In this series, Faces of Rosslyn, we profile members of our community. These interesting and inspiring individuals make up the fabric of our vibrant neighborhood. We are glad to have them! Want us to profile you or someone you know in Rosslyn? Contact us!
Growing up in Kansas City, Mo., WJLA-TV Anchor and Reporter Adrianna Hopkins was fortunate to be part of a close group of high school girlfriends. They were a motivated bunch, says Hopkins, and each of them ended up doing exactly what she said she'd do with her life. When one of these women got married years ago, her friend's dad pulled Hopkins aside at the wedding and said:
"Remember when you'd come over to our house for sleepovers and you'd go downstairs to watch Dateline and 20/20? You're the only person I know who'd say, 'I'm done painting nails and braiding hair. I want to watch the news!'"
This story kind of sums up who Hopkins is: A journalist. A reporter. A newswoman. It's something she's always known.
"My high school had a T.V. station, so I'd drive over there in the morning and do the news for our district and then go to classes," she recalls. "I was on the yearbook staff and newspaper staff, too."
Hopkins got her degree in Broadcast Journalism from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and considers herself a Tar Heel through and through. She also says she's "a Midwestern girl," but admits that she only gets back to Kansas City once a year and doesn't know the best restaurants and places to go anymore. "It's completely changed," she says.
After graduating, she followed an often typical broadcast journalist's path, moving every few years to help her career progress. She began by working behind the scenes in the consumer investigative unit, "5 On Your Side," at WRAL in Raleigh, N.C. After that, she also worked as a reporter in Macon, Ga., Louisville, Ky., Miami, Fla., and, most recently, as an anchor in New Orleans, La.1 She's won two Emmys, including one for her work creating and producing the series "The Outsiders" while at WHAS-TV in Louisville. The program featured a variety of stories, from one about highly popular drag queens making careers in conservative Kentucky to another about fathers and daughters who attended purity balls.
Hopkins says she's been very happy with her latest gig at WJLA-TV, where she anchors the noon news broadcast and co-anchors "Good Morning Washington." She loves the D.C. area. She and her husband, Ge-Mar, have been married for a little more than a year and live in Rosslyn. She walks to work (it literally takes her two minutes) and he commutes out to Tysons Corner.
"I like that the D.C. area has a nice, middle-class black population. It's diverse, and you have a lot of women doing really powerful, big things here," she says. "I also ask myself: 'If/when I have a family, what do I want my kids to see and grow up with?' I don't have any problems with the D.C. area. You get the spectrum of life: There's socioeconomic and ethnic diversity. There are people here from all over the world, and college students, and lots of new and fresh ideas."
Hopkins says, when she and her husband moved here, living in Rosslyn appealed to her because she's not ready for the suburbs yet. She wanted to be in the city and "Rosslyn is technically a suburb but really it's not."
"Rosslyn has major convenience," she says. "It wouldn't make sense to live in the city when I can live right here and walk to work. And my husband doesn't have to fight D.C. traffic getting in and out of Tysons each day."
When she and her husband aren't working, Hopkins says they enjoy exploring the area. They go to brunch and bars a lot. They also like trying restaurants in D.C. and Arlington, taking trips to New York, and traveling more widely (they recently got back from Jamaica). She loves that you can fly anywhere from nearby Reagan National Airport.
"We're trying to pound out those last months of the two of us before we have a family and we can't do anything," she jokes.