What Linda Sez … About Herself
SheSez is my dream job. As someone who is insanely curious, I get to satiate my appetite for knowledge from women who are fascinating. The podcast focuses on smart, compelling women who are achieving success on their own terms and are gracious enough to open up completely about their secrets, successes and struggles. I’m the lucky one who gets to talk to them—and gets them to talk. But the podcast isn’t chitchat. I’m not a chitchatter. I’m a real journalist.
I started out working in the trenches as a TV reporter/anchor in Jacksonville, Florida and then moved on to news reporting in NYC and LA. I then shifted to entertainment news, becoming a correspondent, anchor and host for E! Entertainment TV. For seven years I was a correspondent/back-up anchor on E! News. I also worked the red carpet for the annual awards shows, and hosted gavel-to-gavel coverage of high-profile trials and other major Hollywood happenings.
In the midst of all that, I married my husband, Charlie (my 8th grade crush back in Maryland), and had two sons, ultimately deciding I wanted to experience being a stay-at-home mom. I loved immersing myself into the lives of my boys but re-entering the workforce in my 40s wasn’t easy. Calls weren’t returned; meetings went nowhere; I got “stuck.” In retrospect, much of that was on me—as I grappled with fear of rejection and being judged. Point of fact: after just 5 years out of the workforce, I’d lost my professional confidence.
I ended up taking a job as editor-in-chief of Ventura Blvd, a print and digital lifestyle platform focusing on the San Fernando Valley. Although I enjoyed the job, I missed broadcasting. And so I came up with the idea for SheSez. Launching the podcast in 2017 was empowering. This was mine! No more sitting across the desk pitching someone who would probably tell me “no.” I didn’t need validation or permission. I could and did greenlight myself. It’s a high that I still feel.
At first, SheSez was all about the “pivot”—women who switched directions, often dramatically, and emerged triumphant. But my interests are broad; I’m particularly fascinated by cutting edge health and wellness. Plus, I live amidst the most progressive practitioners in the world: Los Angeles. Why not branch out? Include health and wellness topics, entrepreneurism, and a bunch of other buckets. So, we cast a wider net.
It’s still my dream job. I trust my gut. I carefully curate my own content, selecting all my guests, some of whom share their stories on-air for the very first time. I talk with women of all ages—from 28-year-old Alex Hanifin who got rejected from every college she applied to and who went on to found Alpine Start coffee (in Whole Foods nationwide) to 78-year-old HBO Documentaries chief/Oscar winner Sheila Nevins.
Conversation is honest and candid. No puffery, promotion or coy responses. I try to connect on a real level about what’s important in life. For me that means happiness, purpose and health. It’s about listening, learning and getting to the point. I respect and value the 30 or 40 minutes listeners spend with me and my guests. If listeners don’t leave the show with at least one concrete takeaway, I’ve missed the mark.
When I’m not working, I listen to my husband pontificate about golf, pretend I’m Ina Garten, spoil my Havanese dogs, and relentlessly toil away in garden. It’s drought tolerant except in summer, when I get obsessed with my vegetable garden.