LOCAL | Family Ties With Sharon Snow

Sharon Snow is one of NTV’s most dynamic employees — a force in the boardroom and star in front of the camera

 

It’s been almost three decades since she arrived at NTV – bringing talent, grace and enthusiasm to a career that continues to evolve.

Most know her as the likeable host of the long-running feature Places to Go, a weekly visit to interesting haunts around the province. It’s a segment that’s been a fixture on The NTV Evening Newshour for 21 years, introducing viewers to local artisans and interesting locales. In fact, her face is as identifiable as any on local television. The Fogo native was actually the station’s primary weather person for a while, and continues to be a popular fill-in for Eddie Sheerr, when called up.

‘JOIE DE VIVRE’

“Everything Sharon touches seem to turn to gold and I know why. It’s because Sharon is hard working, focused, determined and intelligent,” says colleague and friend Toni-Marie Wiseman. 

“But she’s also kind, generous and a simple joy to be around. It is her joie de vivre that is so endearing and a pleasure to watch on TV.”

She also has a great sense of humor, an infectious laugh, is undeniably humble and adored by her colleagues. A number of staff actually had t-shirts designed several years ago proclaiming ‘Sharon Snow is kind of a big deal around here.’

Snow, of course, doesn’t act like it, but she absolutely is.

What most don’t know is that Snow is the station’s top sales executive, acquiring new business while maintaining enduring relationships with all her clients. She’s cultivated a stable of loyal clients but remains as driven as ever. The company’s success is directly linked to Snow’s on-air versatility and sales acumen.

What you see is what you get. That big smile is not just for the camera. It’s one her clients and colleagues see every day. 

“She’s one of the most genuine people I know, an incredible person and such a treasure for this company,” says long-time friend and NTV GM Lindsey Andrews.

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‘NEW THINGS’

Snow, 52, has interviewed hundreds of people, celebrated major companies and introduced viewers to exciting start-ups. And she’s taken her P2G feature outside the province to places like New York and Ireland. Yes, she visited the World Trade Centre several years ago and filed a series of stories from Ireland where she celebrated the connection between the two islands. 

Snow is also up for any challenge. She repelled off the side of the RCMP detachment as part of the force’s tactical team, delivered a menacing weather forecast on the eve of Hurricane Igor and, get this, even milked a cow as part of an entertaining weather hit. 

“That’s the great thing about this job, the opportunity you get to have fun and try new things,” she says. 

“It’s even more fun when you get to work alongside so many great people.”

Snow continues to play a major role on the air each week and perhaps an even bigger role behind the scenes. The Herald recently sat down with her to talk business, what’s ahead and her greatest achievement – her children.

You’ve been such a recognizable face in this province for many years, and we’ve seen your family grow with you. You are clearly a very proud mom.

As every Mom is, I’m sure. I’m proud of the beautiful young people my kids have become.

 As the company’s top sales executive and a fixture on NTV, it’s quite the challenge to juggle a career and family life. How challenging has it been?

Honestly, there were times that it was very challenging. It’s not a 9 to 5 career, so when kids are young and they need you at supper time and you’re not there, it is really hard. I think moms are tougher on ourselves than we need be. The upside of my career is we are flexible and we can take time from our daily schedule to attend a school concert or make a doctor appointment. 

Looking back on it now, I’ll ask my children did they remember the times or days I wasn’t there for supper and they’ll always say ‘No, I don’t, but I remember the time we carved pumpkins and made cookies or went on that hike.’

I’ve learned that when moms are super busy, they beat themselves up because they feel they’re not doing enough. It’s about the quality of time you spend together. That’s how I’ve come to rationalize it in my head.

It’s fun here at The Herald to look back on your Herald covers, especially the Mother’s Day-themed issues, and see your babies grow up. Tell us a little bit about both Ethan and Jorja?

First of all, I had to ask their permission about being on the cover. We had planned to do a family portrait and celebrate Ethan’s high school graduation so it was perfect timing to do a Mother’s Day shoot for The Herald. 

However, I couldn’t automatically assume they would say yes. They did say yes but mostly I think to support their Mama. So, thanks kids.

Ethan is such a funny guy. He makes me laugh so hard and has quite a sense of humor. He’s now 18 and graduating high school. Honestly, I can’t believe it. He’s an A student and going to MUN (Bachelor of Science Program) with a focus in Computer Science.

