In September 2005, after 10 years as a news anchor/reporter, Heather Dawson created the news magazine show Southern California Life as a way of providing positive news to the Southland. After several years of success, Heather expanded the newsmagazine show to the entire state of California. In March 2009, Heather became co-owner, co-executive producer and Host of California Life with Heather Dawson. www.californialifehd.com
The statewide newsmagazine show is now airing weekly in all 10 TV markets including ABC, NBC & CBS. Heather handles every aspect of the show from pitching segment ideas to booking guests, writing scripts, coordinating shoot schedules, social media networking, media relations, sponsorship, reporting, producing and editing as well as managing a team of journalist while remaining a lively host on-camera.
Beyond covering events such as The Oscars and The Critics Choice Awards, Heather has interviewed a variety of influential people including President George H. Bush as well as conducted the last interviews with beloved Cowboy Roy Rogers & Dale Evans.
Prior to California Life, Heather began her broadcasting career as a reporter-at-large for NBC -- developing, writing, shooting and editing her own reports and interviews. In 1995, she became one of the youngest News Directors in the business.
Heather was the International Model Search Winner and Cover Model for American Swimwear Magazine. She was also featured on Baywatch, Bold & The Beautiful, Renegade.
Born in Texas and raised in California, Heather is a graduate of San Diego State University where she holds a bachelor of arts in Communications. Heather enjoys spending time with her husband and three daughters.
Wes Parker grew up in Brentwood, California, and was first baseman for the Los Angeles Dodgers from 1964 to 1972.
During his nine years with the team he was named team Dodger in 1970 and won both the Lou Gehrig and Brian Piccolo Awards for his work helping young people stay off drugs. He also won six consecutive Gold Glove awards as the best fielding first baseman in the league and in 2007 was voted by the fans the best fielding first baseman of the past half century. Following his career in baseball, Wes went into television and radio, hosting a daily health show in 1984, starring in a nightly sitcom for Norman Lear, and in 1987, he hosted a radio pre- and post-game show for his hometown Dodgers.
Wes resides in Pacific Palisades and continues to work for the Dodgers on their Speaker's Bureau, fulfilling speaker requests at schools, Little League openings, Christian groups and service clubs.
Audra Stafford is excited to share her love of entertainment (and Southern California) with California Life! As the entertainment reporter for ABC-10 in San Diego, Audra covered such star-studded events as the Academy Awards, Daytime Emmy Awards and Dancing With the Stars. She has interviewed many of Hollywood's and Broadway's finest actors, directors, producers and musicians, including Frankie Valli, Robin Williams, Jon Voigt, Helen Mirren and Jerry Bruckheimer. She was also one of only two journalists in the nation to be embedded in a production of CATS during its national tour.As a correspondent for BroadwayWorld.com, Audra showcases San Diego's renowned theatre community, including the Tony Award-winning La Jolla Playhouse and The Old Globe. She has also covered the hit Las Vegas shows Le Reve, Cher, MANILOW, Donny & Marie and Human Nature. Audra is a distinguished graduate of San Diego State University's Television, Film and New Media Production program, where she earned two Student Emmys. She also received an Emmy for her work as producer of 10-4 San Diego. Audra is a proud member of the Screen Actors Guild.
In addition to being a reporter for California Life, Monique is the Founder and Host of Wine Oh TV. Wine Oh TV is a place for Wine Oh's and Foodies to get their fill with their very own video window into the wine world.
Monique is a trained journalist and has over ten years experience working in broadcasting. Most recently, she worked as a Host/Entertainment Reporter at KPIX-TV and KSEE 24 and Traffic Anchor/Producer at KPIX-TV. In addition to working as a broadcast journalist, Monique is a trained SAG/AFTRA actor and studied at The Atlantic Theater Company in New York, Warner Loughlin Studios and The Groundlings in Los Angeles, and has worked on various films, television shows and commercials.
