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TV's Gloria Campos On Her Last Night In The Anchor Chair And 'A Turning Point In My Life'

Courtney Collins
TV news icon Gloria Campos sits down with KERA's vice president of news, Rick Holter, to talk about her 30-year career with WFAA-Channel 8, which ends tonight.

For three decades, Gloria Campos has been like a member of the family to thousands of North Texans. In today’s Friday Conversation, the 59-year-old WFAA-Channel 8 anchor talks about her career as the first Latino anchor on local TV news and about how she’ll say goodbye tonight.

Interview Highlights: Gloria Campos on...

...Why she's leaving: "The downturn in 2008 kind of stunted my plans at the time. I was asked to do the 5 o'clock [newscast, in addition to 6 p.m. and 10 p.m.] after we had lost staff.... That was a major component in my decision to speed my retirement because it wore me out."

...The story that's stuck with her: "I remember a young lady ... she was a Latina. And she had been injured really bad in an auto accident. I did several follow-ups on her, and gradually she got better. You know, we didn't really do those kinds of stories in the beginning, to kind of profile a victim like that.... I hate that we would report crime and not talk about the victim."

...On being a trailblazing Latina on TV: "The person who preceded me as a news reporter there had not done well, and was let go after one year. And so I felt a tremendous amount of pressure to succeed so that other Latinos would get an opportunity ... If I don't succeed, then maybe there won't be another one getting a chance."

...A key moment early in her career: "Early on in my career at Channel 8, I want to say 6 months in, someone came up to me in the community and said to me, 'Gloria, when I see you on TV, I see myself.' It was a turning point in my life, and in my career. I thought to myself, 'If this person who doesn't know me believes in me, then I better start believing in myself."

Take a look back at Campos' career -- we have videos of the anchor through the years.

Rick Holter was KERA's vice president of news. He oversaw news coverage on all of KERA's platforms – radio, digital and television. Under his leadership, KERA News earned more than 200 local, regional and national awards, including the station's first two national Edward R. Murrow Awards. He and the KERA News staff were also part of NPR's Ebola-coverage team that won a George Foster Peabody Award, broadcasting's highest honor.