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13 fascinating facts about Erin Kiernan:
• I am an only child.
• I could save your life – I know CPR.
• I have extraordinarily long toes. I can pick things up with them.
• My husband proposed to me on St. Patrick's Day. We got married in the Madison County Church visited by Pope John Paul in 1979. My husband grew up there and was blessed by John Paul during the visit.
• I was storm chasing more than a decade ago and an anchor sent me straight into a developing tornado.
• As a child I had a pet rabbit and a pet chicken. My Grandpa Gene once said, "It's a good thing Erin didn't ask for an elephant!"
• I played the piano and the clarinet as a kid and can't play either now.
• I have a Voodoo kit on my desk (a gift from Sonya Heitshusen).
• I have a tattoo and a piercing and wish I'd never gotten either. (Why is your mother always right about these things?)
• I had a retainer for a couple of weeks in grade school before "accidentally" throwing it away during hot lunch. Consequently, I still have an overbite.
• In the middle of an interview, Steve Miller serenaded me with "…... really like your peaches, wanna shake your treeeeeee...."
• My dad still sometimes calls me "The Dawes County Styler" because I won first place in a Dawes County, Nebraska 4-H modeling contest.
• My birth was delayed because my mother went into labor during a Nebraska football game.

Erin Kiernan was a Channel 13 intern and part-time reporter during college and rejoined the team in June 2005 to play a major role in the station's ongoing success. In June 2006, Erin started anchoring the 5, 6 and 10 o'clock newscasts.

In addition to anchoring, Erin has written and produced many of the station's investigative and "13 Cares" reports and plays an active role in the daily news process.

The recipient of several regional Edward R. Murrow Awards for her reporting work, Erin earned a National Edward R. Murrow Award in 2012 with photojournalists Brandon McCauley and Randy Schumacher for a story about Iowan Mark Block overcoming impossible odds to climb Sears Tower in Chicago. Erin has also received regional Emmy Awards in the feature, consumer and instructional categories. In 2008, the Iowa Commission of Persons with Disabilities chose Erin to receive its Media Award following special reports she produced on Iowans with disabilities.

Erin previously anchored the weekend news at KCCI, where she started in 1998. In addition to anchoring, she became known for her award-winning investigative work and special series pieces. In Spring 2004, she received a regional Edward R. Murrow award for her two-part series on date-rape drugs. In 2000, she also received a regional Murrow Award for her investigative series "True Colors," which focused on racism at bars in the Des Moines metro area. She has also done investigative series reports on identity theft, sex offenders, arson, ecstasy, meth and unlicensed drivers.

Erin graduated from Drake University with a degree in broadcast journalism. While attending school, she worked as a part-time reporter at Channel 13 News. Next, she worked for WOI-TV as a reporter and photographer.

Born and raised in Chadron, Nebraska, she says her career in broadcasting really started when she imitated television news reporters while dressing up in her mother's clothes as a child.

Erin is very involved in our community. She volunteers for various non-profits and teaches fitness classes at the YMCA. During the summer Erin can be found outside biking and as a Nebraska native, she gets "Big Red" fever during the football season. She is also a voracious reader and loves watching movies with her husband, Michael and crazy old cat, Marley.


Recent Articles
  • gym towel

    WEEKLY WORKOUT: Germs At The Gym

    We do it in an effort to get and stay healthy, so make sure exercise is all you’re getting at the gym. “Most workout centers have the disinfectant,” says Nurse Sandy Peno, “use those before you work out because you don’t know if the person before you cleaned it down.” And Nurse Peno says – you don’t know what that person might be carrying. From the flu and the common cold to nasty stuff like staph and e. coli, it […]

  • i can run

    13 CARES: From ‘I Can’t’ To ‘I Can!’

    This is the time of year when a lot of us shove the running shoes to the back of the closet. This group might make you keep them out, or buy them for the first time – and put more miles on them than you ever thought possible. The members greet each other like old friends, but most of them have only known each other for a few months. Their ages, jobs and hobbies run the gamut but they have […]

  • Erin Off Camera

    ERIN OFF CAMERA: Gratitude

    This is the one week of the year we spend a lot of time talking about what we’re thankful for. It’s one of the many reasons I love Thanksgiving.  It’s also why it makes me so sad that many stores are now open for business on the holiday. If you sit quietly for just a few minutes and think about the things for which you are truly grateful, did any of them come in a box or wrapped in a […]

