At 4:45 a.m., Erica Hill is in the CNN studio. A 5:15 a.m. show meeting follows, then makeup at 6 a.m. After conferring with producers, Hill goes on-air as anchor. Energized and focused, she deftly juggles reporters and commentary from guests during her broadcast.
This is a fairly typical schedule, but as lead fill-in anchor and national correspondent, every day can bring something new for Hill. She might be in Kenya, reporting from a refugee camp. Or covering a terrorist attack in Paris. Or waking in her Westchester home, working out on her bike and heading into her Manhattan studio, predawn. Hill has interviewed many high-profile subjects, but says she’s “drawn to people you haven’t heard of but who inspire us all in their daily lives.”
“The hostility inspires me to continue to do my job the way I’ve always done it, focused on fact and accuracy and getting it right.”
She moved to Westchester from New York City in 2012, dragging her feet, along with her 85-pound dog. Now Hill, her husband, and two school-age boys live in lower Westchester and are converts. “We love our community and we love the friends we’ve made,” Hill says.
She takes pride in her work at CNN, a network that has frequently drawn the ire of President Trump, who has labeled it “fake news” and “garbage journalism.” Hill’s response: “The hostility inspires me to continue to do my job the way I’ve always done it, focused on fact and accuracy and getting it right.”
Still, the attacks on the press concern her. “American people need to know what is happening. We can’t lose sight of how important it is to hold people accountable,” she says. The loss of decorum — on all sides — is sad, Hill says, and she tries to set a better example “so I can look my kids in the eye.”