Born in Southern California and raised in Phoenix, Cristiana is a proud Mexican and Salvadorian. She takes a lot of pride in her heritage because everyone who came before paved the way for her to be where she is.
She came from a long line of Chingonas! Cristiana's grandmother from her father’s side migrated to the U.S. from El Salvador to provide better for her kids. She did that on her own, opening up her own business while being a single mother. Cristiana's grandmother on her mom’s side was a civil rights activist. She was even a bodyguard for Cesar Chavez and a journalist during the Farm Worker’s Movement in the 60s. Her mom raised Cristiana, her two brothers and her sister by herself. Cristiana says it’s because of her mom's sacrifices, resiliency, and unconditional love that she was able to chase her dreams and live them out.
She didn’t have a lot growing up but says her family had what they needed. Cristiana and her mother would watch Arizona's Family every morning for as long as she could remember, even if it was just playing for background noise while getting ready. Her mom would always say, “Babygirl, that’s going to be you one day.” And when she got the job, her mother said, “I told you so.”
Broadcast Journalism is something she's known she wanted to pursue since she was in elementary school, when she loved to write, make films and tell stories. Cristiana joined the school announcements in elementary school and that’s where it all started.
Cristiana graduated from Moon Valley High School in Phoenix. After that, She later attended Northern Arizona University and received a bachelor’s degree in Social and Behavioral Sciences with a major in Broadcast Journalism and a double minor in Civic Engagement and Creative Media and Film. She also graduated Summa Cum Laude as a first-generation college student.
While in college, she worked for NAU-TV as a sports sideline reporter for NAU football and basketball. She was an anchor, reporter and student forecaster at NAZ Today, a student-run station in Flagstaff. She reported and anchored the show, and won a Broadcast Education Association Award for Best Newscast.
She started her career right out of college in the midst of the pandemic in Beaumont, Texas where she was a multi-skilled journalist and weather forecaster. Cristiana covered a number of historical weather events like Hurricanes Laura, Delta, Ida, Tropical Storm Nicholas and The Great Texas Freeze. She also provided live coverage in Uvalde after the tragic school shooting. During my time there, I won Best On-Air Talent for the 2022 Press Club of Southeast Texas Awards.
Cristiana is passionate about helping others which has inspired her to shine a light on problems within her community while finding solutions. She is a huge advocate for underrepresented communities, giving them a platform to be seen and heard. She wants to make a positive impact and authentic, meaningful connections with her community.
In her spare time, Cristiana loves to be outdoors, trying new places to eat, and hanging out with her fur babies and family. She has three dogs and one cat and dreams about adding a big ol' pot-bellied pig to her family. Cristiana is a very active person and fitness is a major part of her life. She used to be a certified personal trainer and wellness coach, dancer, cheerleader and cross-country runner.