Hattie Kauffman became the first Native American to file a report on network news in February 1989, during her tenure at ABC's "Good Morning America." In her career as a broadcast journalist, she won four Emmy Awards. But Kauffman did not enter the world of television news for the glamour and the chance to meet the movers and shakers of the world. Kauffman was trying to survive, make a living and prove that she would not be defined by her past or circumstances.
The road to the top for Kauffman was not easy, and her new memoir "Falling Into Place" shares her tough upbringing at the Nez Perce Reservation, her parents' struggle with alcohol, her life in Seattle and a difficult divorce.
After a career of telling others' stories, Kauffman finally had the time and courage to tell the story she had always wanted to tell, her story. No longer under the spotlight of network television or on the road for weeks on end reporting, she was able to tell the story she had “been hiding for years.”
Kauffman describes the process of writing as “therapeutic,” and her memoir not only lifts the veil of her own history but also of her six siblings and her parents. Kauffman recalled writing a letter to her siblings to explain that this book was from her perspective, and she was telling the story as she saw it unfold. But the message is not that she had bad parents, rather an inspiring story to say to the world “look how we survived.”
In the end, Kauffman not only survived but thrived in the news business and revealed during her interview with IBTimesTV that it was strange to be the one interviewed. She admitted she’s much more comfortable asking the questions, as she has done with the world’s most famous politicians, Olympians, celebrities and Oscar winners.
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Now retired from the world of news, Kauffman is busy promoting her memoir, “Falling Into Place.” She said she is working on her second book, though she did not divulge the subject matter.