Channel 5 viewers pledged a record $1,137,291 over the Labor Day weekend for the Jerry Lewis Telethon on behalf of the Muscular Dystrophy Association ...

That was more than $100,000 over the previous local mark and part of a record-setting national total of $39,021,723 raised by Lewis this year, up an astonishing $5 million over last year's total ...

Five aired the Telethon from 11 p.m. Sunday through 6:30 p.m. Monday ...

Geraldo Rivera's new syndicated hour, "Geraldo," debuted Monday night on Channel 7 following the USC-Michigan State football game and ABC's "Nightline." The new program registered a 4.0 Arbitron rating and a 19 percent audience share (and a 2.2/10 in the Nielsen count) in its initial outing. Each rating point represents about 15,800 TV homes in this market ...

C-SPAN will provide live coverage this morning of the confirmation hearings for Judge William S. Sessions to be director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation ...

The Senate Judiciary Committee hearings run from 10 a.m. until noon ...

MacNeil/Lehrer Productions announced yesterday that Donn O'Brien, one-time chief censor for CBS and most recently vice president of finance and business planning for CBS Sports, has been named controller/director of administration. He replaces Charles Stewart, who retired ...

PBS won 11 Emmys and CBS 10 last night in New York at the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences' news and documentary awards. ABC took nine prizes, NBC six and syndicators one. Among the leading individual programs were "CBS Evening News With Dan Rather," NBC's "1986" and ABC's "20/20," which took three awards each ...

Channel 7 consumer investigative reporter Roberta Baskin has been named winner in the documentary/news feature category of the Scott Newman Drug Abuse Prevention Award and, as writer of the series, will receive a $10,000 cash prize at ceremonies set for the L'Ermitage hotel in Beverly Hills, Sept. 21 ...

Baskin's series, "Flying High," dealt with problems of alcoholism among airline pilots and aired last October on Seven. The series was produced by Kathleen Pearce ...

Another Scott Newman award, which was established by actor Paul Newman in memory of his son, will go to Washington-based producer Don Ringe for his syndicated special on drug abuse called "Wasted: A True Story," which won in the children's program category. Ringe produced the program, which also aired on Seven, for the American Council of Drug Education ...

Baskin's trip to Beverly Hills works nicely into plans for a honeymoon. She marries Jim Trengrove, Capitol Hill producer for "The MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour," on Sept. 19 ...

Catching Up Even as Captain Airwaves languished on vacation, the TV world somehow continued to twirl ... so TV Column fans might excuse whatever reruns sneak into the next few items ...

Dan Lewis, Paul Berry's former 5 p.m. co-anchor at Seven, has signed with KOMO in Seattle, where he'll anchor at 5 and 11 p.m. on weeknights as well as report for the ABC affiliate starting later this month ...

Meanwhile, as previously reported, Susan King moved over from Channel 4 to join Berry as co-anchor on Seven at 5 p.m. King debuts on Sept. 28 ...

She brought her "Susan King's Cover Story" segment with her from Four. It will air weeknights at 11 p.m. once King is settled in ...

WJLA will attempt to syndicate "Cover Story," but if it doesn't get off the ground, King gets full rights to the segment after a year. That, a guaranteed three-year contract, reports of a raise over her WRC salary and an $80,000 severance payout from WRC make King a solid candidate for Escape Artist of the Year ...

Her contract with Four was up last week but indications had been she had run out her string at WRC and general manager Jerry Nachman had no plans to keep her in an anchor spot. There's talk that when she confirmed to Jerry Nachman she was talking to other stations, he used the acknowledgment to end contract renewal talks on the spot ...

Obviously, Seven is sure King is going to help. She's already slated to travel to Nicaragua next week for the station, and yesterday Seven announced that it's hired Judy Plavnick, King's former producer at Four, to be field producer for "Susan King's Cover Story" ...

Also at Seven, where Renee Poussaint and Wes Sarginson will continue to anchor at 6 and 11, Poussaint has been assigned to follow Pope John Paul II around the country on his entire nine-day tour, which starts tomorrow. Jim Clarke will also cover part of the pontiff's trip ...

The weekend anchors will continue to be Kathleen Matthews on Saturday and Robin Chapman on Sunday, but Seven is still on the lookout for a permanent replacement ...

And Dave Sweeney, who was notified in midsummer he didn't fit into long-range plans at WJLA, will remain as weatherman at least until sometime in October ...

Seven returns "Magnum, P.I." reruns to the 4 p.m. weekday time slot starting Monday and initiates its closed-captioning of the 11 p.m. news the next night ...

Meanwhile, Channel 4 is installing former weekend anchor Susan Kidd along with WWRC-AM talk show host Joel A. Spivak as co-anchors for the weeknight "Live at Five" hour, starting Monday afternoon -- to coincide with the debut of NBC's new "checkerboard" program schedule for 7:30 p.m. weeknights ...

Jim Vance and Dave Marash (who replaces the departed King at 6) will co-anchor both the 6 and 11 p.m. weeknight news ...

Lea Thompson, who co-anchored the 5 p.m. news with Marash, will remain to lead what Nachman says will be a beefed-up consumer investigation unit at Four ...

But keep in mind that WRC made a strong bid for the syndicated version of "The Cosby Show" when Viacom offered it in auction in this market a few weeks back (an auction that Channel 5 won for a rumored $70,000 a week for 3 1/2 years) ...

WRC reportedly wanted "Cosby" for 5 p.m. starting next year, and the idea of cutting the early news hour in half in favor of an audience-grabbing sitcom rerun is not dead out on Nebraska Avenue, where Four has been dogged by low news ratings at 5 for too long, due to poor lead-in audiences from game shows, etc. ...

Also in the News

ABC News this week launched a new promotion campaign around the slogan "Expect the world of ABC News." The campaign will run through the fourth quarter and eventually spotlight all the top Newspersons ...

Which reminds us: Steve Friedman, who led NBC's "Today" show back to the top and then quit to join GTG Entertainment to create a syndicated TV version of USA Today that will debut next fall, reportedly is very high on ABC's Kathleen Sullivan and NBC's Robin Lloyd as potential co-anchors for the program ... if they should prove available ...

The program format currently calls for three anchors -- for news, sports and life styles ...

The Grant Tinker-Gannett production is aimed at the 7:30 p.m. time slot and will originate from USA Today's headquarters over in Arlington. Steve's received more than 600 applications for jobs so far -- and he only reported for work last week ...

Mary Martin has been named deputy bureau chief at the CBS News Washington bureau. She replaces Joe Peyronnin, who was promoted to bureau chief this summer ...

Martin, a 14-year CBS employe, has been producer on the weekend news. She is the daughter of Post-Newsweek Stations vice president Jim Snyder ...