Always look for a fresh way to tell a story and always keep the digital world in mind. OTT is the future when it comes to on-demand programming. Everyone has to get on-board.
Jennifer Delgado grew up in St. Louis, Missouri. She received her B.A. in Media Communications from Webster University and went on to earn her B.S. in Geosciences with a concentration in Broadcast Meteorology.
Beginning her career in 2006, Jennifer Delgado worked for WTVR-TV in Richmond, Virginia, as a morning and noon meteorologist. She began working at CNN International in Atlanta, Georgia, in 2008 as a primary meteorologist and also acted as a fill-in meteorologist on all CNN networks. She won a Peabody Award in 2010 for CNN’s coverage on the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
In 2013, Delgado joined The Weather Channel and became one of the co-hosts of AMHQ morning show. In this role, she anchored continuous coverage of breaking weather and news events, including live interviews with state and national officials. She was also the fill-in co-host of the Wake-Up with Al Roker morning show in New York.
In 2017, Jennifer Delgado started filling-in as a meteorologist/anchor for WXIA-TV. She presented weathercasts in addition to producing weathercasts for radio, web and the 24-hour weather channel.
During this time, Jennifer Delgado was unfortunately diagnosed with a rare blood cancer. Fighting for her life became her full-time job. She endured months of chemotherapy treatment and eventually received a life-saving stem cell transplant. Since the transplant, Jennifer has been receiving treatment at the Emory Winship Cancer Institute. This experience has led Jennifer to become an advocate for blood cancer awareness. She is also volunteering her time with “Happy Tails Pet Therapy” in Atlanta, Georgia, through which she takes her dogs to visit cancer patients in the hospital.
Where did the idea for your company come from?
I’m from Missouri and we had so many different weather extremes. Missouri has it all when it comes to weather: tornadoes, hailstorms, and flooding that would last for weeks. During the winter, we would get major ice, snowstorms, and the occasional blizzard. I’m sure that’s where my passion for the weather began. How can you not be fascinated by all that!
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
Before my cancer, my typical workday would start by checking my phone for news and Twitter for story ideas. Then I would check out the National Weather Service and look at weather data like satellites and weather models. Basically, I would study the weather and who was being affected the most. I’m looking for weather extremes. Even now, I’m still doing it because it’s my passion.
How do you bring ideas to life?
I’m always brainstorming and looking for ways to integrate my ideas. I am passionate about weather, blood cancer awareness, and being a responsible pet owner. I am trying to figure out how I can bridge those passions together.
What’s one trend that excites you?
One trend that excites me is connecting with people on social media. Despite it being “the devil,” one thing that I like about it is that when you’re first diagnosed with cancer, you can go on Instagram or Twitter and reach out to others battling it too. You make these connections, and they become friends; people who care about you and that you care about. Instagram has been a way for me to find other people who have the same type of blood cancer as me. It gave me a place to talk to about what I’m going through, how I’m feeling, and people who can understand and relate to it.
I’m really fascinated by the O.T.T (over-the-top) digital streaming. When I got into television, it was still very focused on traditional TV and web content. Now everyone is streaming, and the millennials will look at you like you’re crazy when you say you have a TV.
I really love seeing so many young women and minorities studying and entering the stem field. My parents were very big into science so that influenced me a lot. We definitely need more engineers and scientists to work on current and future problems, especially when it comes to climate.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
I’m continually looking for different ways to tell the weather. You should know what your weather story is going to be before you walk into the studio. Anyone can get the temperatures off their phone. The last couple of years we have had major weather events: hurricanes, 100 year floods, and tornado outbreaks. People are paying attention and saying what is going on? They are turning to us now more than ever for answers, explanations, and how to help make environmental changes.
What advice would you give your younger self?
I am proud to be a meteorologist, but I often wish I was a seismologist as well. When you’re on TV and covering the weather, people will ask you about earthquakes, or they come to you when something’s happening, such as a tsunami. It’s also another passion of mine. So, I would tell a younger Jennifer Delgado to pursue a double degree in meteorology and seismology.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
I can tell you Atlantans always complain about how humid Atlanta is during the summer. I don’t agree and actually find the weather quite pleasant. I’m from the Midwest and you don’t know humidity until you feel summer dewpoints in the 70s or even 80s. A lot of people don’t know about corn sweat! The technical term is evapotranspiration and farmers in the Midwest know it can crank up the heat index during the summer. Now I’m not saying Atlanta doesn’t get hot and humid, but it definitely doesn’t rank anywhere near the top 10 most humid cities. Sorry folks! By the way spring and summer are my favorite seasons.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
I try to advocate every day for the importance of women in STEM.
I really love seeing the recent influx of young women and minorities in the stem field. We definitely need more engineers and scientists to work on future problems especially when it comes to climate.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
I’m always educating myself on weather patterns happening internationally. I think that has always been one of my greatest strengths. I also try to remember to talk to the viewers as I would with my best friend. People want to relate to you.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
When I was diagnosed with cancer, I somehow ended up with two new Pomeranian puppies. One was returned to her agency. So, there I was with no immune system undergoing chemotherapy with five Pomeranians and a Yorkie! Needless to say, I was in over my head. Luckily my friend staged an intervention. The puppies all found great homes, but I felt like such a failure. My dogs were very happy to have their house back!
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
This one is hard for me because I believe I’m kind of a marketing genius. I love that show Shark Tank. It’s so important to first time entrepreneurs. I love Kickstarter and support any type of crowd funding. I strongly believe I am going to patent and invent something. Just wait and see!
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
I renewed my subscription to RadarScope. It’s an excellent weather app. It costs $99 for annual pro membership and it’s worth every penny. It’s one of my favorite apps.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?
I like Instagram and Twitter. I can reach out through them and meet a lot of people. Facebook, too. They enable me to reach out, make connections, and meet a lot of people going through the same situations as me.
RadarScope is an amazing weather tool every meteorologist should have. The app is easy to download and doesn’t take up much space on your phone. It can help even just weather enthusiasts track storms from their home or when they are traveling. It has so many great features and the annual subscription is reasonable.
Oh, I know it sounds old-school, but I love all the scan and fax iPhone apps. Sometimes you still need to fax!
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
The Weather Makers by Tim Flannery. There are three books in the series. They talk about global warming and climate change and predict the consequences humankind may see. “The Weather Makers is both an urgent warning and a call to arms, outlining the history of climate change, how it will unfold over the next century, and what we can do to prevent a cataclysmic future.” – BookBrowse.com.
What is your favorite quote?
“It is during our darkest moments that we must focus to see the light.” – Aristotle.
● Social media has many positives and is a great way for people dealing with an illness to connect with others. It’s also a great way to find out about new treatments and new trials.
● Always find a way to be creative in everything you do, even the simplest of tasks.
● Always look for a fresh way to tell a story and always keep the digital world in mind. OTT is the future when it comes to on-demand programming. Everyone has to get on-board.
Steve (Stefan) Junge hails from Germany and helps with the day-to-day publishing of interviews on IdeaMensch. While he and Mario don’t share a favorite soccer club, their enthusiasm to help entrepreneurs is a shared passion.