"San Diego is my home, and I feel privileged to be able to report on the issues that affect my family and my neighbors."
That's what Rory Devine says about her job as a reporter at NBC 7 San Diego since 1984.
Rory specializes in covering stories about education, where her experience as a teacher proves to be most helpful. As a graduate from Saint Mary's of Notre Dame in South Bend, Ind., Rory has degrees in French, English, and Secondary Education. She also went to USC for a Master's degree in broadcast journalism.
She first worked at an all girls' Catholic High School, where she taught English. Her next job was very different, and one that made a lasting impact on her life. She went to Watts, where she taught high school students who could only read at third grade level.
"I wasn't sure what to expect. It was a tough time in South Central Los Angeles in the late 1970s and early 80s. There were security guards in the halls, and safety alarms in our classrooms. I realized when I was told a student had been shot, that it was okay if learning wasn't always a priority ...because surviving was."
While teaching during the day, Rory earned her Master's Degree in Broadcast Journalism at night, at the University of Southern California. To pay tuition, she worked as a teaching assistant at USC on the weekends.
Upon graduation, Rory traded the schoolbooks for the TV camera. Her first television job was at KSBY-TV in San Luis Obispo, Calif. While there, she did it all, working as a producer, reporter, and anchor.
After that, Rory went on to jobs as a reporter at WTTG-TV in Washington, D.C., followed by work at KHJ-TV in Los Angeles. She worked in L.A. during the week, and on weekends, she worked as a freelancer in San Diego. In 1985, she was hired at KNSD full time, and made San Diego her home.
During the past 19 years, in addition to reporting, Rory has worked as the anchor for NBC's Today Show morning updates, as a weekend anchor for the station's 6 and 11 p.m. newscasts, and as an anchor for the station's 4 p.m. newscast. She currently anchors the weekend morning news.
In 1995, she went to the Super bowl in Miami, where even she scored a touchdown. Of course, it was just part of the "NFL" experience, where non-professional athletes can find out what it's like to be a professional football player.
In 1996, she brought home the flavor of the Olympic Games in Atlanta, covering the panic over the Olympic Park bombing, as well as the excitement over the gold medal win by the United States Women's Gymnastic Team. "It was an experience of a lifetime. I will never forget being at the closing ceremonies, where Ray Charles gave a surprise performance. I remember being on the air trying to relate the emotion-filled moment to San Diegans."
It seems viewers like what they see. Her work has been honored with numerous awards: Emmys from the National Association of Television Arts and Sciences, a "Golden Mike" from the Radio and Television News Association, Harold Keene Award for Journalism, and honors from the San Diego Press Club.
"But my highest honor is being allowed into the lives of people who have shared their deepest, most personal stories with me; how they have enriched my life. There are so many people whose stories I have told over the years, people who have touched my life, who have made me laugh, and who have made me cry."
If you listen closely, you might catch Rory's Boston accent that still sneaks in occasionally. As one of seven children, Rory thinks that a big family environment taught her to be assertive as a journalist.
She is married to a psychologist practicing in San Diego. They have a teenage son, Doron, whose Hebrew name means "Gift of Laughter." Rory's son is a college graduate.
Drop Rory a line: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Follow her on Twitter at http://twitter.com/RoryNBCSD