Photo Library of My Career

Posted on 30 November 2021 by Monica Zech

Photo Library – Highlights During My Career

Sharing some fun photos and special honors during my career. I feel so blessed and grateful for the many opportunities I’ve been given in my career!

(1984-2001) – Proud to be San Diego’s 1st female Air Traffic Reporter and first Television Traffic Reporter for the Automobile Club of Southern California.

 

 

 

 

This photo was my first Public Relations picture as an air traffic reporter for the Auto Club.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Climbing into our traffic helicopter at Montgomery field

 

 

 

 

 

 

Flying over San Diego, my office in the sky!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

From my first year as an air traffic reporter with my pilot Captain Dennis Hottenstien.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In 1985, I had the honor of co-hosting a United Way event at the Old Globe Theater with baseball great Steve Garvey – that was a fun evening!

 

Below, I had the honor of meeting former San Diego Charger Coach Don Coryell. I was so excited to meet him, but I was stunned when he said he was excited to meet me. He coached the Chargers from 1978 to 1986. Unfortunately, he passed away in 2010 at the age of 85.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In 2016 I was very honored to be given the first honorary Associate of Arts degree by Grossmont College. It was Grossmont’s first honorary degree ever given at the College. Thank you for this honor!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In 2010, I was invited by the PTA of a Private High School in Miami, Florida, to deliver one of my safe driving talks to their students, they especially wanted me to target the dangers of “texting” behind the wheel. They had this wonderful banner made to promote my presentation at the school. I first spoke to the students at a noon assembly and was then scheduled to talk to their parents later that evening. I was forewarned not to expect very many parents to attend. But, to their surprise, it was “standing room only!” Students had insisted that their parents come to see my presentation and many of the students came back to see my presentation again. Needless to say, it was a very successful trip!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In 2001, I was honored to be the El Cajon Fire Department’s first Public Information Officer (PIO) and safety educator. In 2005, I became the City’s first PIO.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Following 9/11, it was such an honor to meet several New York City firefighters who came to provide fire training classes at the fire training facility in El Cajon. In the picture is my daughter Victoria and a New York City Firefighter.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In 1994, I was very honored to be the first female emcee of the Fairest of the Fair pageant for the Del Mar Fair, now the San Diego County Fair. For the first 49 years, the pageant had a male emcee, so it was quite an honor. My father would have been so proud to have been there, he loved the Del Mar Fair.  He was killed by a DUI driver two years before this event.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I was given this beautiful crown as a thank you gift for emceeing a Miss La Jolla Fairest of the Fair pageant.

 

 

 

On November 5, 1993, I was invited to be the Guest of Honor at the Recruit Training Command at the Naval Training Center (NTC) – this was the second to last graduating class before the Naval Training Center officially closed.  It was an emotional day in which they also paid tribute to my father. My father graduated from NTC when he came to San Diego when he joined the Navy. He was killed a year before this special event.

 

 

 

 

 

At a freeway opening, I was the emcee of this special event for Caltrans. Then-Senator Lucy Killea came up to thank me for my work as an air traffic reporter and for promoting safety on the air and in the community. I was so honored by her remarks.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I was honored to be the emcee for the official opening of the Otay Mesa Border Crossing in 1983.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In this first photo, I was invited to speak to students at Chase Avenue Elementary in El Cajon. I spoke to them about my job as an air traffic reporter and about the importance of safety. When I arrived, I found this wonderful sign hanging in front of the school. Wow-what a welcome!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I was invited to the school by this young lady “Monica Ambrose.” She presented me with these beautiful flowers as a thank you! She is now grown with a beautiful family of her own.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Among my duties with the El Cajon Fire Department, I was their safety educator. It was an incredible opportunity to educate our young people on fire safety. One of my favorite events was the 3rd Grade Home Escape Plan Poster contest. Pictured here is one of our 1st Place winners. During my first year of talking to 3rd-grade classes about the importance of having a home escape plan, I’ll never forget a comment from one of the students. A young girl walked up to me while students were leaving the assembly and said proudly, “When I grow up, I want to be just like you!” I almost cried, I thanked her as she gave me a big hug!” I knew then I had made the right decision to leave broadcasting and join the fire department. I was also trained in fire investigation and conducting fire inspections in the city.

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