#MediaMonday – Maria Hechanova
Today’s #MediaMonday features Maria Hechanova who is a weekend morning reporter at 3TV in Phoenix. So, Maria, time to share!
Tell us how you got your start? Tell us your story!
I took a journalism class in high school and once I realized I could get paid to ask questions, write, and talk (three things I loved doing) I was hooked! I wrote for my high school newspaper, delivered the morning TV announcements, and hosted a Teen Talk show on Glendale 11. In college, I landed two TV news internships that shaped my career – KPHO CBS 5 News in Phoenix and the Today Show in New York City.
Tell us how you came to start working in the media scene?
My first TV job was in Yuma, Ariz. as a producer/multimedia journalist. I sent the news director my resume reel about a year before I graduated from college and asked, “What do you think of my work? What skills do I need to improve to be ready to work for you when I graduate?” A photographer from my KPHO internship used to work with the news director and put in a good word for me.
Where did you grow up?
Glendale, Ariz. Graduated from Ironwood High School in the Peoria Unified School District. Go Eagles!
Where do you live now?
Hard to pick just one. You can usually catch me wearing a lot of purple or maroon.
Three things readers would be surprised to know about you?
My social media hashtag is #WhatTheHech. My last name is pronounced “Hetch-uh-no-vah,” which can be a mouthful, so some coworkers started calling me “Hetch” for short. So instead of “What the heck!” – it’s #WhatTheHech!
Do you take pitches? If so, any guidelines? What is the lead time you need for content or pitches?
Yes! I book 90 percent of my weekend morning live shots. Is it visual? What will make it engaging? Who is available to interview live before 9:30 a.m.? I have more flexibility to cover feature stories on my weekend shift compared to the weekday, but content still needs to be timely and impactful. I love discovering where families can go to make memories and spend quality time together. Best days to pitch to me are Mondays and Tuesdays before noon.
What is the best way to reach you?
Email followed up by a text message. Hope we can connect ASAP! I’m scheduled to go on maternity leave mid-March.
And anything else you might want to add!
As a former DI college swimmer, I felt called to combine my swimming background and broadcast skills to launch #SwimSafe, Arizona’s Family drowning prevention campaign. Our 2021 partners are Valley of the Sun YMCA and Leslie’s Pool Supplies. Read why I’m passionate about keeping everyone safe around water: https://mariahechanova.com/