Communication is the key says veteran television reporter Tina Altieri

TINA ALTIERI relishes her much-varied life, commuting between Singapore and Perth, speaking to audiences across Asia, while maintaining focus on her Singapore and Perth families.

Coming up for 30 years as a media performer, the veteran television presenter/reporter has developed a thriving communications business, advising corporate leaders how to deliver successful presentations and best present their messages.

Fresh from advising Chinese corporate captains, Tina is in Perth to speak with business leaders before heading back home to Singapore, putting aside time to speak with Have a Go News.

“My focus is always family first, the most important aspect of all,” she says.

“My work is my other love and yes, I have a hugely supportive and understanding husband. We talk often with our boys about the value of work, about commitment and pouring your passion in everything we do. I hope these conversations stick because it’s what we really believe in.”

Hubby Stephen is a business consultant, born in Singapore and educated in Perth.

Sons Jackson, 10, and Sam, 4, go to school in Singapore.

During every school holidays, including Christmas, they are all back in Perth, catching up with Tina’s mum, brother Dominic and his family.

Twice a year, Tina – still a favourite with TV networks – fills-in for Monika Kos on Seven’s Today Tonight.

There are also occasional TV specials for Tina to tackle.

At 48, Tina hopes to be able to maintain her energy and interest but says the variety in her life is a factor in her positive outlook.

“I am a working mum but I’m so lucky to be able to do what I love and to have the family we have,” she said.

Tina went to Singapore as a teenager on her first overseas jaunt and was stunned by the bright lights and the diverse cultures of South-East Asia.

She felt she would always have some connection and keeps a foot firmly-planted in each country.

Tina’s diary in corporate communications is kept full without her ever having to advertise or promote herself.

“It’s been word-of-mouth. The business is just me and a ridiculously small home office and I have some very loyal clients who reach out when they need me. It’s all about the relationships I’ve built over the past decade.”

The girl from Girrawheen High School studied broadcasting at WAAPA and began her career as a radio reporter at 6IX News.

Tina joined the Channel Ten Eyewitness News team, the youngest newsreader in Australia at 19.

She read news on Channel Nine for 11 years before heading to Sydney to present Sky News Australia for two years.

Her assignments for Seven included a travel and lifestyle series called The Wonders of Western Australia and a special on Bali. Tina also supports Seven’s Telethon.

Audiences and viewers can relate to Tina, always unflappable before the cameras.

Guided by her mentor and friend Ann Conti, who was reading Channel Nine’s news at the time, Tina stood in for Peter Waltham when he left Channel Nine.

She presented news alongside Liam Bartlett, Terry Willesee and Peter Holland.

Passionate about communicating effectively, Tina has the runs on the board to train leaders in businesses around Australia and Asia on how to present and pitch more powerfully.

She is often called to be guest speaker at conferences around the world, including the International Congress and Convention Association mega event (around 2000 delegates) and is a conference MC veteran.

Tina says the media landscape has changed dramatically in the years she’s been in TV but despite criticism there is still a lot to be positive about.

“Things are just not what they used to be and the challenge is in finding new ways to connect and engage with our audiences.

“I’m always heartened when I see experienced reporters and presenters on the job. It’s important to have a mix in any newsroom.

“As a junior reporter, I grew tremendously from learning from well-worn, senior journos who understood the craft beautifully. I think it’s our role – as experienced reporters – to pass that on.

“I might see a young presenter or reporter make a mistake but then I realise that person was exactly like me when I started. Anxious, eager to please, nervous about making a hideous mistake on live TV – we’ve all been there.

“We owe it to the industry to help the new ones, the up and comers.

“I’m fortunate. I’m doing what I love. I still have the passion for television. If you don’t have the passion, I’m convinced it shows,” she said.

Tina is active but no gym junkie or committed jogger.

“I like to swim and do yoga. I’m not great at it but I enjoy it and whether you’re in Perth or Singapore there is never a shortage of places to swim or spots to lay a yoga mat.”

Tina has long adapted to Singapore’s heat.

“I sometimes miss the cool, crisp air of winter but I can get back to Perth often enough and enjoy its special freshness. Luckily, I don’t get too homesick. There are a lot of Singapore-Perth links,” she said.

Tina says she always had a love of talking and communicating. At 14 she saw her future as telling stories either as a journalist or a teacher.

“Being a journalist is a good way of doing that,” says Tina.