Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Road Trip: from the Amazing Studios of HSN, Tampa to the Red Carpet Miami Florida!

I recently joined the team of On-Air Spokespeople on HSN (formerly known as The Home Shopping Network) It is an AMAZING oppornity which is best described by the articles written by the Entertainment News Reporters, Jeanne Jakle, SA Express News and Melissa Renteria, Connexion Magazine, San Antonio.


Recommend 0 Jeanne Jakle - Jeanne Jakle: San Antonio's Rita Verreos has had a few TV nibbles since her big break on CBS' "Survivor" more than two years ago, but nothing substantial seemed to come her way ... until now.

The pretty, divorced mom of two is thrilled to finally see results from that exposure: She has signed a contract with cable channel HSN, also known as the Home Shopping Network, to appear as a recurring guest host.

Verreos is set to debut Wednesday -- live at 6 a.m. and 9 p.m. on HSN (Time Warner Cable Channel 43). She will be presenting the high-end line of Mariposa handbags from Sharif Designs.

"Apparently, hundreds had applied (for the post), including prominent news anchors struggling in this current economy," Verreos wrote in an e-mail before leaving Monday to catch a plane to Tampa, Fla., HSN's home base.

"One of the show hosts I'll be appearing with -- Robin Wall -- also started out at HSN as a spokesperson/guest host, so I suppose this is the path that leads to becoming a host on a network that reaches 88 million viewers!"

Since she was voted off the island on "Survivor: Fiji," Verreos, 41, has had a couple of tries as fill-in traffic reporter on KENS and other brief TV shots that didn't amount to much. After her gig as an H-E-B Plus! spokeswoman on Great Day SA, the former model and beauty queen had hoped to eventually land a post on the KENS lifestyle show. It never happened.

She continued to model locally and coach Miss California USA pageant contestants to support her family but held on to her aspirations of a career as a TV Host/Anchor.

Thanks to an S.A. couple she calls her "guardian angels" -- Norman and Monica Wright -- whom she had a fortuitous encounter with at her son's football game, she got the chance she was waiting for. She said Wright kindly told her, "I'd like to put your demo reel in the hands of the on-air talent director at the company I previously worked for: HSN."

Though former TV appearances helped prepare her for the national opportunity, she believes Survivor remains her biggest launch pad. An eternal optimist, Verreos said it's helped to remember that it also took another Survivor alumna, Elizabeth Hasselbeck (then Elizabeth Filarski), a few years to get her big break on The View.

Though I'd hesitate to compare HSN to "The View," it's heartening to see such a determined hard worker like Verreos get a step closer to her TV dream job.

Last month, I received an email from a long-lost Venezuelan friend, Miguel Sierralta. His company was celebrating it's 15 year Anniversary in South Beach, Florida. I was lucky to have been in Tampa those very same days, filming my shows for HSN so I decided to make it a road trip of sorts. I started off with a stop in Naples, to visit a couple of my "Survivor" friends. Cindy Hall and Ace Gordon, from Survivor Tocantins. Here we are celebrating Ace's birthday. No, you're not seeing double..that's Cindy's twin sister, Mindy, whom you may recognize as the 1st Runner Up on the Reality Show, Rock of Love.
Cindy Hall, one of the finalists from Survivor Guatemala was very generous and allowed me to stay with her on a beautiful Horse Ranch where she lives! It's an AMAZINGLY beautiful place. Cindy's an animal lover, to say the least, just like my little girl and I felt really blessed to meet her two adorable horses, the gentle Katie Horse and the Feisty Maggie. My favorite part of the day was the end of the day when we would go and feed them and clean their stables.

After this wonderful visit with Cindy and her sweet animals, I arrived in Miami where I reunited with my long-lost friend (we hadn't seen each other since he came to my Red Carpet Premiere of the movie I was in in 1991, "Market For Death!" Here I am on the Red Carpet of "Miguel Sierralta Productions," 15 year Anniversary.

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