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13 Fascinating Facts about Jodi Whitworth:
•I’ve never eaten a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Call me un-American.
•I have a pretty cool family. Both my brother and I are adopted. He’s adopted from Seoul, Korea. I’m adopted from Chicago. And my parents’ names are Dick and Jayne.
•I was a cheerleader all four years in high school. Yes, cheerleading is a sport.
•Favorite movie: What About Bob. I still laugh at all the same parts and can quote every line.
•I am notorious for making funny faces.
•I love to dance.
•Dream vacation destination: Tokyo, Beijing or Seoul. I have a recent love of Asian culture. I blame the “Gangnam Style” song.
•I ran track for over 10 years. I hold several records at my high school and college. Oddly enough, I don’t even like running but I thrive on competition!
•I’m a true Midwestern girl. I’ve lived in Illinois, Iowa, and Minnesota and I still hate the winters.
•I am a die – hard Fighting Illini fan. ILL – INI!
•I’m deathly afraid of spiders. I can hardly even read the book Charlotte’s Web.
•I was Ankeny High School’s first African American homecoming queen in 2008.
•Only two professions run in my family: broadcasting and the funeral home business. I contemplated studying mortuary science in college.

Multimedia Journalist, Jodi Whitworth, joined the Channel 13 news team in January of 2013 after graduating from Northwestern College in Saint Paul, Minnesota with a degree in Electronic Media Communications. While in college she had valuable experiences interning with news teams at WCIA in Champaign, IL, KSTP in Saint Paul, Minnesota. Her first internship experience was at WHO-HD. It was here where she learned she had a passion for journalism.

Jodi served in an active role on her campus TV station, Eagle 7 News for several semesters. She also was the 2012 recipient of the Alliance for Women in Media: Diamond Award Diversity Scholarship and is a member of the National Communication Association Honor’s Society: Lambda Phi Eta. She’s even taken her journalism skills overseas. In 2012 she traveled to Belize to teach a media seminar to local television and radio stations.

Having gone to Ankeny High School, Jodi is no stranger to Des Moines. She and her family moved to the Twin Cities after her high school graduation, but is excited to be back amongst the friendly folks of Iowa. Jodi covers a wide variety of stories and would love to hear from viewers. You can contact her by email at, “Like” her on Facebook or, follow her on Twitter @jlwhit09.

Recent Articles
  • $22 Million Waukee Movie Theater Focuses on Comfort and Amenities

    WAUKEE, Iowa — In a matter of 12 months, a locally owned theater company plans to turn a vacant lot between Northeast Westgate Drive and Northeast Dartmoore Drive in Waukee into a 15–screen multiplex movie theater. On Wednesday, city leaders and Fridley Theaters celebrated the work already being done on the property. The Palms will feature 15 screens, an 85-foot-wide IMAX screen, heated and reclining seats as well as in – theater dining service. The theaters operation director, Russell Vannorsdel, […]

  • Charred Urbandale Condo Building Did Not Have Fire Sprinklers

    URBANDALE, Iowa  —  Fire investigators say the Plumwood Terrace condos didn’t stand a chance once they caught fire on Monday afternoon. The building did not have a sprinkler system. “One of the things we always advocate for is fire sprinklers. One of the things we hear people say is, ‘we don’t want the damage from a fire sprinkler,’” says Urbandale Fire Chief Jerry Holt. “This is a great example that if this building had a fire sprinkler it would have […]

  • West Des Moines Bar Faces Sexual Harassment Lawsuit

    WEST DES MOINES, Iowa  —  A popular bar in West Des Moines is being sued for sexual harassment and retaliation after two teenage sisters say they were harassed and then punished for reporting it to superiors. Mary Feuerhelm says her two daughters, Kennedy and Sydney, are scarred for life after working at Wellman’s Pub and Patio. The teens were hired as table runners in August and September of 2016.  A lawsuit claims they quickly became targets for harassment. “It breaks […]