Deanna Russo Clark lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Christopher, in a cozy beach house directly across the street from the sand. She began her own business Entegrity in 2001, specializing in product integration for luxury brands within the entertainment industry. Her love for all things inspired, inevitably led her to begin this blog. The goal of integrations is to thread all of life’s little pleasures into one place via food, fashion, beauty, photography, styling & writing.You can also watch Christina recapping episodes of Ugly Betty on TV Guide Network. When not working Christina spends her time sightseeing around her new home state.
Christina Erwin is new to Los Angeles from Dallas, Texas; where she graduated from Texas Christian University with a Broadcast Journalism degree. Since graduating she has worked as reporter/entertainment anchor for Fox News affiliates across Louisiana. Christina has spent much of her career covering sports, also working for the Dallas Cowboys and 103.3 ESPN radio.You can also watch Christina recapping episodes of Ugly Betty on TV Guide Network. When not working Christina spends her time sightseeing around her new home state.
Concetta DeLuco is beyond thrilled to be working for California Life HD. Before moving to Los Angeles and covering stories throughout Southern California, she was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. After graduating from Pace University in downtown Manhattan, she packed up and leaving her Italian American roots behind, most of her family and cold winters, she moved to sunny Tampa, Florida where she worked as a multimedia reporter for several years. From TV and radio to print and online, she has worked in many different platforms and produces, shoots, reports, writes and edits her own packages. Her journey so far has taken her from working as an on air traffic reporter for Clear Channel Communications, On-Air Feature Reporter and Videographer for the CBS affiliate, WTSP 10 News and their local entertainment website, Metromix.com and Special Segment Producer for the NBC affiliate, WFLA News Ch. 8 to freelancing as a contributor to countless local lifestyle newspapers and magazines in the Tampa Bay area.These days in Los Angeles, when she is not working as an online editor for Under the Tuscan Gun.com, food blog of celebrity chef Gabriele Corcos and actress Debi Mazar, hosts of the Cooking Channel show, Extra Virgin; freelancing as a writer for several publications; covering stories for California Life; or running around attending auditions as an actress, she is an amateur chef working on her own food & lifestyle blog, proud mother of 3 rambunctious dogs, 2 cats and a turtle, playwright dabbler and avid LA explorer.
David Wylie is an award winning news reporter who has been covering Southern California on both radio and television for more than 20 years. Born and raised in the Pasadena area, David is a life long resident of the Southland. In addition to his contributions for KVMD's California Life, David can be heard Monday thru Friday mornings on KOLA 99.9 radio where he is the news director.
Jonathan Khamis graduated from California State University, Fullerton with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Broadcast Journalism. While at Fullerton, Jonathan covered numerous sporting events, including the prestigious Titans baseball program. He then went on to work with KDOC-TV where he covered all matters surrounding Orange County. Jonathan has also worked with baseball Hall of Famer Gary Carter on a television show, and currently works as a video journalist with the Orange County Register covering news and sports. He brings his knowledge and passion for sports to California Life, as he showcases the best teams and athletes the Southland has to offer.
If it has wheels and goes fast, that's where you are likely to find our "Burnin Rubber" segment reporter J.R.Ybarra. As a lifelong motorsports enthusiast, J.R. has been able to weld together his love of anything that has wheels and his broadcast career, with assignments as a producer and announcer for motorsports programming on outlets such as Speed TV, The Outdoor Channel and Fox Sports Net.When not covering both regional and national level racing events, J.R. has been known to take a few laps as an amateur road racer and shifter kart driver at his home track, The Auto Club Speedway in Fontana. Born and raised in Los Angeles, J.R. has now adopted the Inland Empire as his new place of residence. Through his career in broadcasting, J.R. has also spent time as a news reporter and anchor for Silver King Broadcasting and as a radio announcer for various stations in the So Cal region. When not driving his beloved Saleen Mustang around the track, he can also be found "driving" a golf ball or two at a nearby course in the IE.
