Ronelle Williams - KSN 3

Where were you working before Wichita? KCTV5, Kansas City market

How have you survived the industry? Keep learning, there’s no time to slow down. You’ve got to keep your mind sharp and one step ahead of everyone/everything else.

Why did you choose to go into meteorology? It’s always been a passion of mine since my earliest years of grade school.

What’s the hardest part of your job? Probably waking up at 12am. That midnight alarm always stings no matter how much sleep you get.

What’s the easiest part of your job? Being a source of information. Whenever a coworker asks where the greatest threat of severe weather will be or a viewer asks us to identify a cloud, we’ve always got an answer.

What do you like most about the Wichita market/weather? Since we cover 77 counties, the weather is rarely dull. I’ve given forecasts where there are blizzard warnings and a threat of tornadoes all in the same day.

What is something that you want to do professionally that you haven’t done already? Showing a live feed of a tornado from the field.

Tell us about your most memorable storm. The March 2017 Oak Grove tornado in Missouri. I was on the west side of the storm, surveying damage in towns as it passed through. Once the storm reached Oak Grove there was a textbook radar signature (velocity couplet) that suggested strong rotation. I was eventually dispatched to the scene where a tornado tore through the city. It looked like a warzone and I had never seen anything like that before. What made it worse is that this all happened after sundown while it was dark. The tornado was rated an EF-3 with 150 mph winds.

What’s next after Wichita? Honestly, I don’t know. I didn’t think I’d be in this position and didn’t even want to go the broadcast television route after graduating college. That’s another story though. We’ll see.

What’s the toughest challenge for African Americans looking to make it in this industry? I wouldn’t say there’s a challenge for African Americans to make it, but that there aren’t enough. This is why I love going to schools to encourage and inspire students. You never know who’s listening and watching.

How do you feel about being approached when you are in public? Selfies? Autographs? It was a little strange to me at first but I’m used to it now. I worked in retail for about 6 years before getting into all of this so the only time someone asked me something was if they were looking for an item. But I feel like I’m an outgoing person. If I’m shopping, at church, or even around my neighborhood, I love sharing a quick convo with our viewers.

How do you feel about tornadoes? I believe in balance when it comes to tornadoes. What I mean is, they’re obviously fascinating but you have to be careful when getting excited about them because they’re still destructive and have taken many lives.

Are you married? Have children? Not married, no children.

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