She might anchor two hours a day, five times a week on MSNBC with her shows “MSNBC Live with Stephanie Ruhle” (M-F 9 a.m. ET) and “MSNBC Live with Velshi & Ruhle” (M-F 1 p.m. ET) but more importantly, Stephanie Ruhle realizes the importance of remaining focused on family and relating to her audience on a personal level. This personable television news anchor, who covers everything from the latest headlines on MSNBC to breaking down the day’s business headlines and covering health and wellness for NBC News Digital, has indeed won over her viewers, and is now releasing her first podcast, Modern Ruhles, this month.
Though she is a Jersey girl at heart, Ruhle always loved New York City, and has indeed made it big in the Big Apple. After moving to the city after college, Ruhle, launched into her first career in investment banking, an experience she says is not so far off from her current role: “The things I loved in banking are the things I love about media. They’re both about relationships. In banking it was about building trust and relationships with my clients, and in TV it’s the same. In 2019 you can get information from anywhere. It’s about having a trusted relationship with my viewers. While it may seem like we’ve never been more divided, I think there are three things every American wants: to be financially secure, physically safe and socially free. These are the tenets that guide our show each day, and hopefully help to make our viewer a little bit better and smarter.”
This successful media maven also has another full-time job: motherhood. With three children – two boys and a girl – Ruhle and her husband, Andy, always make time for family…but it’s not always easy. “Working moms like me carry a lot of guilt: when I’m at work, I’m constantly worried about what am I missing at home. When I’m at home, I’m concerned about what I’m missing at work. I think working moms blame themselves for coming up short in both places. No one ever asks my husband when he’s on a business trip about who is watching the kids. I get this question constantly. I struggle with this even today, but am committed to changing the culture in my own life and for those around me.”
Ruhle has always been passionate about the advancement of women and girls. The 43-year-old anchor explained that it’s important for women to stick together to rise through the ranks in their careers. While she was still in banking, Ruhle founded the Corporate Investment Bank Women’s Network where she encouraged girls to study math and economics, urged undergraduate women to pursue careers in finance and helped her female colleagues already in the industry climb the ladder.
It was Ruhle’s participation in the White House Project – a non-profit organization that worked to increase female representation in American businesses and government – that launched her career in media.
Ruhle was introduced to Andy Lack, the chairman and CEO of Bloomberg Media at the time and current NBC News & MSNBC Chairman, at an event run through the organization. While Ruhle was proud of all she had accomplished on Wall Street, she was ready for a new challenge; one that put her in a place she wasn’t so familiar with: the bottom. Her new career goal? An on air job in media. How to get there? Ruhle had not a clue. “I didn’t have a background in television, but Andy said to me, in the new world of media, there will be no more TV presenters. We need people who know the content and love the content.” The good news for Ruhle? That was her.
She knew joining Bloomberg with no prior experience was certainly a risk, but one that would paid off immensely. She went on to become an anchor and managing editor for Bloomberg Television and editor-at-large for Bloomberg News, where she co-hosted Bloomberg <GO>, Bloomberg TV’s flagship morning show prior to joining NBC News and MSNBC in 2016.
Now, Ruhle delivers the latest breaking news and live coverage of the day’s important stories for NBC News and MSNBC, as well as NBC News Digital, where she weighs in on lifestyle, wellness and trending topics in leadership. “The unique thing about NBC News and MSNBC is that on any given day, I could be reporting on a business story for “NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt,” providing the “TODAY” audience with tips to get back into the workforce and tackling the latest news of the day on my MSNBC shows.”
Today, this busy broadcaster is taking her talents to a new medium: podcasting. Her new series, Modern Ruhles, compelling conversations in culturally complicated times, produced in collaboration iHeartMedia, focuses on introducing dialogue and open mindedness. “We’re living in a time when our instinct has become shutting those who don’t agree with us down, instead of listening to one another. We have more platforms and outlets than ever – but dialogue has died. The line of what one can or cannot say has never been more blurry, yet we’ve never been more woke. I felt like it was important to talk about some of today’s hot button topics without fighting.”
Ruhle was inspired to start these conversations while on vacation in Upstate New York. A waitress at a local restaurant explained to the anchor why she was a self-proclaimed “deplorable.” After a long conversation about the woman’s life and loyalty to President Trump, Ruhle realized this woman was looking for change.
This inspired Ruhle to open the dialogue about the issues confronting us on a day-to-day basis to try to see past stereotypes and hear alternative points of view. “If we could understand other people’s perspectives, it would help us progress. Politics or culture shouldn’t divide us. Suddenly there’s a growing list of topics that we can’t discuss with our own families or friends without fear of being labeled ignorant or out of touch. We might talk about them privately but wouldn’t feel comfortable saying them publicly.” Each episode of the podcast focuses on a specific issue – ranging from privilege to political correctness – and aims to deliver compelling conversations in culturally complicated times.
Ruhle is creating a platform that gets at the truth of who we are and where we’re going. Throughout the podcast, Ruhle sits down with some of her favorite voices of influence to discuss these hot button issues. Actress and writer Amber Tamblyn joins to discuss the significance of the Me Too movement; athlete, comedian and actor Terry Crews delves into the origins of toxic masculinity; and Ruhle has a hard and heartfelt conversation with her mother about her definition of feminism.
This former downtown girl turned Upper East Sider has come to love her neighborhood, which she describes as a great place to raise kids. “It’s amazing to me that the Guggenheim is my kids’ local museum and their Little League is in Central Park. Right now, we’re undertaking the challenge of trying every pizzeria on the East Side, my kids do the reviews.” On calling New York City home, the news anchor says she still can’t believe she lives here. “It’s the greatest city in the world. Every time I go over the bridge, I take a picture of it. People think of New York as being so impersonal, but I think it’s just the opposite. New York has become my family.”
Between her popular news programs and her upcoming podcast, Modern Ruhles, Ruhle is driven by smart content that both informs viewers and fosters an environment to welcome all perspectives. Tune in to NBC News, MSNBC or wherever you get your podcasts as she looks to her most trusted colleagues, friends and family to start a new conversation on the day’s latest topics.
Produced by Hillary Latos
Hair: Erica Raddi