FROM NEBRASKA TO NEW YORK
Hey! I was born and raised in Omaha, Nebraska and graduated from Papillion-LaVista high school.
I chose to attend the University of Nebraska and study Journalism, with an emphasis in Broadcast. I've always been someone who was comfortable with public speaking, and I loved the philanthropic aspect of journalism — the ability to shed light on underrepresented communities and forgotten stories. Plus, I grew up watching Oprah every day after school, so basically I just wanted to be her.
During my junior year of college, I applied for a summer internship with the CBS Evening News. They were holding a competition to be Katie Couric's intern, and I had submit a news package on one of three topics. I chose global warming. To my surprise, I was picked for the internship and spent my summer learning from Katie and the producers at 48 hours and 60 minutes. It was an eye-opening summer, and I started my senior year of college with renewed focus.
During the first semester of my senior year, I applied for another national video competition— this time to be the First-Ever Nike Field Reporter. The video I made was silly and fun, but it caught the attention of the judges. I signed on for a 6-month contract and was told that I'd be traveling once a month to interview athletes. In reality, the program grew quickly, and turned into a 9-month contract where I was traveling three times a month. My GPA suffered during my senior year, but I also got to interview Serena Williams, Lebron James, Magic Johnson, and my childhood idol Jackie Joyner-Kersee. It was a dream job, and I was able to graduate on time in the spring of 2008
After NIKE, I spent a few months as a local reporter at KETV in Omaha. However, graduating during the recession meant that they couldn't offer me a full-time job. Instead, after some luck and creative thinking, I reconnected with Katie Couric's office at CBS in New York. I spent two years as Katie's production assistant, before leaving to work briefly at The Daily Beast as a video producer. In 2012, I was hired as a researcher at Katie Couric's daytime talk show, where I was later promoted to associate producer. During this time, Katie also gave me the opportunity to appear on-camera as a technology correspondent — doing segments on a variety of topics from digital detox to the best apps for every lifestyle.
In 2014, I was hired at Yahoo Travel as a travel editor. To date, this is the most memorable job I have ever had. I would take a trip once a month to some far off and exciting country around the world. I went to Fiji, Tokyo, South Africa, the Canary Islands and Australia's outback. I swam with whale sharks in Cancun, slept in a castle in Vienna, and surfed the beautiful beaches in Alentejo, Portugal. I would write about my experiences, edit original video and also copyedit the stories of other travelers. It was, in a nutshell, the coolest job I've ever had.
As Yahoo continued to evolve as a company, my role also changed. Yahoo Travel was shuttered and I was reassigned to Yahoo Finance where I spent two years writing personal finance stories. While finance wasn't my strength, it was a time of tremendous growth. I was writing every day and appearing on our live web shows to discuss the business news stories of the day.
As Yahoo became Verizon Media, I moved within the company to the thriving platform called BUILD, a long-form interview series. I was a huge fan of the series before joining the team, and it's been my privilege to show up to work every day. In addition to daily long-form interviews with some of the biggest names in entertainment.
It's been a fun journey, filled with a lot of unpredictable twists and turns. My advice is to buckle up and stay on the ride. That's when the fun starts.