Well, I do know two local TV broadcasters who claim they have NOT been contacted by KARE11 about the vacancy created by the departure of anchor Mike Pomeranz.

Neither retired WCCO-TV anchor legend Don Shelby nor current Fox 9 anchor Jeff Passolt says he's heard from KARE11. Both names have been circulating in broadcasting speculation by those who just cannot imagine KARE11 elevating yet another sports guy, this time Randy Shaver, to news anchor.

Passolt's contract is up this year.

The Passolt-has-gotten-a-call-from-KARE chatter has gotten so loud that I've started to joke with sources that Jeff might possibly be behind the talk.

With a pause Tuesday, Passolt said, "No I haven't" when asked if he had received a call from KARE11. Asked how this rumored phone call had become such hot conversation, Passolt said, "I don't know." Passolt sounds optimistic, if cautiously so, about renewing his Fox 9 contract. "We're chatting here," he said, adding, "You know what? Until the name's on the [document], you never know."

Being at KARE11 would mean Passolt would get to see his brother photographer Matt Passolt at the office as well as at family gatherings. "They already have the important one," said Jeff.

Some media watchers think KARE11 could pull a slick end-around, for at least a couple of years, by hiring Shelby, the closest person to a Twin Cities version of Edward R. Murrow.

Shelby's already known in the market, so he has high name recognition after 32 years at WCCO.

Shelby told me he retired from WCCO-TV with no strings attached.

"No, nobody's said anything to me. I haven't gotten a call. I'd be interested. I'd listen to what they have to say," he said.

Because Shelby has such vitality and recently agreed to read some news in the mornings for those who subscribe to former KARE11 anchor Rick Kupchella's BringMeTheNews.com, Don clearly wants to keep his fingers in the news. And maybe KARE wouldn't have to pay him that much money, so as not to interfere with those Social Security benefits? After a long laugh, probably promoted by how much thought speculators have put into this, Shelby said, "I'm not taking Social Security, yet. And I'd probably ask for a little more" than the figure I tossed out.

With neither Shelby nor Passolt seeming to be in the KARE mix, there are at least three possibilities: 1. Somebody local who's not mentioned here; 2. Somebody from outside the market, which could mean another expensive branding campaign. 3. Sports guy Randy Shaver's next stop is the KARE main anchor chair. KARE has promoted two sports guys, Tim McNiff and Eric Perkins, into news.

One other name that figures prominently in the decision is that of anchor Julie Nelson, who'll be looking for the same kind of easy chemistry she had with Pomeranz.

Bright, young and rad-ifying

Minneapolis native Jessie Kalin, an assistant producer of "Windy City Live," has been named one of 2012's "30 bright young things" who make "Chicago rad," according to Refinery29.com.

"She's had her hand in plenty of celebrity, cooking and musical performances, but she's most often found pulling together fashion, beauty and lifestyle segments that feature great Chicago talent," reads the website devoted to fashion, beauty and shopping.

She does look familiar. "You had a picture of her in your column years ago with Leonardo DiCaprio. She took him around Madison," said her mom, Janice Linden Kalin, a psychologist and career coach who runs Business Talent Services, which helps companies hire the right executives for jobs. When Jessie was a UW-Madison student, she did campaign work for Sen. John Kerry and was assigned to squire around DiCaprio and generate a crowd for the actor's appearance during Kerry's 2004 presidential bid.

Jessie's former employers include Oprah and Edelman PR, where she represented "Tony Stewart, the NASCAR driver, all over the place," said her mom.

Kalin said that somebody nominated her daughter for the hot list and "she got in! I thought it was really cute. We're proud of her, and she's really a great kid. She likes to be in the background and do all the things that make people comfortable. She's working hard. This show's on at 9 a.m.; they have to be there about 6 every morning and it's live. I watch it online. All of us are happy for her, but we also laugh about it. She doesn't take it to heart; it doesn't make her arrogant. She just enjoys it, laughs and goes on."

C.J. is at 612.332.TIPS or cj@startribune.com. E-mailers, please state a subject -- "Hello" doesn't count. Attachments are not opened, so don't even try. More of her attitude can be seen on Fox 9 Thursday mornings.