Tuesday, December 27, 2011

My Year in Review As a NYC Reporter


Being a reporter in the Big Apple has its share of heartbreaking stories, interesting interviews and monumental moments.

In the year 2011, I was able to cover historical same-sex weddings, including one officiated by Mayor Bloomberg at Gracie Mansion.

I followed the story of 17-year-old Afrika Owes, once a prep school standout who garnered the front page of the Daily News when she was busted running guns for a Harlem street gang. She was later bailed out by the prominent Abyssinian Baptist Church.

I revealed the identity of afro-wearing baby on the cover of the Notorious B.I.G. 'Ready to Die' album - and to the surprise of many, the baby had no relation to the late Christopher Wallace.

I interviewed celebrities including Jay-Z, Stevie Wonder, Dionne Warwick, T.I., Gayle King, Don Lemon, Kelly Rowland, Jim Jones, J.Cole, Sheryl Lee Ralph, Kangol Kid, Consequence and Keith Sweat.

I also followed local heroes X Factor rap phenom Astro and Christian Lopez, the Yankee fan who caught Derek Jeter's 3,000th hit. I even interviewed Newark Mayor Cory Booker about his use of Twitter in the midst of the Anthony Weiner photo scandal.

I covered the funerals of rap legend Heavy D, the iconic singer/songwriter Nick Ashford, poet/musician Gil Scott-Heron and even the homecoming for Clarice Taylor, best known for being Bill Cosby's TV mom.

Oh yeah, I also sat outside waiting for a glimpse of Dominique Strauss-Kahn. (blah)

I watched exhausted runners cross the finish line at the ING NYC Marathon. I attended one of the many ceremonies around the city remembering 10 years since 9/11. I saw a Harlem community mourn a beloved high school basketball player who was senselessly gunned down in a housing project.

And the year ended covering one of the worst tragedies that I've seen since becoming a journalist, three children and their grandparents were killed in a horrible Christmas morning house fire in Stamford, Ct.

Here's a look at my top 10 stories of the year (that I covered):

10. Jay-Z talks baby, Carnegie concert.

9. Stevie Wonder inducted into Apollo HOF.

8. Last Dragon co-stars reunite for film.

7. Cory Booker talks Twitter.
6. Harlem flower shop wilting in debt.

5. Rice High School Closes.

click the names above for the articles

3. Same-Sex Marriage.

2. Meet the B.I.G. Baby.

1. Afrika Owes.