What a thrill it is to be back in the Show Me State! My news career has taken me all over the country, and it’s long been my ambition to get back to my Missouri roots. I couldn’t be happier to do so with FOX-4.

I am a native of a small Mississippi River town, Elsberry, just north of St. Louis. I graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in broadcast journalism and psychology minor from Webster University-St. Louis in 2006, and completed my Master of Arts in Communications Management through Webster’s online school in 2011.

After finishing undergraduate work, I started my television career as a general assignment reporter and fill-in anchor with KHQA in Quincy, Ill. I even filled in as a weathercaster a time or two.

Following a year in the Land of Lincoln, I headed to Tornado Alley in central Kansas to head up the Great Bend bureau for KSN-TV, where storm chasing was a frequent occurrence. During my time in the Sunflower State, I was recognized several times by the Kansas Association of Broadcasters.

I then swept off to Iowa in 2010 and spent three years as a reporter/fill-in anchor for KWWL in Waterloo, where my work included covering a slew of presidential candidate visits, more storm chasing, the “farm beat” and an extensive investigation into synthetic drug dealings, which ultimately led to criminal prosecution of a local store owner. I also successfully got a national food chain to change its advertising to remove a negative reference to Iowa.

In 2013, I made a big change of pace leaving the wheat and corn fields of the Midwest for the mountains of West Virginia as a reporter and weekend anchor/producer for WCHS/WVAH in Charleston. During my time in the Mountain State, I also became the chief education reporter, wrote a successful blog and spearheaded a community initiative getting high school dropouts back on the path to a diploma. In July 2015, I was ready to leave behind snow storms for year-round sunshine as a reporter at ABC Action News in Tampa.

My husband Floyd, our son Drake, puggle Aleah and I are now proud to call Kansas City home–a community we often visited growing up, and where we have friends and family.

When I’m not chasing down the news, you might catch me outside running. I frequently compete in 5K races and have done a few triathlons. I’m also involved with my local church and Habitat for Humanity. Because apparently that’s not enough, I’m a certified Zumba instructor and dabble in portrait photography.

When I’m not busy with all of that, I love to travel, spend time with family, and catch up on St. Louis sports. We are huge Cardinals and Blues fans. (And following the bitter departure of the Rams, you might convince us to be Chiefs fans now!)

We like to say the Red Birds follow our life’s big moments–winning World Series championships the year we got married and again the year our son was born.

My job is to be a voice for you, and I welcome your input and suggestions for stories. I look forward to hearing from you!

Recent Articles
  • Desecration of infant’s grave at KC cemetery leads to team effort for answers, closure

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. — An historic cemetery in Kansas City helped unravel a 155-year-old mystery. Now, a team effort is helping put a disturbing crime to rest. “We bury our dead. We put them in mausoleums. But really, we keep them in our heart, and you can’t desecrate that,” said John Weilert, board of trustees member at Elmwood Cemetery. But someone did desecrate one of Elmwood’s family tombs. “We had noticed that one of the windows on the doors to […]

  • 420 enforcement in Kansas, Missouri will step up patrols for impaired drivers

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Police around the Midwest will be out in full force this holiday weekend, including here in the metro. It’s a first of its kind enforcement, trying to get drug-impaired drivers off the roads. The stepped-up patrols are being dubbed the “420 enforcement.” While the number 420 and date April 20 are often tied to marijuana use, troopers are watching out for all impaired drivers in hopes of preventing crashes and saving lives. When you’re out on […]

  • Metro school districts eye changes to address bus driver shortage

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. — School districts nationwide are struggling to find enough bus drivers, and that’s forcing them to eye changes to how they operate. Park Hill Schools in Kansas City’s Northland continue to struggle with how to get kids to class without enough bus drivers to go around. “What that ends up meaning is that we have lapses in service,” said Nicole Kirby, Park Hill spokesperson. Last year, Park Hill eliminated some bus routes and consolidated others to help. […]

  • Clinton police paying it forward to Missouri Law Enforcement Funeral Assistance Team

