Today we’d like to introduce you to Ali Dugaw.
So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I started my journalism career at the University of Arizona. As a freshman, I was majoring in political science but once my journalism 101 professor told me, “I think you could sell ice to an eskimo – you’re meant for this business,” I changed my major to journalism, started working at the on-campus PBS station and began writing for the campus newspaper.
After college, I moved back to the Phoenix area and badgered a local TV station to give me a job in production, running camera, floor directing and editing video. I wanted to produce, so I spent my lunch breaks writing for the producers and sent my work to the news director. I quickly moved into an associate producer role, followed by 6pm producer and then producer of a half hour segment-based show.
Leaving TV was hard, but I love a challenge. A local chef hired me to manage her catering and events company – with essentially no experience in the industry – and I did a few other marketing and social media gigs before TV news came knocking at my door again.
Taking my current role as segment producer for “Good Morning Arizona” was an easy decision because I love the positive side of news: telling people’s stories, featuring local businesses and events around the Valley and other stories that impact the community.
Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Good Morning Arizona – what should we know?
I book and produce segments for “Good Morning Arizona,” the most-watched morning show in Arizona. We’ve been called the heart and soul of Arizona’s Family, starting our viewers’ day with news, weather, traffic, community spotlights, small business features and local events. Our cast of characters is large and diverse and I am lucky to work with such a close-knit group of talented and kind people who are all dedicated to making a difference in the community.
When I’m not working at GMAZ, I’m traveling and exploring fun new places to eat, which led me to my new alter ego: the Gluten Free Travel Girl. Realizing I had to give up gluten to help chronic migraines didn’t slow down my passion for food or travel – and now I’m on an adventure trying to find the best GF food on my travels and help anyone I can along the way.
What’s the most important piece of advice you could give to a young woman just starting her career?
I have a few pieces of advice.
My mom always says “go with your gut.” Do what’s right for you, not because it’s what you think you should do or what other people want you to do. It is your journey and you have to live your truth and create the life you want to live.
Do not be afraid to be assertive, go for what you want, ask for the salary you deserve and don’t settle for less. Many times we try to avoid confrontation because we associate emotions with situations, even business matters. But business is business and you can be a badass boss lady and a coworker who people respect and like, you don’t have to choose!
Don’t give up if you don’t find the perfect first job. Keep looking, follow up if you don’t hear back, reach out to people you know, strike up conversation with a stranger on an airplane, you never know when an opportunity will appear.
- Website: azfamily.com/gmaz
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @gmazproducer / @producerali / @glutenfreetravelgirl
- Twitter: ProducerAli
- Other: Side gig: GlutenFreeTravelGirl.com