Rissa joined the KWTX-TV news team in December of 2016. Although she loves her hometown of San Francisco, she's thrilled to be out of the rain and in sunny Central Texas! She's seen Waco experience significant growth since she moved there in February of 2015 and is excited about the direction it's headed!
Here's a little more history on this gal that's so taken by Texas...
After graduating from the acclaimed Walter Cronkite School of Journalism & Mass Communication at Arizona State University (go Devils!), Rissa started her career as a reporter for KIEM in Eureka, CA. While everything's 'bigger in Texas,' everything's more complicated in California (just kidding...sort of). While in Eureka, Rissa ran the gamut, covering stories from the local politics surrounding marijuana dispensaries in "the green triangle," to the state's budget cuts to education, to environmental issues including tree-sitting protests in area forests. Rissa ended her time there behind the desk as an anchor and Interim News Director.
Rissa briefly left the news business, grabbing the chance to pursue one of her dreams: politics. She became a political consultant and worked on the lieutenant gubernatorial campaign for then-Mayor of San Francisco, Gavin Newsom. Her job landed her opportunities to work with California Governor Jerry Brown, former President Bill Clinton, and, on numerous occasions, President Barack Obama. Did you know, she has Secret Service clearance? She put on political events, managed press, and even drove in the Presidential motorcade; opportunities of a lifetime she will never forget, or regret. Fun fact: President Clinton loves hummus!
Although Presidential politics was a thrilling adventure, Rissa missed news. So to be closer to her best friend in Austin, she accepted a job at KAVU-TV in Victoria, TX. She was the main, female evening news anchor for three years, anchoring the 6 & 10 p.m. newscasts, and producing the 6 p.m. newscast to its highest ratings in years. Rissa loved being a part of the community by hosting events, emceeing fundraisers, speaking to elementary schools and more. She was nominated for Best Local Celebrity by The Victoria Advocate in 2014, 2015, and again in 2016 (even though she had been living in Waco for a year). Victoria gave her a glimpse of the grand state she'd soon come to love.
Moving on to her next Texas town and challenge, Rissa entered the Waco news market...and it stuck! She loves Central Texas and finds something new to cover, someone new to meet, a new person to give a voice to every day and loves it.
While she's new(ish) to the Lonestar State, she has family ties to Texas; her great-grandmother was from Goliad and attended Texas Christian University, and her grandfather and grandmother were married in Corpus Christi while he served in the Navy.
On a personal note, she loves movies, Texas Country music, horseback riding, going to concerts, chai lattes, brunch, and animals (she has two cats but can't wait to get a dog, too).
When you see her around town, give her a high five!