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November 1998, El Salvador
It’s my first full week on-air at KCBS-TV. I had come full circle. Back home to Southern California, working alongside some of the best in Los Angeles news.
On day five, my boss decides to send me to El Salvador to cover the impact of Hurricane Mitch from the perspective of a mother, living in L.A. who had no idea if her family had survived. Talk about baptism by fire.
Off my photographer & I go to Central America to cover a story that took enough detours, twists & turns that when we returned to L.A. five days later, our bosses decided we needed to tell the story in two parts.
We did. The story earned us an Emmy Award nomination!
I didn’t win the award, but the experience reminds me – then & now – of the importance of trusting your instincts & timing.
About six years earlier I had an opportunity to work in L.A. at another TV station.
The then news director had flown me in from South Bend, Indiana (where I was anchoring/reporting at the time) to Los Angeles to interview for a reporter position. He picked me up at the airport, toured me around the station and took me to dinner. At that point, I had only been on the air for just under two years, in my second TV market.
I was flattered beyond words at the interest & the opportunity. I think most people in my shoes would’ve jumped at the chance to work in LA that quickly.
I didn’t.
I was honest with myself & with that news director, when I said that I was too young, too green. I needed more experience. While I did admittedly want to return to L.A one day, I wanted to do so when I truly felt I had earned my stripes.
With that Emmy nomination six years later, I finally felt I did.
Whenever I’m asked about what advice I’d give to young women coming up in the business. I talk about believing in yourself, being fearless, & willing to take risks. There’s also something to be said for trusting yourself enough to know when even the best opportunities just aren’t the right opportunities at that time.
Trust the process. Trust your instincts. Trust the timing.

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