Fearless Females Friday
I met Tanya Rivera probably 4 years ago but I know she doesn’t remember that because I was just a fan girl bugging her at some event she was doing an appearance at. I always loved watching her on WFMY because she was (is!) such a warm and inviting person and completely endeared viewers to her. She started with WFMY in 2002 which pretty makes her a lifer around here. One of the other things that I love about Tanya is that she is just so darn happy all the time. I have never seen her without a smile and she’s almost always laughing… a girl after my own heart! She’s super engaging on her social media channels and that’s how we started chatting more frequently (as opposed to me being creepy fan girl and just showing up where she was doing appearances…). We finally got a chance to meet up at Foothill’s a few weeks ago for #TasteNightTuesday and now are anxiously waiting for Foothill’s to release their Moravian Porter for the holidays… so yummy!!!
If you’re not from the area, I encourage you to check Tanya out… I know you’ll love her as much as I do. Added bonus? She’s a ginger like me!!
How do you spend your free time?
Experiencing something! I’m a fan of big and small experiences. So, a hike to see waterfalls in western NC, seeing the sunrise when I walk my neighborhood, playing my record player (yup, got one of those & i have old vinyl and new. The Adele album is amazeballs), opening up all the window and listening to the crickets, trying a new beer every Tuesday night. Nothing crazy. But there is something to experience and enjoy in the everyday.
You’re a fan of craft beer – what’s your favorite type of beer and if possible, your #1 favorite?
I am! About a year ago I started #TasteNightTuesday. Every Tuesday I taste a different beer. It started in the backyard, with just me. Then friends started saying they wanted in. Then people I only knew through social media said they wanted in. It’s been a good way to connect with people. The only beer I won’t try is a pumpkin beer. Pumpkin spice belongs in baked goods. Anyway, locally, my favorite go-to is Red Oak Amber Lager. I like their Hummingbird in the summer too. I’m an Amber or dark beer girl. So, give me a brown ale or a stout any day. My current fave brown ale is Rogue Hazelnut Brown Nectar Ale from Oregon.
If you could only keep 5 possessions, what would they be?
Hmmm. What a random assortment: my phone (but not for the connection, for the 18,000 photos/videos that are on it), a coffee maker of some type, my Bible (I read it daily), my hot iron (you have no idea.Without it: frizzball party of one, mascara (i know 2 beauty things, gag! but i feel like I don’t look like I’m awake without mascara)
In the span of your career in the news, what was the hardest story for you to report and also, your favorite?
The hardest story was the Apartment X series. The 2WTK unit teamed up with the Guilford Co. Sheriff’s department. The detectives talked online to possible sex predators and when the guys traveled to meet the 14-year-old girl for sex, they first met me. Most of them thought I was her mother (Jeez. At the time I was just 33!) Anyway, I hated knowing this guy was so messed up he wanted to have sex with a 14yr old. I hated knowing the world of his family members was about to change drastically. I wanted people at home to know this kind of stuff doesn’t just happen “somewhere else”.
One of my favorite TV moments was when our station put together a homecoming celebration for WWII vets. They took at bus to the memorial and then they came back to the Hanes Mall, people were lined up to cheer them. We did the newscasts live from there. To see their faces & hear how their hearts were full because they were recognized for how they made history was one of the best days I’ve ever had.
What advice would you give your 18-year-old self?
Stop comparing yourself to others. You’re not them. You’re you. Be the best version of you, whatever that happens to be at that time. Oh, and don’t get the pixie cut, you’ll look like a boy.
What is your favorite quote and why does it speak to you?
My Dad used to always say, “everyone puts their pants on the same way.” When I was younger, it reminded me that just because someone was popular, important, or older, they were just people & i didn’t need to be intimidated. But as I have gotten older, the saying also reminds me, we’re all human. There is common ground to be found, I just might have to look a little harder for it, but it’s there.
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