Take Risk to Stay On Top

She grew up in the post Vietnam era when journalism was really making a difference and changing people's lives, according to Valerie Hoeppner.

Valerie knew as a little girl she wanted to be involved in the journalism world because she cares for others. 

She worked in the newspaper industry as a photojournalist for about 20 years until 1999 when she got into multimedia journalism. She says she's was one of the first people to incorporate multimedia into the newspaper industry, and this was at a time when dial-up internet was around. 

She went out reporting one day and when Valerie got back, her boss asked if she had audio with her video, and she did. Then she was asked to put together some form of multimedia for the company she was working for and Valerie said "sure why not?"

"It changed the whole trajectory of my career," said Valerie. "It really showed me the power of multimedia."

Those three words: 'sure why not' are how Valeria lives her life--she's not afraid to take new chances.

"I'm all about new things."

When the first iPhone came out in 2007, Valerie saw how promising it was for multimedia.

"The iPhone is an incredible tool," she said. "Less expensive, no TV crew, and you can edit yourself."

Most of Valerie's multimedia work is produced on an iPhone--she knows all the ends and outs of taking mobile videos. Valerie's constantly traveling to show people how to use their cellphones properly.

Valerie is a go-getter because her mother told her to "never do anything in life halfway," and she's definitely passed those words down to her children. 

"My kids inspire me to keep up the fight."

Valerie said she will never stop fighting for others because "there's a lot of work to be done."

Valerie sees there's a high demand for journalist to be the fastest. It's a race to see who can get the story out first, but Valerie doesn't think that's always possible with the internet around.

Valerie believes "credibility is way more important than being first."

Although times have changed, Valerie knows there's still a need for journalism.

"Being a journalist is not an easy job, but I don't think there's a better job in the world."