Amanda del Castillo
When I was a little girl, my parents woke up with morning news and ended their day with evening broadcasts. Sure, as a five-year-old girl, I didn't understand what was being reported, but I knew the men and women on television news had the answers, the confidence, the access, and the respect. It seemed they had it all.

So, I set that goal.

I was born and raised in San Francisco's Excelsior District, where I got my first taste of reporting. Of course, the only viewers were my parents. Ha ha! I would deliver detailed reports about the mischief my brothers got into. Needless to say, I wasn't the favorite sibling.

Fast forward to my adult life. I graduated from San Jose State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Broadcast Journalism. During my college graduation, the director of the program offered a piece of advice that I took to heart: "Remember, there's a life outside of California."

I moved to Casper, Wyoming. Fun fact: more people fit into Candlestick Park, than lived in the small city. While in Casper, I wore many hats. I reported, edited, produced and anchored. I fell in love with the "Cowboy State" and culture. I also fell in love with my husband-to-be, who worked at a competing station.

The industry took me to Waco, Texas next. I worked as a weekend anchor and multi-media journalist. I did it all again, reporting, editing, producing and anchoring. The Texas Associated Press Broadcasters Association was kind enough to award me for my reporting in Waco.

I covered developments stemming from the West Fertilizer Plant explosion, Twin Peaks biker shootout, and contributed to the station's live coverage on Baylor University's alleged sexual assault cases.

I made my way back to the Rocky Mountain region and worked as a reporter in Denver, Colorado. I covered the Taylor Swift trial, the terribly cold winters, and other issues impacting one of the most beautiful states I've ever called home.

I won an Emmy Award for my contribution to the station's breaking news coverage on the most difficult assignment I've ever worked on as a journalist. In the early morning hours of New Year's Eve day, a deputy down call turned deadly.

After nearly two years in Denver, I jumped at the opportunity to return and work at home, in the San Francisco Bay Area. I joined the ABC7 News team as a freelance reporter in June 2018. In October, I officially became a full-time reporter.

My wildest dream has come true. This is where it all began.

I'm thrilled to be working among journalists I've admired my entire life. I'm grateful I get to tell stories about the people and places I'm so incredibly passionate about.

I'd love to tell your story. Feel free to reach out on Twitter, Facebook or through email: Amanda.L.delcastillo@abc.com.

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