Catching up with Tiffany Eddy after WMUR
"Wow, really?" That was the general reaction to Tiffany Eddy's recent announcement that she was leaving her job at WMUR-TV. In the 14 years she was there – as main anchor, reporter and host of "NH Chronicle" – Tiffany had become a familiar and much-admired personality. (Testimony to that admiration – she has a whopping 4,354 Facebook friends.)
People wondered why she was "really" leaving a job she loved and they loved her doing. All you have to do to find an answer is go to her Twitter page description of herself and see what comes first for her: "Mother, broadcast journalist, mother, writer & chicken farmer (small flock). BIG fan of Boston sports, Hartford Whalers and lover of all things NH."
Her children – 4-year-old Garrett and 7-year-old Meredith – were growing up fast and Tiffany hardly saw them during the work week. Enough, she said. She's started a PR company, FocusFirst Communications, and is director of public affairs at Granite State College. The change, she says, is "electrifying."
In a word, how does it feel to leave WMUR? Electrifying.
You've said you had the "best job in the state." Why did you leave? I have two young children and wasn't seeing them much during the work week. My TV job was the envy of many, but the job I really cared about had the title "Mom."
What were your hours? I would leave for work at 2 p.m. and get home after midnight.
Was there one moment when you knew you had to leave? My kids would always ask me "will you come home when I'm awake or when I'm asleep?" I'd have to respond, "when you're asleep." And then they'd ask me why I couldn't be home at night like other moms.
Why do you think people keep asking you why you "really" left? Broadcast journalism is a very difficult field to break into – people don't normally just walk away from a highly coveted main anchor position at a prominent television station. I get that, but I needed to be with my family.
What was the best moment at WMUR? A waitress once came up to me with tears in her eyes and thanked me for a story I'd produced on domestic violence. She told me it gave her the courage to leave a bad situation. I will never forget that moment. To know you've helped someone is one of the best feelings.
Worst moment? Covering any situation where a child has suffered always disturbed me. Unfortunately, there are just so many of those sad stories that need coverage.
What will you miss about it? I'm a news junkie, that will never go away. I loved being the first to know what was happening during breaking news and then being able to tell others
Is TV news as glamorous as people think? Definitely not! It's a very challenging industry. Imagine if your job demanded that you go out in the elements, research a subject, collect all useful data, conduct interviews, boil it down into a thoughtful, accurate report and present it in-person to the board of directors of your company? That's just a taste of what a broadcast journalist does daily.
What's the best part your new life? I'm home for bedtime. I'm grateful for all my past experiences, but excited that I'm now able to play the role I want in my kids' lives.
What's the advantage of working for yourself? This week my daughter is singing in a concert at her school. I blocked it out in my calendar and will be there for the entire performance.
Best advice you ever got? A wise old news anchor once told me, "everyday in this business is a gift." He was right! But parenthood is also a gift. In my case, it was about giving one gift back and getting another better one in return.