13 fascinating facts about Jerad Giottonini:

1. I worked in Shenzhen, China for a year teaching English to primary school students.
2. I can speak “survival” Mandarin Chinese.
3. I’ve walked on the Great Wall of China.
4. I spent the day riding a bike around Angkor Watt in Cambodia (think Tomb Raider with Angelina Jolie).
5. I have also ridden an elephant.
6. I’ve played with baby tigers.
7. I have backpacked through most of Southeast Asia.
8. I can’t whistle.
9. I’ve never missed a flight.
10. I went skydiving on my 21st birthday.
11. I ate a scorpion in Thailand, it tasted like bacon.
12. I’ve seen both Elton John and Stevie Wonder in concert.
13. I’ve watched a world series baseball game at AT&T Park in San Francisco.

Before calling Central Iowa home Jerad was a one-man-band reporter for the NBC affiliate in Missoula, Montana. He wore multiple hats in Montana — reporting, weather anchoring and producing.

In Western Montana Jerad covered wildfires, active-shooter situations and added to the station’s live coverage when Democratic Presidential Nominee Bernie Sanders visited Missoula.

Prior to that, Jerad was a technical recruiter in the heart of Silicon Valley. He was born and raised in Northern California and received his Bachelor of Arts in Broadcast Journalism. He graduated from San Francisco State University in the fall of 2012.

While attending SFSU, Jerad reported, anchored and produced the university’s broadcast, “State of Events.” He also interned at ABC 7 News and KTVU Fox 2 News in the SF Bay Area.

In his free time Jerad likes to go on hikes, cook and travel to new places.

If you have any story ideas or must-see places in Iowa, send them his way.

Recent Articles
  • Upcoming DSM Events Expected to Add Millions to Iowa Economy

    DES MOINES, Iowa  —  Catch Des Moines estimates $4 million will be pumped into the state’s economy this month. The reasons for the extra money are two local events happening next weekend: the Iowa Pork Congress and the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival. Catch Des Moines estimates both events will bring in a combined 8,000 people. For some, this will be their first time in Iowa. “What we hope they see is what a cool place it is here, what a […]

  • Hotel Pattee Sold For $2.5 Million

    PERRY, Iowa  —  The historic Hotel Pattee in Perry is now under new ownership. St. Louis residents Tom and Vicki Maxwell bought the hotel after it was on the market for nearly a year. Jay Hartz, the previous owner, sold the hotel for personal reasons including health concerns, not because of bad business. The price tag on the 40-room hotel was just less than $2.5 million. The Maxwells say they are excited to work in Perry. “I haven’t met people this genuine in a […]

  • Closing Statements Underway in Abraham Roberts Murder Trial

    DES MOINES, Iowa—Closing statements began shortly before noon Tuesday in Abraham Roberts’ first degree murder trial. Roberts is the Johnston man accused of shooting girlfriend Agnes Yarlee to death last April. Defense Attorneys tried to strike testimony from Agnes Yarlee’s 79-year-old mother, on the grounds of lack of competency.  The judge denied that request. The defense says the shooting was a crime of passion. Roberts testified he did not know how Yarlee was shot, or how he ended up trying to […]

  • Iowa Family From El Salvador Fears Deportation

    PERRY, Iowa  —  People from El Salvador who have been living in the U.S. since 2001 on a temporary protected status must now establish permanent residency or leave the country. Yandi Barco lives in Perry, and her family owns a Salvadoran restaurant called El Buen Gusto. “Hopefully we don’t leave our restaurant. We’ve been here for almost 10 years and my parents really want to stay here,” Barco said. For some Salvadorans, leaving home could soon become a reality because […]

  • WWII Veteran Receives Medals 70 Years Later

    NEWTON, Iowa  —  A Newton family likely didn’t pay much attention to the falling snow on Sunday, as they had a more important and meaningful reason to head inside the Jasper County Office of Veterans Affairs. Corporal Kenneth Arthur is a WWII veteran from Newton. “I was in artillery to start with, that’s what I had training for was artillery. We went aboard the USS Iowa and the USS Missouri and shot the big guns, showed the Navy how to shoot […]

  • Drake’s Hometown Heroes Event Recognizes Members in Blue

    DES MOINES, Iowa  —  The Knapp Center was packed with Drake Bulldog fans on Saturday as they watched the men’s basketball team take on Evansville. More than 100 local service members were invited to the game as part of Drake University’s annual Hometown Heroes event. “With the rash of officer involved shootings and we know the stresses they’re under, as well our firefighters, first responders, and military,” said Ty Patton a Drake spokesman. “We felt like we needed to show […]

  • Abraham Roberts Takes Stand in Own Murder Trial

    POLK COUNTY, Iowa  —  In Polk County court on Friday, Abraham Roberts took to the stand in his own first degree murder trial. Roberts is charged with the shooting death of his girlfriend Agnes Yarlee last April. On Friday, when Roberts took the stand, the courtroom was filled with Yarlee’s loved ones, who shed tears at times during the testimony. “At that time I had a full grip of the gun, and I was trying to keep our body away […]

  • New Medicaid Director Talks Plans for 2018

    DES MOINES, Iowa  —  The 2018 Iowa legislative session is now underway, and one of the hot budget issues at the Capitol this year is the state’s Medicaid program. Last week, Governor Reynolds said she has no interest in changing paths from privatized management, but the top Democrat in the House said on Monday that his party will push for change. The governor is hoping a new Medicaid director, who’s already been on the job for one month, will fix the […]

  • Bridal Shop Fire Leaves Woman Without Wedding Dress

    OTTUMWA, Iowa  —  A fire in downtown Ottumwa destroyed the historic Benson Building, which housed The Bridal Cottage. On Sunday night, people with wedding and prom dresses on hold at the business are left wondering if they’ll get their money back or receive a new dress. Kristen Adam, one of these customers, is scrambling to find a new dress just months before she says “I do.” “My first reaction is, ‘oh my gosh, my dress and my veil are in […]

  • New Commander Leading Wing of Iowa Air National Guard

    DES MOINES, Iowa  —  The new Iowa Air National Guard commander for the 132nd Wing in Des Moines is the first of his kind. Commander Mark Chidley is the first non-rated commander there, and his fellow service-members say he’s the perfect one for the job. Dozens of people gathered to watch Chidley become the new commander on Saturday. “Top commander here, over 900 personnel assigned to the wing, and responsibility for making sure  making sure that all of our missions are completely and […]

  • Controversy Over Land for New Warren County Jail

    INDIANOLA, Iowa  —  Plans to build a new jail in Warren County are causing controversy. One county supervisor is accusing the other two of backroom negotiations and an agreement to pay an inflated price for the land needed for the new jail. The land being considered is 18-20 acres near 17th Avenue in Indianola, called the Friestad Family Limited Property. Supervisor Dean Yordi has already reached an agreement to buy the land for $28,000 per acre.  After learning of the tentative […]

  • Metro Furnace Repairmen Working Double Duty

    DES MOINES, Iowa  —  Over a week of fighting subzero temperatures is more than many furnaces have been able to handle in central Iowa. Furnace repairmen are now working nearly around the clock to get furnaces firing again. Des Moines resident Michael Harden’s thermometer reads 63 degrees. “Well I woke up in the middle of the night on New Year’s Day at 3:30 in the morning and it was cold. The furnace decided to stop working for a while,” Harden […]