Several years ago, when Noor Tagouri was a student at the University of Maryland, she was able to shadow some pretty big names in journalism, including Anderson Cooper, Soledad O’Brien and Christiane Amanpour. She also got to tag along with an ABC reporter, who happened to snap a photo of Tagouri at an anchor desk. Tagouri posted the image on her Facebook page with the caption: “This is what my dream looks like, and I’m going to make it happen.”
Of course, thousands of young women in Washington have had this dream. The difference for Tagouri: She wanted to be the first hijabi anchor on American TV.
Soon after Tagouri posted the image, it went viral worldwide, with tens of thousands of shares. And the Libyan-Americanfrom Bowie, Md., was on her way. She’s now an anchor and producer at Newsy and is currently working on a series called A Woman’s Job—premiering this month—showcasing her travels across the country profiling women in male-dominated fields, such as football coaching and chemical engineering. While becoming a national anchor isn’t her highest priority any longer, Tagouri still wants to be a national voice. She has a full slate of speaking engagements (she’s already notched a TED Talk) with a stop at Austin’s SXSW this spring.
“Fully embracing my identity is a huge part of why I’ve gotten the incredible opportunities I have,” she says. “It made me work a lot harder. People love authenticity, and I stayed true to that in my career. It wasn’t always easy, I definitely didn’t get jobs because of the hijab, but I always say those jobs just weren’t right for me. Why would I ever want to work for a place that didn’t want me to be myself and [didn’t see] the value in being more representative of who the American people really are?”
Everything cheese, Smart Water, handwritten letters, gratitude journal, music from the early 2000s, the smell of a new book
Internet trolls, DC traffic, when Facetime freezes, societal beauty standards, people who don’t say thank you, football
Originally published in the March issue of DC
Photography Courtesy Of: