Can i brag?
OK, I'm going to. And yes, those are real Emmy Awards.
Phew! Where do I start? It's a bit of a daunting task to try and tell strangers about your background so they think you're more than just a pretty face. By the way, I am not saying I am a pretty face...but working in such a public arena, I've realized that most internet trolls think women are only hired for their looks.
Clearly I'm not that woman. Otherwise I would have been a model (and trust me, I tried)
My journey started when I was a young girl. I have always had an affinity for reading books and writing stories. In fact, many times I would ditch hanging out with my friends to instead sit outside on the hammock and immerse myself in other people's stories. When my cousins and I would gather together for family parties, I was the lone child talking into a hairbrush and pretending to interview the other kids. But then again, I also made tons of videos pretending I was a background dancer for Janet Jackson. You can see where the whole storyteller but also an entertainer thing was born, right?
It came as no surprise that when I applied to colleges, I just knew that I wanted to work as a journalist, a writer...and an entertainer.
I was accepted into the University of Illinois at Champaign/Urbana where I studied Broadcast Journalism and also dabbled in psychology and Spanish.
Post college, I told myself I'd never work in a small town. So guess what I did? I got a job in a small town as a general assignment reporter and fill-in weather anchor. In this market, I shot and edited my own stories, daily.
After some time in Northern Wisconsin--reporting on everything from a murder to a local library worm race--- I needed to move back home to Chicago where I continued my career in television, this time behind the scenes. I honed my skills in the third largest market as a producer--everything from Politics, LIVE breaking news to feature segments--as well as writer and shooter/editor.
During this time I also continued my studies at The Second City Chicago, where I learned the art of improvisation, acting and voice-over. While working full-time behind the scenes in media, I was also the on-camera host of several digital shows ranging in topics from technology, real estate, video games to Thai Food.
Let's fast forward a bit, shall we? Since then I've worked at CLTV/WGN as a producer/writer, CBS Chicago as a producer/writer, FOX Chicago as an on-camera traffic anchor and feature reporter and Hubbard Broadcasting (SHE 100.3) with my own radio show "Jenny Milk and Jay".
Since then I've won Emmy awards for writing for a newscast, Promo production on-air talent and storytelling in arts/entertainment.
I am first generation born in America. Both my parents were born in Poland and came to Chicago. My first language was Polish. I have distinct memories of going to kindergarten and not being able to fully speak English.
Needless to say...I wet my pants. A lot. Don't judge me.
Kids were cruel and I was shy. They taunted me with "cat got your tongue" and my mom needed to send me to school with a backup pair of pants each day. The good thing about kids...our brains are sponges. By the time I went to First Grade, I was fully immersed in the English language, and for the most part, my pants wetting days were over. Well, there was that one time when I was in Girl Scouts, but that's a story for another day.
Some other random facts about me: I was a gymnast and have some gnarly scars to prove it. I can still do the splits. I LOVE to dance and don't care if you think I'm good at it.
I am not only a reporter and television host, but I am also a content creator. I believe in creating unique content for each platform in order to reach the largest audience possible. Recently, I was awarded the TEGNA Transformational Contributor Award for helping advance the broadcast and digital industry. Thank you to my bosses for seeing the value of my work and submitting me for this honor!
I have more than 16-years of producing and writing experience. This includes all sorts of projects from Politics, Breaking News to Feature segments.
Something I'm very proud of is my recent half hour show that I produced, wrote and starred in! My photographer Rachel and I were the only ones to work on this project. The special aired both on CBS and The CW.