  • Des Moines Fire Department Responds to Record Number of Calls in 2017

    DES MOINES, Iowa  —  This has been an unprecedented year for both local and statewide firefighters. Crews are dealing with record-breaking statistics and calls for service. “We’re seeing about a 4.5% increase each year over the last several years in call volumes,” says Lieutenant Joe Van Haalen, president of the IAFF #4 Union. The union says the department has responded to roughly 25,400 medic and fire calls in 2017. Last year, crews responded to 24,270. The reason? Van Haalen says […]

  • Marshalltown Teacher Awarded Golden Apple

    MARSHALLTOWN, Iowa  —  In the classroom, English teacher Kathi Hale means business, but she also doesn’t take herself too seriously. At Marshalltown High School’s recent pep rally, Hale led the students in the fight song. It’s evident that she bleeds bobcat blue and red, and her students here are her life. “I believe anyone can be educated, and it’s just up to me find the kid to unlock that window or door to their desire to learn because I think […]

  • Merry Christmas Nate Campaign Nears Completion

    DES MOINES, Iowa  —  A central Iowa man is asking for a quarter of a million dollars for Christmas, not for himself but for victims of human trafficking. Nate Beaird launched his Merry Christmas Nate campaign last month. His goal is to raise $750,000 by the end of the year to create a safe house and rehabilitation center in Des Moines for victims. So far, Beaird has raised slightly more than $10,000. He says while the safe house isn’t fully-funded, […]

  • Parking Lot Altercation Leads to Man Pulling Out Pistol

    WEST DES MOINES, Iowa  —  What started as a day of holiday shopping almost landed a customer behind bars. On Saturday afternoon, West Des Moines police responded to the Fresh Thyme Market in the 2900 block of University Avenue on reports of a man brandishing a weapon. Police say the man was backing out of a parking spot and almost hit a woman with his car. The woman and her husband began yelling at the driver and banging on his […]

  • Von Maur to Stay at Valley West Mall Despite Rumors, Other Stores at Risk of Closing

    WEST DES MOINES, Iowa — A flagship store at Valley West Mall is putting rumors about its departure to rest. Von Maur officials say it has no plans of leaving the mall due to its success there. The store’s chief operating officer says, the Valley West Mall location is one of the most successful stores in the company. This comes after the Gap announced it will be closing both its Gap and Baby Gap stores at the mall. The company […]

  • Owners Plan to Rebuild After Fire Destroys Plaza Lanes

    DES MOINES, Iowa  —  A massive fire destroyed a 60-year-old north side landmark in a matter of minutes. Firefighters were called to  Plaza Lanes just after 5 a.m. on Monday morning after a passerby noticed smoke coming from the building. When crews arrived on scene, the building was engulfed in flames. Randy Thompson, owner of Plaza Lanes, calls the damage devastating. “It was surreal. This morning when we got here, the flames were coming out of the roof. It was […]

  • East Village Hair Salon in the Spirit of Giving

    DES MOINES, Iowa  —  In the holiday season of giving, stylists at a local hair salon say by helping others, they also receive gifts in return. “This is just amazing. Earlier I was having a private moment and feeling thankful, thankful that this could happen,” says Alicia, Koster, owner of Aviva Salon. On Sunday, the salon offered free haircuts to anyone in need. Several hair stylists from across the metro volunteered their time to help pamper guests. Koster say the […]

  • Lego League Competition Helps Build Character

    JOHNSTON, Iowa  —  More than one 100 students across central Iowa showed off their science, technology, engineering, and math skills on Sunday at Johnston High School. It was part of the First Lego League regional qualifying competition. The program is for students in kindergarten through 12th grade. Teams are required to build robotic Lego machines to perform tasks, and then are judged on how well their robot preforms. Organizers say the program is about more than just Legos. “They start […]

  • Proposal Could Lead to Increase in State Cigarette Sales Tax

    DES MOINES, Iowa — This week, the American Heart Association proposed lawmakers raise the state’s cigarette tax from a $1.36 to $2.86 per pack, a more than double increase. Advocates say the increase would generate more than $106 million in revenue and save lives. “We believe in the stats that we have that 19, 000 youths will never start smoking if this bill is passed we also believe that 22,000 Iowa adults would quit if this bill was passed,” says […]