, along with NBC Universal with its combination of Bravo and recently acquired Oxygen, plus Comcast’s Style Network and the Oprah Winfrey Network coming from Discovery Communications next year.
Jason Kanefsky, director of national broadcast at MPG, said small networks like WE really aren’t that much of a factor in his media plans.
“They have to crack the top 10. They have to become Lifetime,” Mr. Kanefsky said. “The network attracts heavy TV viewers, and if there was no WE, they’ll watch Lifetime, they’ll watch Bravo. It will be a question of how much more it will cost me to reach them because I’m buying WE at the low-end price.”
Compared to Lifetime in prime time in the first quarter, WE attracted an average of 89,000 women ages 18 to 49, compared with 440,000 for Lifetime. Among women 25 to 54, Lifetime averaged 448,000 viewers, while WE had just 91,000.
“We’re climbing the ladder,” Ms. Martin said. “I’d love to be another Lifetime in regards to viewers. More than 50% of the population is female, so there are a lot of women viewers out there.”
Ms. Martin said it’s the original programming that is pulling the channel’s ratings up.
Areas of Interest
WE original programming falls into three categories she calls “WE Go Bridal,” which includes the network’s best-known show “Bridezillas”; “WE Reveal,” docu-soaps that attract viewers curious about other people’s secret lives; and “WE Connect,” which are shows about relationships. That’s where “The Locator” fits into the network’s program strategy.
Having a defined strategy is making programming the network easier, she said.
With “The Locator,” Ms. Martin said, the show was nearly bought during the pitch.
“We have a sense of what people are going to watch,” she said.
(Updated to correct WE Connect in third-to-last paragraph)


  1. My sister is a television producer for “a well known daytime talk show” and she sent me this article. Her note read in part, “Somebody actually beat HER at her own game! WE just rolled out a show SHE has been quietly planning to do for years!”
    I think anytime somebody beats HER, they are very smart people. I see good things in the future for janey-come-lately, WETV.

  2. I have it on good authority that the production company fired the woman who sold this show to WE for them and then took the credit. Don’t know how that business is or the exact details but that sound wrong! Also, this corporation has a terrible reputation and a poor track record with productions and someone told me from the “inside” that they are struggling with this show. I hope they can pull it together or WE is never going to trust them with a show again! My girlfriend and I will be tuning in for sure tho…trainwrceck or not!

  3. How could I talk to someone about locating someone for me? I have been desperatly searching for years, and have a rather interesting story.

  4. My family was split up 46 years ago and since then I have located my mother, father, 1 sister of 3 and my brother. There are 2 sisters I cant find and would like to know how to either get on your show to advertise or have your assistance and finding them. The story of the town lottery that was held to split up my siblings when we were abanded by our parents was in readers digest 29 years ago. It is a very long story but I would love to have the chance to tell you.
    Denise Braun formerly Edith Kay Morgan (birth name)

  5. please tell us how the locator can help us. my husband has been searchin for years. for just one blood relative.he was told his parents were jailed causing them to lose touch . the family that took him in gave us the birth parents names . however we cant locate them my husband was born in venice beach cal in 1965 and has been searching for over 20 years. my husband has no blood relitives at all .. thanks j lang

  6. I was a victim of the 1980’s witch hunts by the DES. I adoted my 2 sons out after a long period of foster homes. They now have a little sister, and a older sister who would love to find them. In the last10 years we have tried everything we know to find them. I am very ill and would love to know they are okay. Please contact me if there is anything you can do to help.. Thanks in advance.

  7. Sorry i forgot thier birth names were John-Paul Anthony Garis and Michael-Scott Bernard Garis.. they were born May 19, 1980 and July 22, 1982 respectivaly thanks again

  8. Sorry I forgot their birth names were John-Paul Anthony Garis and Michael-Scott Bernard Garis.. they were born May 19, 1980 and July 22, 1982 respectivaly thanks again

  9. I had to give up a baby when i was 14 years old. I wish I could find him, but I dont have the money for this to happen. I think of him everyday and wish he was in my life with me now. Since I don’t have him here with me, I wish him much happiness. Maybe someday we will find each other. If there is a way by watching the show on how to find someone it would make me very happy to do this. Thanks

