This summer we are thrilled to feature some local moms who are thinking outside the box and making a difference in our community through the businesses they own, organizations they are involved with, and work they do. Check out the rest of the series and read profiles from previous years here.
Jodi Long is a reporter and anchor for WHO Today in Iowa. She and her husband Ra Shaan have one son, Bishop Percy Long.
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your family
I’ve been married to my husband, Ra Shaan for 2.5 years. We met after someone I interviewed for a WHO13 news story introduced us. As they say the rest is history. In December of 2019 welcomed our first child, Bishop Percy.
What do you consider the biggest challenge of motherhood to be? Biggest joy?
I think change is both the biggest challenge and biggest joy. I love a good schedule and knowing what’s next. Every time I think I have Bishop “figured out” something either big or small will change and we have to re-calibrate. But change, always yields something new and good. Watching Bishop grow up and learn new things is so rewarding. What my husband and I have come to focus on is embracing, not enjoying (because I think it’s unrealistic to love EVERY single moment) because it won’t last forever.
Tell us about your job and how you got into news
I’m not sure if there was a huge defining moment for me as to how I got drawn into news other than I’ve always loved to talk and be in the know. After studying Electronic Media Communications at The University of Northwestern St. Paul in St. Paul, Minnesota, I began my career at WHO 13 as a multimedia journalist in 2013 and worked my way up from reporter to weekend anchor and now currently, the co-anchor of Today in Iowa weekdays from 4:30 a.m. – 7 a.m. The hours take some getting used to but the fast-paced, ever-changing desire to inform others is addicting and rewarding.
What’s the best part about your job?
Making connections and meeting new people. Many of the people I’ve interviewed over the last seven years remind me there is are still good people in the world despite some of the bad news and bad people I’m forced to cover. It’s an indescribable feeling for people who have gone through the worst or maybe best thing in their lives welcome you into their home and entrust you with their stories. It’s a big responsibility but it’s what keeps me going.
What’s the hardest part about your job?
News never stops. There is always something new. Detaching from it all is hard. When you choose too, you feel guilty for it but if you don’t it can easily consume you. Being a wife and mom now I intentionally choose to unplug for my own mental wellbeing and to be more intentional with my family.
Around Des Moines
How are you involved in the community?
My husband and I attend Eternity Church in Clive.
Favorite spot to go for a drink
How/where do you relax?
Watching mindless reality TV like “Married to Medicine”, “The Real Housewives”, and “Below Deck” does wonders for my mental space.
What’s your favorite book, show, or podcast?
I don’t have a favorite book but one I completed most recently was certainly one I would read again is “Becoming” by Michelle Obama.
What are 3 words to describe you?
Engaging, outgoing, and passionate
If your life had a hashtag, what would it be?
#FaithandFamily … it’s all you really have in life!
Family photo courtesy of Kate Vanderloo Photography.
Know a Des Moines mom we should feature? Let us know! Email [email protected] with details and we will be in touch.