Even though Hawaii is a paradise of talented female news anchors, I am so happy that if we have to lose Grace Lee she will be succeeded by Tannya Joaquin.
Tannya Joaquin and I started on the KHON morning news on the same day - she was already an experienced anchor while I was a radio anchor who had never done TV before, providing reports from Pacific Business News - and we agreed that if the ratings fell we would blame each other! The ratings did not fall so we never got to execute that plan.
When Bernadette and I married on April 29, 2007 (yes, we will share our anniversary with the royal couple, according to news reports this morning) our co-emcees were Tannya and Kirk Matthews, who revealed only during the reception that April 29 is also the wedding anniversary of himself and Linda Coble (and Kirk and Linda share the same birthday, so the coincidences just keep on coming.) Our wedding day turned out to be Kirk and Tannya's last public appearance together, because the following week Tannya went to afternoons at KHON.
It was only a couple months later that I left Pacific Business News (and therefore KHON) to join KGMB as a founding member of the Sunrise crew, and later Tannya Joaquin came over as well, but still working afternoons. She enjoyed mornings - not all broadcasters do, possibly because of the hour at which mornings begin! - so when Grace was hired by KPIX San Francisco it was a happy circumstance that Tannya was available and willing and even excited to move to mornings.
Tannya's move isn't just a homecoming for her and me - the director of Sunrise from day one, Michael Harris, used to be the director of the morning news over on Brand X. And Michael and I co-created my old weekly show "Everybody's Business" when he was an executive at PBS Hawaii.
I love Grace Lee. I will miss Grace terribly. But it helps that her excellent career move will let me work with Tannya Joaquin again.