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Behind the Scenes with Jennifer Bauer

By Ashley Lancaster

KPRC Channel 2 reporter and Sugar Lander shares how becoming a mother brought a new perspective to her life and career

Written by Gail G. Collins | Select Photography by Sara Isola

How did you get into television news?
I’d wanted to do TV since I was 12 years old, and I had a passion for writing. I used to set up my family’s video cameraand record fake newscasts. I earned a journalism degree from Michigan State University and have been in the business for 15 years. I bumped around from my home in Michigan to Florida and have been in Houston for four years now. KPRC is my fifth TV station.

INSET-JenniferBauerCityHall

Jennifer Bauer dreamed of becoming a TV reporter since she was a young girl

What do you love about being a reporter?
Every day is different. It is never boring; it’s one adventure after another. I love being at the scene of the story and meeting people.

What makes a good story?
My favorite stories are those that make a difference – people need help and call the station to resolve it. It may not even be complicated, butwe have the resources to connect. It makes for a good day.

What are some of the challenges you face?
I have those on a weekly basis. The tough stories involve children, crime on a family, or car accidents. I talk to the families, but it is important to
get the news out, and it can make for some long days and long nights.

SLM_F_14_Jennifer Bauer_submission SL Magazine

Bauer has won two Emmy awards for her excellence in reporting

What is an average day like for you, balancing motherhood and work?
I have a great schedule for a working mom. My husband, Mike Guerrieri, is hands-on and also works for Channel 2. He is at the station first thing, and I work in the afternoon and evening. An au pair takes care of the time in between. My daughter Aubrey is 18 months old, and we can sleep in, play and read, and I can feed her lunch before her nap. I wouldn’t trade my mornings with her for anything. Then, I get some breathing space before I head to the station. There, I attend an editorial meeting, where we talk about recent news, tomorrow’s big story, and prioritize. The stories are assigned, and we head out, but often, we’re rerouted for breaking news. Then, I do my live shot, and sometimes, I have an appearance around town.

Has becoming a mom changed your point of view in covering the news?
Before I had Aubrey, I used to get upset if people said, “You don’t understand, because you haven’t had children yet.” I do understand, now, how much priorities shift. I have more compassion for family stories.

How does your family react to you being on TV?
My larger family is used to it after all of these years, but it’s new to Aubrey. She points at the screen and says, “Mama.” On delayed broadcasts, I may be at home next to her, and she’ll look from the screen to me, confused.

SLM_F_14_Jennifer Bauer_submission by Katie Lee Photography BL1C8248

Bauer’s husband, Mike Guerrieri, also works at KPRC. Their daughter Aubrey sees her broadcasts and recognizes “mama”

What do you love about Sugar Land?
My husband and I adore everything about the area. We’d heard so much about the parks, community, and schools that three years ago we built a home in Riverstone. Weekends are spent hanging out at Sugar Land Town Square. There are movies, music, and lots to do. We’ve tried all of
the restaurants or get frozen yogurt. My daughter could sit in front of the fountain for hours.

Do you have any advice to anyone who wants to enter the news business?
You have to be passionate about it. The news is 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. It never stops. You will end up working holidays, but those who are passionate about it don’t mind. SLM

GAIL G. COLLINS has worked as a print reporter, and like Bauer, enjoyed meeting people and telling their stories.

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