RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — You may have noticed a new anchor on the team at 8News. Heather Hope joined our team in August, bringing her love for reporting and her signature colorful style with her to Richmond.

Before moving to Virginia, Heather lived and worked across the East Coast, West Coast and Midwest. She is an Atlanta native who earned her bachelor’s degree in journalism from Ohio State University and her master’s degree in broadcast journalism from the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School. After college, she landed her first media job at KGET in Bakersfield, California, before moving on to KWTV in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Most recently, Heather reported and anchored for KFMB-TV in San Diego.

By joining 8News, Heather will be closer to her family, who still live on the East Coast, and she is looking forward to exploring the unique history and culture of Central Virginia, which has already piqued her interest.

“It’s cool to be in a place where so much has happened in history,” Heather said. “To be in a place where slave ships used to dock and so many people were taken advantage of, but these are communities where we live and thrive, and we are all progressing with history in the back of our mind.”

Heather has an impressive reporting roster under her belt — she has covered everything from education to natural disasters and interviewed everyone from First Lady Dr. Jill Biden to the Jonas Brothers. In the past few years, her reporting has earned her national acclaim.

She won an Emmy in 2020 for breaking news coverage of a deadly synagogue shooting in Poway, California, which threw her head-first into a story she had to report live from the scene.

“I was the first person from my station to be in front of the synagogue,” she said. “It was around Passover and the people inside didn’t have their cell phones as part of the observation. So, we were live on scene and you have the task to try to deliver information you don’t have…and you have to deal with the panic and the fear.”

She received her second Emmy nomination just this year for her 2021 coverage of the first female Marine recruiting class to train at Camp Pendleton in California. Heather wasn’t just on the sidelines — she and her crew got to join the class in an infamous final Marine training test.

“There’s this particular hike at the end of their 45-day training to become a Marine, it’s called the Grim Reaper part of their hike,” Heather said. “I just thought we’d just be covering it at the base, but to see it and get video we had to hike the last part.”

No matter the topic, Heather’s favorite stories aren’t just the ones that win awards, but those that capture a human story — whether it is a man finding his wedding ring in the rubble after a fire destroyed his new home, or a class of Marine recruits helping each other through their final test.

When she’s not reporting, Heather likes to unwind by traveling, going on walks and shopping. She joins Eric Philips and Chief Meteorologist John Bernier for the new 8News 4 p.m. broadcast starting on Monday, Sept. 12. You can follow her on TwitterFacebookInstagram or send her an email at hhope@wric.com