Deena Centofanti is an Emmy award winning anchor/reporter who specializes in health reporting and anchors “The Nine”.
Here is how she describes her entire life in a few paragraphs.
Where are you from?
Why is that simple question so complicated?
I spent my early childhood in a Norman Rockwell-like town; Hudson, Ohio.
I remember ice cream socials, a town square with a gazebo, and the exciting controversy that came when McDonald's wanted to build on the outskirts of the village.
In 8th grade we moved to a suburb of Cincinnati- moving at that time, did conjure up all the angst of a John Hughes movie.
I have a brother with special needs and throughout my teens I felt like I was walking a tightrope, trying to balance being a proud sister while quietly blending into the crowd.
After high school I was thrilled to attend Miami (of Ohio) University where I studied broadcast journalism. My mother Marsha is full of compassion and my dad Joe is a great story teller, I was hoping to tap into both those skills and make a difference by telling other people's stories.
In 1990 it was a humble start to my tv career at WSYX in Columbus, Ohio. I was making $5 an hour, doing any job they gave me. This is where I became very close friends with a production director, Keith.
As I moved on to slightly higher paying jobs, Keith did too. At times there were many miles between us, but we always felt like a team. Finally in 1996, we got married- and that was just the beginning of many blessings.
In 1997, I landed the opportunity of a lifetime, the chance to work in Detroit at Fox 2 news. Initially my work life here was really challenging; getting to know a new city, new people, figuring out how to generate sources and stories. As my work life was hard, my personal life was rewarding.
In 1999 I became a mom- and that little boy introduced me to a new level of love.
I stayed up late researching everything I could after how to raise a healthy, happy child. That's when I got the opportunity to be the health reporter.
I didn't take it lightly at the time, and this is still a job I consider to be an honor and a challenge.
As my work life blossomed so did my family. I gave birth to a daughter in 2002 and then another baby girl in 2005. My three children keep me fulfilled beyond words-as they often keep me humble as well.
In my more than 2 decades at Fox 2 I have met so many incredible people, they share personal stories of hardship, tragedy, bad fortune… to help the rest of us learn and grown. I've cried with women facing advanced breast cancer, I've stood with parents who, with pride and tears, watch their disabled children ride a custom bike for the first time, and I've felt the despair of a family suddenly facing a devastating loss that no one saw coming.
Whether it's joy or pain, when we're willing to learn about each other’s experiences and share our stories, you start to realize were all more alike than we are different.
As I reflect, I am so thankful for 2 things; our Fox 2 viewers and my Fox 2 family, both have given me years of support, wisdom, laughter and love .
So when you ask 'where are you from'? I'd say, right here.
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