  • EEK exhausted

    ERIN OFF CAMERA: You’ve Got Grit, Kid

    I don’t know that I’ve ever been so happy to make it to a Friday. This picture of me bent over, sucking air sums up so much about the past several months. When Sonya and I started this adventure back in June, we really had no idea what we were getting into.  All we knew was that the Urbandale Fire Department wanted personal trainer Angie Gallagher to create a workout program to help women pass the physical test for firefighter […]

  • fire

    TRIAL BY FIRE: Into The Fire & Back To The Test

    Captain Linda Frangenberg says it’s an exciting job, but she also knows it’s a dangerous job. “I was involved in an incident where we had a porch roof collapse and I was trapped, briefly. You know, it stops you for a minute and it makes you think, you know life is pretty short.” Captain Frangenberg will never forget that call, and we’ll never forget going inside a burning building. The gear was the only barrier between us and the fire […]

  • TRIAL BY FIRE: Different Departments, Different Tests

    Strength, stamina and speed are just some of the physical requirements for being a firefighter.  As Urbandale Chief Jerry Holt puts it, “they go from zero sixty just like that and they have to be able to perform at a high level.” That’s why there’s widespread support for gender-neutral testing in the fire service. But the tests themselves can vary wildly from department to department. In Urbandale, candidates have to complete five stations. Turning on a hydrant is first, followed […]

  • TRIAL BY FIRE: Female Pioneers

    Taking the Urbandale Fire Department candidate test is one of the most challenging things we’ve ever done.  It’s literally cost us blood, sweat and tears.  We went through it because the department wants more women in its ranks.  That’s why Chief Jerry Holt asked personal trainer Angie Gallagher to create an exercise program to improve our chances. Mary Davis passed the Des Moines test and was the first woman hired in 1982.  She had no idea she’d be breaking new […]

  • WEEKLY WORKOUT: Resistance Training For Seniors

    As we age, we lose muscle mass, which is one reason personal trainer, Irene McCormick says resistance training is key. “Resistance training is what the research is pointing to as one of the most effective ways to overcome a lot of the things that occur during the aging process.” Those things include loss of brain function. “So we’re not able to process information as quickly and efficiently,” says McCormick.  “Unfortunately, people don’t realize that you can halt that, you can […]

  • Erin Off Camera

    ERIN OFF CAMERA: Thumb Update

    Oh friends, you crack me up. My previous blog post is easily the most read and commented on thing I’ve ever posted.  I love that you love the stories and pictures that make you say, “Ewwwwww!” and “What the heck?!?!?!” So here’s the latest… You’ll remember that this is what my thumb looked like right after Dr. Cherny cut out all of the infected tissue and the mysterious “foreign objects”. After just a few hydrotherapy treatments with Erika, things started […]

  • WEEKLY WORKOUT: Fundraising Through Tae Kwon Do

    Many kids and their parents know the benefits of martial arts. But at one central Iowa school there`s an extra lesson being taught. Norman Wrigley started studying martial arts in the 1990s. In 2010, he landed in Iowa and started East Coast Tae Kwon Do. “There`s so much with any martial art; discipline, focus, control, concentration,” says Wrigley. They`re the qualities every instructor tries to instill in students but here, there`s one more. “As a school, we wanted to be […]

  • workout

    WEEKLY WORKOUT: 8 Weeks To Wellness

    It’s a program that only requires three and a half hours per week, and the people who’ve tried it say it is life changing, maybe even lifesaving. The actual workout isn’t any different from many you’ve seen us do before, but it’s just one part of this program. At Dr. Wes Nyberg’s office, “8 Weeks to Wellness” has a foundation in chiropractic care. “We could adjust you every day,” Dr. Wes explains, “but if you’re not exercising, getting massage or […]

  • Erin Off Camera

    ERIN OFF CAMERA: Warning…Graphic Images

    I’m going to fill the top of this post with lots of warnings. Lots…. And lots… And lots of warnings. If you like gross, weird, mysterious medical stuff you will love the following photos. If you have a weak stomach and the tiniest bit of blood bothers you – don’t continue reading (or looking). I have no idea what I did to cause this.    I don’t remember doing something and thinking, “Ouch!”  – like getting a paper cut or a […]

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