Terri Gruca is an anchor and investigative reporter at KVUE in Austin, Texas.
Her parents always told her, "Find a job you love and work will never feel like work." That's why she feel so fortunate to be a journalist at KVUE.
You'll see her at 5 p.m. and occasionally on Midday at 11 a.m. For nearly a decade she was the main anchor at KVUE anchoring the 5 and 10 p.m. newscasts. You'll still see her make appearances there with her consumer, investigative and inspirational features. Terri has the ability to get to the heart of complex issues and make people learn something, feel something or do something with her powerful storytelling.
Terri has covered hurricanes, the first ever joint training exercise between Russian and U.S. troops, and the Minneapolis bridge collapse. She even interviewed President Barack Obama at the White House.
Her COVID stories about loved ones being shut out of nursing homes eventually led to a state law that requires families to have designated essential caregivers that can visit their loved ones in nursing homes and assisted living facilities even during pandemics.
Her medical device dangers investigations has triggered the proposal of two federal bills, and her investigation into dangerous cast iron gas pipes triggered gas companies in Central Texas to remove miles of aging cast iron pipes. Terri started looking into this issue after a young father was killed when his home exploded.
Meet Terri Gruca
She is also grateful for all the women and families who've shared their stories about breast cancer with her over the years. Several of them have been recognized by the Texas Medical Association, including the one she did with her mom and the stage four breast cancer survivors. Her hope is that we can continue to raise awareness in hopes that other families won't have to experience this awful disease.
In 2004 while working at WCCO, Terri convinced her boss to let her test the gumball machine jewelry for lead. Sure enough, each piece showed high levels of lead. It turns out, the government had not been testing them and left it up to each manufacturer.
Her investigation sparked the largest recall in nationwide history and resulted in a new federal law that bans lead from all toys. To this day, more than 700 million pieces of jewelry and toys have been recalled as a result of those stories. It also changed Minnesota's lead law.
Terri feels fortunate that her peers have honored her work with an Edward R. Murrow, six individual Emmys and one for our KVUE newscasts. Our 10 p.m. newscast was honored with an Emmy for best newscast in 2010.
Terri's stories have also received numerous Associated Press, Northwest Broadcast News Association, Minnesota Broadcasters Association and Society of Professional Journalists awards. Her investigation on daycares also earned her a trip to the Montel Williams Show.
Terri has worked at some terrific stations including WRAL in Raleigh, NC, WBIR in Knoxville, TN, WSPA in Spartanburg, SC and WCCO in Minneapolis.
She enjoys volunteering for various organizations. When she's not at work, you'll probably find her out enjoying the weather. Yes, even in the heat -- remember, she spent five and a half years in Minnesota. Terri also enjoys exploring the Hill Country, walking the hike and bike trails and listening to music and eating the food from our local restaurants. She also love to cook, so she's constantly trying out new recipes and baking up treats for everyone at work.
Chances are, you'll also hear her loud cheers during football and basketball season. She's a huge college sports fan, which is another reason she's thrilled to be in Austin.
Terri grew up in North Carolina and graduated from UNC Chapel Hill. Mack Brown was UNC's head football coach when she was in school.
She is a wife and proud mommy of a smart, fun loving boy and two stepsons. If you see her out and about, be sure to stop and say hello.
- Photos by KVUE's John Gusky at Mount Bonnell in Austin