During Monday's newscast of 12 News at 10 p.m., I took an opportunity to say:
Thank you, Phoenix.
Thank you for welcoming me so warmly into your community and extending many words of support and encouragement. I truly appreciate it all and it's what has helped make Arizona truly feel like home in such a short time since my arrival.
I seized the moment to address some viewer inquiries wondering why I pronounce certain words in Spanish in just that – Spanish.
MORE ABOUT VANESSA RUIZ: Hello, Vanessa
I was raised speaking both languages and for me, certain words just sound better when said in their natural way. It really is that simple.
Nothing more, nothing less.
Let me be clear: My intention has never been to be disrespectful or dismissive, quite the contrary. I actually feel I am paying respect to the way some of Arizona's first, original settlers intended for some things to be said.
I know it may surprise some of you and maybe even rub some people the wrong way. I get it and know I am always open to engage in thoughtful dialogue about it.
I don't intend to come to Phoenix and do things "my way," however my goal is to stay authentic to who I am while, hopefully, making our newscasts more open and inclusive to everyone, no matter where they come from.