There's a coffee mug on my desk - being used as a pen holder because I don't drink coffee - that says, "Life takes you to unexpected places. Love brings you home." In 2006, after graduating from the University of Arizona (#BearDown), I was lucky to land a job at KGMB9 here in Honolulu. As a Kauai girl and a proud product of this state, it was a dream opportunity to be able to come home and serve these special communities that I cared about so much. For more than three years, I worked as both a producer and general assignment reporter covering crime, business, government, severe weather, even movie premieres - I loved every minute of it. Life would then take me all the way across the country to Washington, D.C. where I served as press secretary for U.S. Representative Colleen Hanabusa for two terms. It was an amazing time to be on Capitol Hill - Hawaii-born President Barack Obama in the White House, Hawaii Senators Daniel Inouye and Daniel Akaka in the U.S. Senate, and just so much aloha to be found in our nation's capital. Love would eventually bring me back home in 2014. My dad - who was my best friend - was diagnosed with terminal cancer. The decision to move back to Hawaii to care for him was easy. Family first. Always. Before deciding to return to TV news, I was working in public relations at Anthology Marketing Group, one of the state's top communications firms. Much like news, it gave me the opportunity to delve into various industries and community issues, and work with the media to share these important stories. Joining the Hawaii News Now team truly feels like a homecoming and I couldn't be more excited. Thank you for putting your trust in us and allowing us into your homes night after night.