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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Wednesday, Oct. 22, 2014

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In Movies & TV Commentary

Vince Vitrano and Sam Sodos anchor the noon newscast on WTMJ-TV.

Sodos feels at home on WTMJ-TV


Home. It's a funny four-letter word that we can use to define who we are, especially when we travel away from it. Home can evoke memories of the people and family members we associate with it, and it can be a destination to come back to.

WTMJ-TV Ch. 4 anchor and reporter Samara Sodos took full advantage of the career opportunity to come back home.

"I'm just happy to be here and now be more grounded with family and friends," she said after finishing up one of her work days after anchoring the noon broadcast at the NBC affiliate in Milwaukee.

"I graduated from Nicolet, and then I wanted to leave home, to leave Wisconsin," Sodos said. "I wanted to see what was out there … what was different than what I was used to."

Her career took her to Virginia where she saw a different perspective and covered stories like KKK rallies, and she witnessed extraordinary events when covering hard news in Florida. She spent a year in Israel, writing for a news outlet, and worked in Sen. Herb Kohl's office for a time, as well.

But through all those experiences, including working for multiple years in a Top 15 market in Tampa, Sodos said she was always proud to tell others she was from Wisconsin. And, with the opportunity at WTMJ, she gets to practice her craft close to home.

"I report, generally, on the overnight developments," Sodos said of the early mornings. "And then I'll turn a story between the morning (newscast) and noon."

Sodos credits the team she works with at the station for being so warm and welcoming, and she said that Vince (Vitrano) is one of the funniest people she ever met. She said this role fits her well.

"The best thing is essentially I have the opportunity to tell stories," she said.

INSIGHT 2014: WTMJ-AM 620 talk show host Charlie Sykes is preparing for Insight 2014, a live event scheduled for 6:30 p.m. tonight at the Country Springs Hotel in Pewaukee.

Sykes will host the show feature Gov. Scott Walker and U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin.

Also attending: Michelle Litjens, political consultant; Mikel Holt, associate publisher for the Milwaukee Community Journal; Brian Fraley, managing editor for RightWisconsin.com; Jeff Wagner, WTMJ-AM 620 talk show host; Rachel Campos Duffy, author and pundit; Mary Jo Baas, political consultant; State Sen. Leah Vukmir; Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke; Waukesha County District Attorney Brad Schmiel; Milwaukee Alderman Bob Donovan; Brian Sikma, communications director for Media Trackers; Collin Roth, associate editor for RightWisconsin.com; Kayla Gabrielse, field staff for American Majority Wisconsin; and Shannon O'Connell, of the Conservative Young Professionals of Milwaukee County.

Tickets are required to attend this event and are no longer available for the general public. "Insight 2014" will be re-broadcast during the "Charlie Sykes Show" on WTMJ from 8:30 a.m. to noon on Thursday.

NEW ANCHOR, NEW SHOW: Fox Business Network will launch a new program hosted by new anchor Deirdre Bolton on March 31.

The show, "Risk and Reward with Deidre Bolton" will air at noon weekdays.

"We're excited to add 'Risk and Reward with Deirdre Bolton' to our lineup. Alternative investing is an immensely untapped field and Deirdre's expertise in this area will help broaden our market hours coverage," said Kevin Magee, executive vice president of the network.

Bolton will explore alternative asset strategy capitalizing on the most up-to-date movements in real estate, hedge funds and venture capital. In addition to assessing breaking market moves, the program will provide an in-depth look at non-traditional ways to make money beyond stocks and bonds.

The new show will replace "Markets Now," which will end its run on March 28.

DIVERGENT: "Popsugar Now" on TVGN has dedicated this entire week to the film "Divergent," which opens in theaters on Friday. The show – that airs locally at 5 p.m. weekdays – will feature exclusive content and interviews with cast members Shailene Woodley, Theo James and Miles Teller.

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