  10. It took me 30 odd years to find my father and by then it was to late. He was deceased. Now my grandaughter wants to find her father who is in Mexico. I don’t have a lot of money and have exhausted most ideas I had including calling a private investagator. I will continue trying and you are the one I hope. I don’t want my grandaughter to grow up with that empty hole in her heart as I did. Can you please help me, if only to tell me how to do it. Thank You

  11. I am 32 years old and I am searching for my birth mother I believe to be named Providencia Rosa, according to my birth certificate. I was born in Hauptauge New York in 1976. I was told by relatives that I was given up at birth. I would really like to meet my mother and possible other sibblings. I believe my mother was approximately 18 when she gave birth and I also know that she was in some sort of foster care or group home when she was in her early teens. I have searched everywhere and I can’t seem to find her or any of her relatives. I only own only one photo of her and it is a very small picture taken at the hospital.

  12. My husband has been searching for his parents for almost 15 years. He has 6 kids that have never met their grandparents. If there is anyway that someone could help us, please let me know. I would love for our kids to finally meet their grandparents!

  13. I am a 41 year old female looking for a father who has never met me. My story is kind of interesting I think. I live in America and have for the last 39 years. I was born in Spain and so does the man I never knew. I was a product of an affair, so I was the child that should have never been.
    My mother only gives me very minute details as to my life and that side of my family. My mother’s side of the family has been sworn to secrecy because of how I came about.
    I would really like for my kids as well as myself to know their heritage and family a little better. Even if I just get to see a picture of him and know of him.
    I do not have the funds and realize that there is a language barrier, but I would do all the legwork if someone could get me started on the right track.
    Please help with my biggest request in life.

  14. I am trying to reunite my son with his father. Due to several moves by each of us and such my son has lost contact with his dad. His faternal grandmother has already passed and I would like him to know that side of his family. I have no clue how to get a hold of them and my past attempts have failed. He is now almost 15 and hasn’t seen or heard from his dad since he was a small toddler. I am hoping that I can find out how I can reunite my son with his father. Getting on this show and giving my son a chance to meet his dad would mean a lot to him . I want my son to be able to at least get to know him. I love my son and feel this would mean a lot to him and fill the void he has had for over the last 10yrs.

  15. This show has caught my heart and attention just from the promo’s. It’s got to do well and stay on the air. I will do my part so you, as a station, have to do whatever it takes to keep the show on. You talked about haveing of “sense” of what people are going to watch. Put your good sense to work and do whatever it takes to keep this show on.
    Thank You
    Claire Saunders

  16. my wife has been serching for her father for a long time and she lost hope. I HAVE MORE INF. OF HER DAD .His name is Jose Angel Mendez Hernandez from utuado,PR he might be located in Laurens, Mass. Age 58 born in May 1950. Last time seen 1978.
    Thanks for your help.

  17. what do i have to do for you to locate two people somewhere in the philippine please let me know this is important thank you

  18. A friend, Liz Matten had an Aunt in Buffalo, who died two years ago. Since Liz has no siblings and just lost her mother, she is hearsick and would like for you to find her Aunts living relatives. Her Aunt was her fathers sister, and finding these lost relatives would give her a purpose to live. She is extremely depressed now and feels all alone. Please help my friend. She could sure use an angel right now. Thank you, and may the Lord bless you for what endeavours you may apply.

  19. my name is Lydia Tucker and I live in the PA, but I am really from New York City. I am looking for my sister and brother who was taken from their mother and our father over 30 years ago. The girl name is Lyntasha and the boy name is Leonard or they my call him Lenny. I have some information but I need help to locate them. I know that Lyntasha birthday is in November, but I can’t remember his. They was both born and NYC at Beth Isreal Hosptail and I remember that the boy foster mother loved elephants and that the girl foster parents was a preacher and his wife, I was just a teenage myself so I don’t remember every thing but I do have a little information. So if this sounds like you e mail me. God Bless

  20. i was adopted from the loma linda hospital and my adopted parents said I was 3 days olds when they got me. 2/17/70 was my birth date and the adopted parents are Gaydene Swift Kalua and Winston Churchill Kalua.
    They say my birth mom had mental issue and yet there may have been other children at least 2. can you help me?? I am thirty eight and my girls are 18 and 20 ansd they know nothing of medical info on their mothers side.
    Not a day go by that I don’t wonder where I came from and what my birth mom looks like. I hope and pray here life was as good as i was…
    Please help me, shonda leilani Kalua

  21. Hi I have some questions about finding my birth mother. I am 23 years old and never met my real mother or father. I was adopted at birth and I have this hole in my life i need to fill. My biggest wish it to at least find my mother. I have watched your show and just cry when you can help people find there lost ones. Somtimes I wonder and dream about it. I have a 3 year old son and just recently got married to the love of my life. Please if somone could help me It would forever change my life and maybe even fill that hole i have in my heart.

