Iowa news reporter Nora J.S. Reichardt came out as trans during an on-air broadcast.
On 4 October, the Des Moines-based journalist reintroduced herself as a trans woman during an interview on WOI-TV’s 6 pm news slot – which was the same day she legally changed her name.
“For a long time, I didn’t think I would get to say that, at least not on air like this. I didn’t know if there was a space for me to do this sort of work that I’ve really come to love and enjoy while also getting to be myself,” she told former WOI journalist and friend Eva Andersen.
Reichardt first began to question her gender identity during high school. However, due to living in a rural area and lack of LGBTQ+ resources, she classified her feelings as depression and anxiety.
“There were times when a day at work felt like “a dress-up” day, but there were times that that’s really what it felt like that I was just getting up every morning, putting on my nice shoes, my slacks and a button-up, and going into work and telling all my coworkers and the people I was meeting out in the field that I was someone I didn’t really feel like,” she explained.
In September 2021, the young journalist decided to attend counselling which led to her to gender-affirming healthcare like hormone therapy.
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Reichardt went on to say that her decision to come out publically was partly due to everyone in her life – except the WOI viewers – knowing about her transition.
“When I made this exact leap of telling the viewers at home that everything was going to be different, that the little name under my headshot is going to look a little different now on air, and I wanted to personally feel as ready as possible to make that jump because there are expectations that come with it,” she continued.
Towards the end of her interview, Anderson asked Reichardt what advice she would give to people looking to better be better trans allies.
“When people tell you who they are, believe them. The very first thing that you tell someone after they come out to you really will dictate the tone of your relationship moving forward, for better or for worse,” she said.
“And I am very fortunate that almost everyone I have told has been nothing but immediately affirming and supportive. Being trans is not a burden. If someone is trusting you with that information, it means that you mean something to them. And they really want to get to share that.”
Watch Reichardt’s inspiring and heartfelt coming-out announcement here or below.