(From Audrey Kolina, TODAY West Coast Senior Producer)
Twenty-four hours ago, I was in Sacramento with Campbell Brown as she interviewed California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger about the war in Iraq, the 2008 election and his amazing political comeback. WATCH VIDEO Fast forward to early this morning, the topic of discussion was, among other things, a story about violinmakers in China, Maria Menounos' American Idol segment, and the Grand Canyon Skywalk. Welcome to the Burbank Bureau.
People always ask: "You work for the Today Show in California? But isn't the show in New York?" Yes. Fair question though. NBC News has bureaus around the world, and the Today Show has a staff of producers in London, Chicago, Washington, D.C., and of course...Burbank, California.
I've worked in our New York offices, overseas in our Hong Kong Bureau, and now am very fortunate to be the Today Show west coast senior producer based in Burbank. Nothing compares to working in a bureau, where the smaller number of people generates a unique camaraderie. In addition to myself, our little group of misfits is made up of five producers, one booking producer, and two associate producers. Together we're responsible for news coverage in the western part of the country, and thanks to the time difference with New York, we end up producing a large number of stories that break after 5pm Eastern Time.
My day usually starts around 5:30am, when I "read in" and prepare for our morning conference call, led by Executive Producer, Jim Bell. Soon after, stories are launched, either for the next day, or further down the road, and we're off to the races. Like the rest of our NBC News colleagues, we thrive under pressure, and there's nothing like the adrenaline of chasing a story, nailing an interview, "crashing" to meet a deadline. It's not unusual for a producer and editor to finish editing a story literally minutes before air.
I don’t think anyone here would trade what they do for a 9-to-5 job. In fact, it's after 5pm in New York now and my phone's ringing. The mother ship’s calling. Gotta go.