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Rising Star Aubrey Aquino On Why It’s So Important To Have Diversity Reflected in TV and Film

It is so important to have diversity in entertainment. As a little girl, I didn’t have many role models to look up to who “looked like me.” Our world is extremely diverse and what we see, watch and hear should reflect that in mainstream culture. If we make diversity the norm, it will be expected […]


It is so important to have diversity in entertainment. As a little girl, I didn’t have many role models to look up to who “looked like me.” Our world is extremely diverse and what we see, watch and hear should reflect that in mainstream culture. If we make diversity the norm, it will be expected and not the exception and in turn, lead to more inclusion and understanding of the world we all live in.


As a part of my series about pop culture’s rising stars, I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Aubrey Aquino. Aubrey is the host of Your California Life on ABC10 in Sacramento. A Northern California native, Aubrey is excited to connect with viewers and showcase the best places to eat, fun events, discovering ways to save money and much more on ABC10’s lifestyle and talk show. Aubrey joined Your California Life in July 2019 and has several years’ experience interviewing guests from all walks of life, including Hollywood celebrities, sports stars, business and government leaders, as well as local community members who all have a story to share. Most recently, Aubrey has been working at ABC7 San Francisco, hosting and producing lifestyle content, and she previously worked on the East Coast as a lifestyle host in southern Virginia. She also spent four years as an entertainment and features reporter in Miami on WSVN’s Deco Drive. In 2014, Aubrey was honored as a “Top 20 Under 40” professional for Brickell Magazine. Her television projects have also included appearing on the ESPN original series “Beg, Borrow and Deal,” E! News, CNN and the NFL Network. Aubrey has also been a pro team dancer for the NBA’s Sacramento Kings, and an NFL Cheerleader for the Oakland Raiders and the Arizona Cardinals. Aubrey earned her Broadcast Journalism degree from San Jose State University and shares all about her adventures as a mom, on her blog 53 Weeks.


Thank you so much for doing this with us Aubrey! Can you tell us the story of how you grew up?

I grew up in a middle class family in San Jose, CA. My parents are both immigrants from the Philippines who arrived in the U.S. separately and met in Chicago, shortly before my father was discharged for the U.S. Army.

Can you share a story with us about what brought you to this specific career path?

There is no one defining moment when I decided to follow a career in broadcast television. I’ve known since high school I wanted to work in television and I think it stems from my curious nature, to always ask questions and connect the dots. I have also always enjoyed performing and being a person who communicates well with an audience.

Can you tell us the most interesting story that happened to you since you began your career?

I have had and continue to have so many wonderful experiences on my career journey. I have lived and worked in my hometown Bay Area, Phoenix, Miami and now Sacramento. I have traveled internationally on assignment, wrestled with alligators, swam with stingrays and interviewed A-list celebs like John Travolta and Meryl Streep.

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?

I’m currently hosting a daily 1-hour live lifestyle show, where we talk DIY projects, bring on chefs to cook in studio, as well as welcome live music performances…no two days are the same. The show has also just been rebranded to showcase everything California has to offer!

We are very interested in diversity in the entertainment industry. Can you share three reasons with our readers about why you think it’s important to have diversity represented in film and television? How can that potentially affect our culture?

It is so important to have diversity in entertainment. As a little girl, I didn’t have many role models to look up to who “looked like me.” Our world is extremely diverse and what we see, watch and hear should reflect that in mainstream culture. If we make diversity the norm, it will be expected and not the exception and in turn, lead to more inclusion and understanding of the world we all live in.

What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why. Please share a story or example for each.

  1. Networking — I thought after college I would graduate and apply and get a job, because I did what I was supposed to do, go to college and get a degree. However, while that is important, networking is what has really helped me find so many of the opportunities I have been given.
  2. Don’t be afraid to take a leap of faith — I have moved across the country and went back and forth on more than a few occasions. It’s true, if you do what you love, you will never work a day in your life.
  3. Treat others how you want to be treated — You may start as an intern or another entry level job, but everyone has been there. Don’t ever forget where you came from and treat everyone with respect.
  4. Don’t take it personal — Not everything will go your way. I have been rejected and turned down for more jobs that I care to count, but I keep going and took advantage of the doors that were opened to me. You can’t take it personal, because many times the reason it didn’t work out, is probably not because of you.
  5. Everything happens for a reason — I’ve always been the type to try and plan out my day, my week, my month, my life…but sometimes you get thrown a curveball. You may not understand why at the time, but sometimes you just need to go with the flow and let life happen.

Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?

It is easy to get burned out, or fall into the day to day routine, and that’s why it is so important to take time to reflect on your entire body of work. It’s okay to give yourself credit for where you have been and what you have accomplished, and also to keep focus on new goals to keep you moving forward. Media/TV is a rapidly changing business, especially with the digital elements and constant advances in technology, so just take it day by day and keep in mind why you got in the business in the first place.

How can our readers follow you on social media?

IG — @aubreyaquinotv

Twitter — @aubreyanne

FB — Aubrey Aquino

This was very meaningful, thank you so much!

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