Most folks don't realize their passion in life at such an early age, but Gabrielle knew from the moment she could speak that she had the gift of Gab! Gabrielle is our Social Media Reporter and is thrilled to be bringing the Best of California to our viewers! She loves exploring and can't wait to bring her discoveries to our show so if you have suggestions or story ideas feel free to email her.
Leloba Seitshiro is a two- time Emmy Award winning Journalist, who got her start as a Reporter for the Daily News in Botswana. She then Anchored and Reported for Botswana Television and UT-TV in San Diego. Leloba also worked for abc10 in San Diego as a Writer, Assignment Editor, and Associate Producer. She's an avid tennis player who's proud to call California home.
Jose has been in video production for almost 20 years. He started his career at KHIZ TV in master control, where he quickly moved on to photographer for live newscasts and media production. Soon after, Jose was promoted to be the director of live news casts at the station. Years later, his career took him to The National Training Center at Ft. Irwin, California to work as a civilian contractor for the U.S. Army to produce military training media. Jose went on to become lead of the International News Network (similar to CNN), a mock network newscast for military training purposes. Currently, Jose continues to be a training development specialist out at Ft. Irwin, a News Stringer for various news outlets, along with contributions to California Life HD.
Holly Kammier is an author, freelance writer, and television reporter with more than twenty years of experience. She has coordinated coverage for special events including: Primetime Television Emmy Awards, The Oscars, and Golden Globes. Getting her start in Los Angeles as an assignment editor, Holly investigated and scheduled news stories, assigned, dispatched, and monitored teams of reporters covering news events throughout the greater Los Angeles area, as well as field produced stories for evening broadcasts. Holly worked for CNN and as an on-air reporter for two NBC affiliates on the west coast. The UCLA graduate is currently working on her second book while taking on special TV assignments and serving as a writing coach.
Tiffany is from Gary, Indiana; located 25 minutes outside of Chicago and hometown of King of Pop, Michael Jackson and the Jackson Family.After gaining a dual degree in Broadcast Journalism and African American Studies from Indiana University (Bloomington, IN.), Tiffany was a correspondent for the Post-Tribune newspaper while producing, reporting and writing for Chicago's WMAQ and WBBM radio stations, WBBM-TV (CBS), and then Central City Productions (one of the nation's first African-American owned production companies with syndicated programming) . Next, Tiffany produced and anchored the NBC affiliate's live two-hour morning news show in Champaign, Illinois. She then became a General Assignment Reporter for Fox News in Evansville, Indiana, covering stories like the first U.S. troop deployments to Iraq following the 9/11 attacks, and an investigative series on the escalating trend in local domestic violence. Wanting to be more creative, she landed in Los Angeles, working as a tv extra, while performing voice-overs for nationally syndicated radio program, "The Tom Joyner Morning Show", and writing for The Sun newspaper. Tiffany also stretched her talents by developing, producing, reporting/hosting, and writing digital content for a high profile film and entertainment production company in Hollywood.
Jacques Luben, CEO of Inc. Plan (USA), a prominent online Incorporation firm in Delaware, is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and holds an MBA degree from Columbia University. He has occupied management positions at Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley in New York City. In addition, for 15 years, he served as the Executive Director of Platinum Guild International (USA), a leading mining trade association with offices in six countries. Mr. Luben, in his capacity as precious metals expert and former head of the Platinum Guild of America has been widely quoted in the New York Times and Wall Street Journal. He has also been a frequent guest on CNN and CNBC, among other broadcast outlets. For the past 4 years, Mr. Luben has acted as a business correspondent for California Life.
In memory of Tom R. Sparks (1976-2009), his family and friends have set up a scholarship fund at USC's Annenberg School of Communication to help graduate students in Broadcast Journalism achieve their dreams. The scholarship will be awarded to students who share in Tom's love of life, show a commitment to the field that Tom held so dear, and who display a touch of Tom's eclectic personality. We hope that through this scholarship, Tom's legacy at USC will live on for generations to come.