(Photo courtesy of Pierce Public Relations)
Breaking the Mold
How Inside Edition’s Megan Alexander is Encouraging Career Women of Faith to Dream Big
By Sarah Komisky
Ambitious, driven, and adventurous sounds nothing like the stereotypical “Christian woman” and for Megan Alexander that is a good thing. Embracing the fact that God did not make her to fit a cookie cutter role, she has broken the mold in several areas as a successful female leader. First, as a national correspondent for Inside Edition, next as a special correspondent for CBS’ Thursday Night Football, and then as an author of her recent release, “Faith in the Spotlight.” Yet this is not a comprehensive list. She has also appeared as a guest commentator on HLN’s Showbiz Tonight as well as the Wendy Williams Show, has an impressive acting resume, and has been the go-to host for the Country Music Awards in Nashville, Tennessee. Now, she is encouraging career women of faith to live their dreams without compromising their beliefs and moral standards. Marked Ministry caught up with Megan as she shared her thoughts on the Superbowl, being a female in a man’s world, dealing with insecurity, leadership, advocating abstinence and much more.
For those who don’t know, share a little bit about your faith story and how you came to Christ?
Megan: My parents enrolled my sister and I in a Christian school (Kings) in Seattle, more for education than faith. It had a profound impact on me and my entire family. We went to church as a family since I can remember, and I came to know Christ in kindergarten. However, it was in junior high that I really came to understand what I believe. I am so grateful for my faith and how it guides my life and career.
I know you are a correspondent for Inside Edition and you just came back from covering the Super Bowl, yet again. What was it like this time around (especially with such an exciting game)?
Megan: This was my seventh Super Bowl and it is always a super exciting assignment. People in this country love their football. This year’s game was really fun because we all thought the Falcons had it and then late in the forth quarter the Patriots finally woke up. I was in the stands with the fans, filing reports when the game went into overtime. This was the first overtime ever in a Super Bowl game – what a finish. But it’s also totally exhausting. I felt like I needed to sleep for a full day when it was over, and with two little boys, that didn’t happen.
As a sports journalist, what is it like being a female in a stereotypical “man’s world?”
Megan: There are certainly times when you just can’t relate because ladies can’t play professional football. But I just try and be as prepared as I can. Know your craft, work hard and deliver. Take it seriously. I find that’s what matters most. I really enjoyed my two seasons covering Thursday Night Football. I was the only female on a team of four and those guys were like brothers. It was a great experience.
I know you just wrote a new book, “Faith in the Spotlight.” As a career woman of faith, how do you want to encourage young women to dream big?
Megan: By writing this book. It is full of advice, stories and insights from my time on the job, and I asked several of my friends like Gabby Douglas, Roma Downey, Michael W. Smith and others to share their advice. I wrote this book because I discovered there was no book for the ambitious, career-driven female of faith. I hope this will help start and continue that conversation.
To tag along with that question, many young women think they have to compromise to get to the top, so how do you want to encourage young women to not compromise in their faith and what are some things you’ve done to guard yourself against that?
Megan: This is a tough question and it’s the main reason why I wrote the book. The most important thing is to know who you are. Write a mission statement. What are your black and white issues – what will you not compromise on and when can you be flexible? How does your faith guide you? And when you get to that big job, how will you “remember who you are?” This has been my guiding light. I answer all these questions and more in “Faith in the Spotlight.”
Superficiality is huge in the arena you work in. Do you ever feel the pressure of being “not enough” and how do you deal with your own insecurities?
Megan: Of course. This is an image obsessed industry. I knew what I was getting into. You need to look put together in this business and in many other jobs. But if my value comes from the Lord, I need to remember that, in how I dress and represent myself. I tackle this subject in the chapter titled “Body Image” in “Faith in the Spotlight.”
Another area that I really appreciate is your transparency with being an advocate for abstinence. Marked Ministry’s vision is show young girls what it looks like to walk in purity in this generation. With that in mind, for you, why was saving yourself for marriage so important?
Megan: Early on I just decided I wanted to. I had role models in my life who encouraged me in this direction. I know how important that encouragement was, so that’s why I added a chapter in my book on this topic. My husband did not wait. He found his faith later in life, and he made the decision to wait with me. In the book, I discuss how I came to share my story of abstinence on national television. Some people discouraged me from sharing, but my husband and I decided that marriage is hard enough in today’s world, and if our story inspires one person, it’s worth it. I simply want young people to know that waiting is an option – it worked for me and it can work for you. No one talks about it anymore and that’s why I am.
What prompted you to share your story with others?
Megan: I received an email from a pastor in Seattle. He wrote to me a few years ago and said, “Megan, I have a church full of young, ambitious women of faith. They have big career goals and dreams but are worried they will need to compromise their faith to get ahead. They have few role models to look towards in this world, but I’ve heard of you. Will you come speak to these women?” I said yes, and I will take it a step further, I will write this book. And so I did.
I know you were recently in the movie Redeemed, any other acting projects on the horizon?
Megan: I love acting. I have a small role in and also am an executive producer of the upcoming feature film “Heartbeats.” I have parts in the CMT show “Still the King,” ABC’s “Nashville,” the movie “Space Warriors” and I am working on producing a film this summer.
Find out more about Megan Alexander at: http://www.meganalexander.com/