We are excited to announce our 2023 event emcees, Christy McDonald and Roop Raj.
WDIV Local 4
Christy McDonald is an Emmy-Award winning TV anchor and journalist who has covered news in Detroit and Michigan for 25 years. She is currently a special correspondent and anchor at WDIV Local 4.
For the past 11 years, she was Managing Editor/Anchor for WTVS Detroit PBS One Detroit. She created the station’s weekly flagship politics/news show “MiWeek” in 2011, which evolved into “One Detroit” in 2017. In 2020, as a response to the pandemic, McDonald helped create/anchor “One Detroit: Arts & Culture” – a second weekly program devoted to the arts. She also anchored special coverage for DPTV including documentaries, live news events and the Mackinac Policy Conference. McDonald appeared numerous times over the years on the PBS NewsHour and CNN reporting on Michigan politics and Detroit’s financial crisis.
A sought-after moderator and speaker, McDonald has led lively discussions at the Detroit Economic Club, Detroit Policy Conference, Mackinac Policy Conference, International Women’s Day events and BLM’s CEO Summit among others. McDonald also co-moderated Gubernatorial debates in 2014 and 2018. She has appeared on WDET public radio as a guest host/panelist, as well as a featured guest on the syndicated radio show “Remarkable Women” and WJR’s “Anything is Possible”.
McDonald also connected with Detroit viewers for 10 years on WXYZ-TV as an anchor/reporter. She has received numerous reporting honors from the Associated Press, Michigan Association of Broadcasters and Society of Professional Journalists for moderating, anchoring and breaking news coverage. She is the recipient of an Emmy Award for “Best TV News Anchor” in the state of Michigan, as well as for breaking news reporting. McDonald also has guest lectured at Michigan State, U of M Dearborn and Wayne State University.
Christy is a passionate advocate for colorectal cancer awareness after losing her husband Jamie Samuelsen to the disease in August 2020. Samuelsen was a beloved fixture in the Detroit sports talk radio scene and urged listeners to get colonoscopies as his last radio message before he passed away. In that time, McDonald has advocated in her late husband’s name with fundraisers from tennis mixers to a night at Comerica Park, along with nationwide media appearances and podcasts to continue the message of early screening.
McDonald is a graduate of Michigan State University’s James Madison College with a degree in Political Philosophy. She’s raising her three teenagers in her hometown of Troy.
Fox 2 News
Roop Raj is weekday evening anchor at FOX 2 News every weeknight.
His career started at age 14 when he produced and hosted a television program in Troy, Mich. In his first two years at Michigan State University, Raj was on the air at the CBS & ABC stations in Lansing, Mich.
In 1998, he was hired to report and anchor the news in Flint, Michigan. Roop also was a weatherman at WEYI.
That was followed by seven years at NBC in New Orleans. After 24 hurricanes including Katrina, he moved to Detroit in ‘09 where an economic storm was brewing.
FOX 2 led the way during the 2020 elections, bringing you more exclusives than any other station in town. Raj differentiated himself in the market by nailing down three exclusive, one on one interviews with then candidate Joe Biden. He also secured three, one on one exclusives with former President Trump. His final interview landed him in the Rose Garden with a one on one with Trump for 15 minutes at the White House.
When candidates from either side of the isle stop by Detroit, they talk to Raj.
When VP Kamala Harris came to Detroit to encourage vaccinations, the White House chose Roop to conduct an exclusive, one on one interview.
Roop is also a public speaking coach and keynote speaker.
He live with my wife, Julie, and he’s a dog dad to his boxer Louise. She gets more attention than Raj when they’re out and about. Raj loves to cook and bbq. For years on when he reported on the morning show he was criticized for not wearing winter caps. He still won’t. On the weekends, he says he lives in a baseball cap as he hacks around parks throughout the area with Julie.
Raj’s parents live down the road so they watch him on TV every night. Raj says there’s nothing like coming home.