  22. Hello, my name is I’m 41yrs old been searching for yrs to find my father who I never met. I know his first name but not sure of his last name. I do know the address where he lived in the 60’s. I know I have a brother and sister that’s older than I am, I pray everyday that I can get the chance to find them and meet them for the first time. Plz hear my prayers and plz try and help me to locate them. Thanks!

  23. hi i am 26 years old and i have been looking for my father for about ten years. i have a lot of information on him to help with the search. i know his social security number birthday and realatives. any time that i talk to his realitives they just blow me off telling me that they dont have any idea were he could be but someone has to know something. i have two kids now one is a boy who is six years old and the other is a girl who is three years old that i would love for them to get a chance to know their grandfather. i also have a brother with two kids who has also been trying to find our dad and we have two half sisters that live in Virginia that he pretty much forgot about also. i would be very greatful if you could help me try to find him or if you could give me any ideas of how to find him. im so hurt and angry all at the same time and i need a little closure. so if you could please help me in any way i would appreciate it very much. thank you for taking your time to read a little part of my story.

  24. I was adopted 57 years ago and searched for many years for my mother. My adoptive mother was able to get my adoption papers and original birth certificate and at age 40 I found my natural mothers husband in NY. Sadly, she had passed away several years before that. Turns out she lived only a few miles from where I lived all my life. My original birth certificate indicates that she gave birth to a son before me and I would like to find him before it’s too late. I also have and Aunt and cousins that probably don’t know of me and my natural mother’s husband refused to provide any information. I do have an address and phone number for him.
    How can I have Mr Dunn help me to locate my family before it’s too late?

  25. i was adopted to a very nice family ! but i all ways felt like i didnt belong, i was 44yrs old when i find my birth mom i keep in touch with her and my brothers and my sister even today ! but i stell have a father out there somewhere he doesnt even know about me i was given up at two days old, but wasnt adopted till i was three almost four dont have any imfo on my father ecept that he lived oklahoma on a indian resavation in 1957 meet my mother at a bar in kansas! please help me find him , to let him know he has a daughter and grand sons and great grand kids and that i love him !

  26. I have a very, very good friend who was adopted in 1946. We have a great deal of information on the birth parents but cannot seem to pin it down. At this point, her birth parents are probably no longer living and neither are her adopted parents; however, she might have brothers and sisters.
    She is a very unusually creative, talented individual who would just love to find out “who” she really is.

  27. I have an adopted son who is wanting to find his biological mother.At the time of the adoption(private)his mom was told she could stay in touch, but to wait about six months so he could get used to a new family and get settled in.This was talked over with my social worker at the time.She never did get in touch. He is grown and is serving in Iraq and has a little girl of his own.At the time of the adoption he also had an older brother.Is there anyway you could help us with this or give us some ideas.Money is tight so hiring a private investigator is out.Anything you could offer would be appreciated.

  28. my name is latoya unique douglas i was adopted when i was bron i an 22 years old now. i have been looking for my real family since i turned 16years old, its very hard to find family you dont know any thing about. the only person i know is my real mother and she died when i was 16years old we were not close when i was growing up do to my foster mother. their are 10 of us i have 7 brothers and 2 sisters i dont now at all and i really want to get to know my family and i want them to know me. its been a hard life for me growing up with my foster mother but i lived threw everything thats was and still being tossed at me threw the grace of God. i really need help im getting older each year and it stays on my mind every day about my relatves if they know about me or if they are looking for me to. so i really hope you fing it in your heart to come knocking at my door to help find my family


  30. im sorry i forgot to put the month that candida was born in, it is march of 1982.Candida was last known to be in San Diego Ca

  31. I am cheryl Botello sister i place the ad about finding her baby girl candida emma marie jonrs who was taken from her in san diego ca .i think we have had some people try and contact us if you are one of those people feel free to e-mail me at angelajackson02@hotmail.com and i will get you in touch with cheryl

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