"Behind the scenes" - Beyond the Ron Burgundys...

Hello. Glad to have you on my blog site today. Merry Christmas to you and yours! Let's get down to business. I struggled with my blog topic this week. I couldn't think of one. Then one of our producers, Kristen Beatty, said, "Why don't you write about us?" I thought, "Jeez, why didn't I think of that?"

After all, this is a "Behind the Anchor Desk" blog series. So why don't we talk about the people literally working their tails off behind the anchor desk? Eureka- the producers!  I'm telling you, you've got to see these guys in action. They're something else. They're in charge of writing our broadcasts and choosing the daily story content you see. If it weren't for them, we wouldn't have a show- period.

I figured this is an especially timely topic. considering the whole world is going bonkers over the release of the new "Anchor Man II." (Jeez oh Pete's! It's all Les talks about.) Fine, I admit it! I occasionally toss out an "I'm Ron Burgundy?" (Okay, I secretly can't wait to see it either.)

(Pictured above: Ron Burgundy, Anchorman)

We have a total of seven producers at the station. Typically, our producers are fresh out of college. Oh, they're ready to set the world on fire when we first get them. Then they begin to really "live their dream," and within one month, their attitudes begin to deteriorate... rapidly. I can say that. I've done it and watched it over and over. Daily, I work closely with the same group: Tammy, Justine, Katie, Kristen and Ashley. Tim and Joseph- I still dig you guys too.

My day begins with Miss. Justine Borst and Mrs. Tammy Lightfoot. These two young ladies pretty much get paid to keep me in line. I will never admit that to them in person. I may even deny I wrote this blog. The ladies arrive to the newsroom at about 11 p.m. every weeknight and don't leave until 7 a.m. to 7:30 a.m. the next day. (Whoa, rough right?) Talk about dedication. Tammy and Justine are a two-man band.

(Pictured above: Morning producer Tammy Lightfoot)

They work through the night to produce two hours of live news coverage all by themselves. They then have to deal with Les and I. If you've watched us, you know we need a babysitter. Justine and Tammy- you ladies are my rock. I tip my hat to you. Proof is in the ratings, gals. I admire you dearly.

(Pictured above: Morning producer Justine Borst)

Maybe that's why when I received a text from them at 3:10 a.m. Wednesday, reminding me it was "National Cookie Day" and double checking that  I was going to remember the cookies, I quickly kicked it into gear. There I was in the middle of the night. Within a half hour, I was glaring at the vending machine with my dollar bills in hand, typing in the code for Oreo cookies. Oh wait! Then they demanded hot chocolates. They know about my stash. I was playing waitress at 3:30 in the morning before the show. What am I, Santa's helper? Haha, kidding. I respect you more than you know. Thank you for starting off my day on the right foot everyday!

The producer role in every local newsroom is fast-paced and a lot is expected of you. At about 8:15 a.m. every weekday, producer Katie bursts through the doors.

(Pictured above: Afternoon producer Katie Fulp)

Always fashionable (whatever Katie). Always in a rush. I like to joke with Katie. Actually I love to pick on Katie. You can ALWAYS tell when she's had too much coffee or drank a Red Bull. She definitely "has wings." She sculpts our noon shows several days through the week. I've truly enjoyed watching her grow over the course of the year. Plus, she is one of those quiet, sassy types. Those are always fun to work with. I must tell you Katie, you've truly mastered the art of making sure things are updated in "the planner." Also, you were by far the best-dressed ECU Pirates alum at the games this year... again. When are we going to T.J.Maxx together? Enough about your cat, TYLER! That's all we hear about!

Next up, Jersey! Kristen Beatty glided into our newsroom with both feet. I guess that's appropriate because she's been a figure skater her whole life. Like me, Kristen isn't "from around here." She's our Syracuse grad who tends to the later shows. She sits next to me everyday. I still don't know what she does while I'm there. But she's always the first to jump in when Katie needs help.

(Pictured above: Producer Kristen Beatty)

When news breaks, she truly knows how to jump into the fire and work hard. She's most definitely glued to Twitter and breaks news faster than any other news outlet I can think of. (Maybe that's what she does all day). I definitely know she's online because she makes us take quizzes like, "What American Accent Do You Have?" Thanks Kristen. As If I didn't know I sound like Sarah Palin.

Ashley Koch is an interesting cat. She's from Colorado. She has a husband and her son is nearly 2 years old. His name is Sebastian. Isn't he cute?

(Pictured above: Ashley, husband Bryan and son Sebastian)

Ashley recently packed up her family and moved to Eastern Carolina to follow her TV news producing dream. I truly admire her for that. She strolls in, generally with a Dunkin' Donuts coffee in hand. A few Fridays ago, she came in with a croissant sandwich and said, "What? It's Friday! I went for the croissant." Hey, no judgement girl. Fridays are our unofficial cheat day in the office. Well, at least I know I'm cheating. Ashley produces the noon show roughly two days a week. You, my dear, are the calm among the news storm. Thanks for adding your Colorado touch.

These ladies are in their early 20s. They are full of energy. They're beautiful and smart. I'm amazed by their responsibility level. They make mistakes and get upset. But they care and they want to succeed. I enjoy my mornings with you more than you know. Thanks for everything, from the fashion advice to the latest happenings with Miley Cyrus and Lady Gaga. Girls, keep the past sorority life stories flowing. Ashley, I love to hear all about Sebastian. Kristen, that accent rocks!  KATIE, I just can't deal with you! Just kidding. I love our Friday music exchanges. NOW, CAN ONE OF YOU GET ME A COFFEE! Jeez!

Let's be clear.  There are other instrumental personalities in the office who I work closely with everyday. But we can't reveal everything at once. In time,  I will give a shout-out to our other producers and staff.

So now that I think about it... Girls, should we go see the new Anchor Man movie together? Maybe we can drag Les. "News team assemble!"    


Until next time,
Anna B.

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