He’s working part-time and going to school and enjoys playing the piano, watching movies and, like most teenagers, eating.

He’s a very logical thinker so I’m not surprised his studies are directing him in in computer science field.

Jorja is 15 and turning Sweet 16 in November! She is a very focused and driven young woman. I describe her as a fierce young woman because she’s all that. She’s helpful, sensitive, smart (straight A’s),
determined and such a kind and compassionate young lady. She’s my buddy and I just love the time we spend together.

They’ve both adapted well to all that this year has thrown at them – being a student and learning online while not getting to see your friends is tough but they’ve weathered it well.

How are Ethan and Jorja alike and different?

They both are funny and are big supporters of their Mom. They’re both very smart, love to laugh and we love watching movies together. They both love spending family time together and, wherever possible, eat together at the table. 

That’s a very important rule. That, and saying grace. We feel more connected when we sit together and chat about the day or things we’re going to do.

Ethan is very laid back and gets things done in his own time. He doesn’t mind that his room is messy. Jorja is more like me – ‘Plan the work and work the plan.’ Like me, she’s a list person. She’s a planner. Even with all this technology I still operate with a daily planner. We both love interior design and are all big fans of decorating for the holidays! And Jorja would never have a messy room.

 You’re clearly a family-first person who takes great joy in being a mom. Tell us about your mom and the values your family instilled in you?

My Mom is absolutely awesome. She was a stay-at-home mom so the joy of having her there as a child is something I will always treasure. I remember coming home on the bus and wondering what little snack Mom had prepared for me and my brothers. 

I remember coming home, smelling baked bread and cookies in the oven. It still happens today when we visit Fogo. She is the most gentle person I know.

I can honestly say I cannot recall a time in my childhood that she ever raised her voice to me or got angry – not because I was the perfect child but because her nature is that of gentleness and accommodation. She still is that person and no wonder why my kids and I long to go home to Fogo to see Nan and Pop!

Switching gears to your career on NTV, you’ve somehow done it all. Your Places to Go feature is one of the province’s longest-running features. You’ve delivered so many weather forecasts over the years and have represented the company in so many ways. What do you love most about your career?

That’s hard to say because I absolutely love it all. I’m blessed to be able to have two careers, running simultaneously together with an amazing multi-media company that is delivering top-notch news, programming and prime-time programs to our province. Places to Go celebrated 21 years this past February. It’s so great to get out in the community to meet people who are working hard to grow their businesses. This past year has been rough on business so Places to Go is an opportunity for us to highlight some of these businesses.

The media sales side of my role is one I’ve been doing with NBC for almost 29 years now. Working with clients to help them create marketing strategies and branding for their business is a role I take very seriously. Selling is about relationships and trust. The rapport you have with your clients and the trust they have in you. It’s earned and it’s rewarding. My clients’ success is my success and my success is Newfoundland Broadcasting’s success and when I have a media powerhouse that is NTV, OZFM, The Newfoundland Herald and our web assets, the sky is the limit. That’s my thought process, my mantra.

What’s changed since you started at NTV all those years ago? You’ve seen so many changes?

Haha. I remember physically driving to pick up my clients commercials that were reel tapes, and faxing scripts for approval or filling out contracts by hand for TV programs. 

I remember hauling cables each night in preparing for live weather hits or determining the best location to place ‘The Hummer’ to get a line of sight back from our weather hit location to the station.

My goodness, I could go on and on. After almost three decades in the business, you see many changes.

Finally, there’s no love like that of a mother? What does being a mom mean to you?

It sounds so cliché but it’s the hardest and most rewarding job – hardest because I want to give my kids the best of me and sometimes I know I fall short. 

However, it’s rewarding too because my life is most fulfilling because they are in it. We have no idea what the future holds for us, but I hope my kids will do their best to support their own families and community one day and my greatest wish is that they will be able to look back on our relationship and know that I was a Mom who was there for them when they needed me.



To stay in the know with Sharon Snow, follow her on Twitter here.

Pam is the Managing Editor of The Newfoundland Herald. As the mother of two, she proudly writes about a life lived simply at home on 'The Rock.' When not interviewing or writing about NL's finest, Pam can be found spending her time in the great Newfoundland outdoors.

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