Seven-year niche: ABC 7 promotes reporter Gallardo

Seven years after she made the leap from Spanish-language television to Chicago’s top-rated general market news operation, Michelle Gallardo is moving up to full-time reporter at WLS-Channel 7.

In promoting Gallardo from freelance status, effective Tuesday, Jennifer Graves, vice president and news director of the ABC-owned station, said: “Michelle has proven herself time and time again in the past seven years working for ABC 7 News as a freelance reporter. She has shown her versatility, dedication and determination, and I have no doubt she will have continued success in this new position.”

The move coincides with the station’s expansion of its 10pm Saturday and Sunday newscasts to one hour.

One of my personal favorite memories of Gallardo was the Sunday morning in April 2010 when former ABC 7 weekend news anchor Kevin Roy failed to show up for the newscast he was to have anchored solo. Gallardo jumped in the anchor seat at the last moment and held the broadcast together until Ben Bradley was hustled in from home to replace her.

Before joining ABC 7 in May 2004, Gallardo had spent three years at Univision WGBO-Channel 66 as a weekday general assignment reporter, weekend weather forecaster and fill-in news anchor. She also hosted Primera Plana, a community affairs show.

A native of Mexico City, she holds dual citizenship in the United States and Mexico. Gallardo graduated with a degree in international relations from the Universidad de las Americas in Puebla, Mexico, and with a master’s degree in broadcast journalism from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. She previously worked for CNN, Television Azteca in Mexico City, GMTV in London, and Hearst-Argyle Television and Conus Communications in Washington, D.C.

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Laura Baginski, Editor (@TimeOutChicago)