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Last year was a deadly year for law enforcement officers in Missouri with four line of duty deaths. Carrying out just one police funeral is a major undertaking. But there’s an incredible organization based right here in the metro that helps heroes have the send-off they deserve. And now, one agency that’s benefited from their services is paying it forward. There’s nothing quite like a funeral service for a fallen officer from the motorcade and patriotism […]

  • 4-year-old with dwarfism denied access to Merriam IKEA child care helps change store policies

    MERRIAM, Kan. — A Midwest mother had a less-than-pleasant experience during a recent trip to the Merriam IKEA. It wasn’t because she spent hours weaving through the massive maze-like store, but because of what happened to her family at its child care center. The family’s ordeal is now prompting changes by the company. Whitney Crowder and her family visit the Kansas City-area often, and on a recent trip, they stopped in the Merriam IKEA. Her two 4-year-old sons, Rollie and […]

  • Historical Atkins-Johnson Farm and Museum reopens for visitors in Gladstone

    GLADSTONE, Mo. — You can once again step back in time at a historical farmstead in Gladstone. The Atkins-Johnson Farm and Museum is once again open for visitors after closing for the winter months. The farmstead dates back to the 1820s and is home to the oldest still-standing log cabin in Clay County. It’s named for the Atkins and Johnson families who spent the most years living in the home and farming the land. After undergoing historical preservation, the site […]

  • Potential 2020 presidential contender Howard Schultz meets with Kansas voters

    OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — A 2020 presidential hopeful is making his case to Kansas voters this week, and he’s the first potential candidate to meet one-on-one with voters in the metro. Howard Schultz is considering a White House bid as an independent, and on Tuesday, he hosted a town hall at Johnson County Community College in Overland Park. More than a hundred students, staff and community members came to listen to former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz talk about his vision […]

  • ‘Going to the dogs’: Metro nonprofit helping protect police K-9s with vests, other needs

    HARRISONVILLE, Mo. — FOX4 continues “Working for Blue” as our mission to help protect those who protect and serve all of us. Not only do police officers put their lives on the line, so do dozens of K-9s that work with them. There’s a fairly new organization based in the Kansas City area committed to keeping them cared for and safe. Harrisonville Police Officer Matt McCulloch is proud of his K-9 partner. “He’s the best partner I could ask for. […]

  • Following plea for help, Smithville shop for cancer patients finds new owner

    SMITHVILLE, Mo. — A shop specializing in items for cancer patients in Smithville will stay open with a new owner. Last month FOX4 told you the owner of Absolute Dignity, Kathy Dibben, was stepping aside now that her cancer has returned. She put out a public plea, hoping someone would step in and take over the shop, which has proven a critical resource in the Northland. Nita Pridgen says when she heard the news, it was a jab in the […]

  • Platte County may need to hold new election in two Parkville wards due to mishap

    PARKVILLE, Mo. — Tuesday’s election is in the rear-view mirror for most of us. But in Platte County, two races are still undecided. The votes are counted, but for the Parkville Board of Aldermen, questions remain. It turns out a mistake at the election board could force a new election. “April elections are always fun because there are a lot of districts voting. We end up with like 52 ballot styles,” said Chris Hershey, Platte County Board of Elections director. […]

  • Independence approves controversial $30 million plan to implement smart meters

    INDEPENDENCE, Mo. — The Independence City Council is drawing fire after approving measure to install so-called “smart meters” for electric and water customers. The council previously voted “no” on the issue, twice, and took a new vote this week, without warning. Smart meters, also known as advanced metering infrastructure or AMI, are designed to capture your water and electric use without requiring someone to go into neighborhoods and read meters. But some residents and council members don’t think the cost […]

  • Friends identify man, 2-year-old daughter found dead in burning car in Platte County

    RIDGELY, Mo. — The Platte County Sheriff’s Office and Missouri Fire Marshal continue to investigate after the bodies of a young man and toddler were found Sunday burned inside a car. Authorities were called to the car fire Sunday morning on Highway B, just outside the town of Ridgely. The sheriff’s office said there’s a lot of circumstantial evidence pointing to who the young man and toddler are. They’re now just waiting on the medical examiner to confirm the identities. […]

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