Not just another job
It’s been the most professionally and personally rewarding decade of my life.
When I first came to “the nickel” in 2003, I had just given birth to my son a month before, leaving my husband and daughter behind in Los Angeles so she could finish the school year.
It was just my son and I, living in an apartment the station put me in for three months to give me time to find a home.
I scrambled to find someone to care for him while I worked, feeling immense guilt at leaving such a tiny guy in the hands of someone else while I went to work each day. But there was something special about the place. I knew it wasn’t “just another job” and, though I’d go home each night to a very colicky baby, I sort of felt like maybe he understood.
The people who hired me then were caring, deeply supportive and never caused me to reconsider for a moment that returning to the Valley after a four-year stint in Los Angeles was the best move I’d ever made.
One of the things I stressed the most in my interview was that I was very passionate about my involvement in the Latino community, and I wanted to know that the station would support me in those endeavors. They did then and they do now.
The people who hired me then are no longer here. But, the people who now hold those positions are equally supportive – not just of me personally, but also of my commitment to this community. And so, I would be remiss in celebrating this milestone at CBS 5 News if I didn’t share it with all of you in the community. I would not be here without your support through the years.
Some of you might remember when I came to the Valley the very first time, just 24 years old with only a few years of broadcasting experience under my belt.
KPNX had hired me and the lovely Lucia Madrid (in charge of station community relations) put together a reception in my honor, to welcome me to the community and give me a chance to get to know many of you.
You welcomed me with open arms and, when I left 6 years later, it felt like I was leaving family. Coming back was like coming home.
In the cumulative 16 years I’ve lived and worked in the Valley, we’ve collaborated on many community events together. We’ve sat on boards together. We’ve spent weeks in leadership training together. We’ve worked on projects to inspire and encourage our youth together. You’ve respected when I’ve had to ask the tough questions, and you’ve appreciated the objectivity that comes with my job. You’ve welcomed me into your home. You’ve cheered for my personal triumphs and have been quick to offer a hand when I’ve taken a fall.
For all that, I celebrate with gratitude and appreciation.
Catherine Anaya anchors CBS 5 News weeknights at 5, 5:30, 6 and 10 p.m. She is a mother of two, marathon runner and motivational speaker. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org, connect with her on Facebook, Twitter and at CatherineAnaya.com.