As an Emmy-winning meteorologist, mother of four, and avid marathon runner, Amy Freeze knows a thing or two about making it all work.
On the night of the awards ceremony where Freeze would receive her fourth Emmy – this time for Best Weather Anchor – she had a decision to make: an evening spent with distinguished journalism colleagues, or an evening wearing jeans and a t-shirt and cheering from the sidelines at a child’s soccer game. On this night, the choice was an easy one for Freeze.
“There is never real balance in life, but having the ability to recognize the priority of the moment is the only secret I know to making it all work,” said Freeze. “Every aspect of life surfaces as the priority at different times – family, work, church, personal time. Being able to recognize the priority at the time is a challenge, but if you can see it and do it, you will win every time.”
Freeze is a self-described “BYU baby.” Both of her parents are BYU graduates, so she grew up cheering for the “Blue and White.” It was only natural, then, that while working toward her Communications degree at BYU, she would become a cheerleader and eventually marry Cosmo the Cougar. Her first real-world journalism experience came as part of a study abroad in South Africa.
“It was during Nelson Mandela’s election. We spent time at the country’s newspaper agencies and I did an internship in Africa with Worldwide TV News,” Freeze said. “Then, during my first job as a writer at a TV station, I realized I could enterprise, write, and present stories. My last name caught the attention of my coworkers who encouraged me to try out weather storytelling. They said, ‘Freeze, you were born to do the weather!’”
Her first job in broadcasting was with KBYU Report and KBYU radio. It was during this time that she learned to shoot, write, edit, and package stories. After completing her Communications degree, she went on to earn a BS in Geosciences with an emphasis in Severe Weather from Mississippi State University, followed by a MS in Environmental Science degree from University of Pennsylvania.
To those who knew her as a budding journalism student, Freeze’s professional success was only a matter of time.
“If I had ever seen a natural for television, it was Amy Freeze,” said Dale Cressman, who was her BYU instructor and KBYU news director. “Color me unsurprised that she’s succeeded in the largest TV markets in the country.”
Freeze has worked in various markets across the country, including Portland, Oregon, Denver, Philadelphia, Chicago, and currently as Weekend Meteorologist with the number one affiliate in the country, WABC-TV in New York City. She says that there has been no shortage of excitement during her first year in New York.
“I was thrilled to receive an Emmy for my first year of work in New York City,” said Freeze. “We have had intense weather since I arrived, including Hurricane Irene, Hurricane Sandy, record flooding, extreme heat, historical blizzards, and everything in between.”
Besides the thrill of winning awards and tracking severe weather, there is something more driving Freeze’s passion for her work.
“This job is special. It allows for unique experiences and unusual opportunities. The best part is that doing a special job allows me to serve others in a way that motivates me to do my best. When I do my job well, it opens doors and invites experiences that allow me to help those around me.”
Freeze’s off-camera successes include completion of multiple New York City Marathon races, SCUBA diving with sharks, and broadening children’s understanding of weather by speaking at schools. She enjoys supporting charitable causes and once competed in and won Chicago’s “Dancing With the Stars” event to benefit the March of Dimes.
She and her husband, Gary have four children: three boys ages 14, 11, and 4, and a daughter who is 8 years old.