Amid rampant sexism still existing in sports journalism, the likes of Laura Rutledge are more determined to continue making us proud with their skills. For close to a decade, this American journalist has left no stone unturned when it comes to feeding fans with the latest update about their favourite sports activities and players. From hounding bitter coaches for up-to-date injury reports to breaking major stories and doing several underground works to find out everything fans would want to know about their favourite athletes, Laura has not relented in proving her versatility in matters that involve her profession.
Laura currently works as a sports news reporter for CNN International, ESPN and the SEC networks where she covers sports like baseball, basketball, softball, football, and more. Her contributions to the broadcast media industry have earned her a huge reputation among her peers. Let’s take a look at her successful career and how much she has so far made from it.
How Laura Rutledge Became A Sports Reporter – Her Journey So Far
Laura hails from St. Petersburg, Florida, where she received her formal education. She first attended Celebration High School after which she moved to the University of Florida for her Bachelor’s degree in Broadcast Journalism.
Laura, of English-Scottish descent, is one woman who never really saw herself as a journalist. As a child, she loved everything girly, especially makeup and stylish clothes. She also loves to dance, hence, attended ballet classes. During her elementary school days, she also loved fishing and this passion inspired her desire to become a marine biologist in future. Growing much older, she fantasized about becoming a TV star and to fulfil her dreams, she began to prepare herself for beauty pageants.
Meanwhile, Laura’s college football-loving parents and brothers helped to spark off her interest in sports and even though she played no particular kind of sport, she enjoyed watching them. While in high school, she became more convinced that she wants to pursue journalism as a course. During her college days, she joined the school’s ‘WRUF’ radio station to make more income and gain the needed experience for her future career.
Laura landed her first internship at Fox Sports Florida after several failed attempt with broadcasting companies, ESPN and Fox Sports included. At the Florida-based sports station, she was assigned the job of copying DVDs of sports broadcast.
She eventually appeared on the screen for the first time when she was asked to replace a presenter who left over a last-minute conflict with the broadcasting unit. Her performance further opened the path for more opportunities in the industry. Her next on-air job was as a sideline reporter covering Tampa Bay Rays games. Subsequently, she covered more sports-related programs, including the San Diego Padres games. Laura also reported for the Fox College Sports, covering the NCPA’s 2012 National Paintball Championship at Lakeland, Florida.
Laura’s Big Break In the Broadcast Media Industry
2012 marked a huge turning point for the young reporter as she took part in the Miss Florida pageant and was declared the winner on July 7. Although she could not go further to the national level, her participation in the competition further announced her to the public. She covered the National Paintball Championship organized by the National Collegiate Paintball Association.
Laura left Fox Sports for ESPN’s SEC Network in 2014 and worked as a leading sports reporter covering baseball, football, basketball, softball and more. She chose to join SEC because she wanted to cover various sports categories and also report college sports. Given the fact that SEC Network has various sports categories, she couldn’t deny the offer. While working as a reporter, she also worked as the network’s The Paul Finebaum Show.
Laura Rutledge’s Career Achievements, Salary and Net Worth
Sports journalism is one of the well-paid professions in the world and for professionals like Laura Rutledge who have been in the field for almost a decade, their salaries are expected to be huge. Laura’s annual salary is estimated at $400,000 and she is believed to have saved up to a six-digit figure as net worth. Other details about how she spends her money, as well as her investments, have not been revealed yet.
Laura is yet to receive any notable award for her works in broadcast journalism but she isn’t doing badly for herself. Sam Haskell, the CEO and Executive Chairman of the Miss America Organization once congratulated her for her career successes so far. Sam, who claimed to have known Laura since she participated in the 2013 Miss America Competition, described her as one who has integrity, class and a better knowledge of SEC Sports than anyone he knows.
Who is Laura Rutledge Married to?
Laura is married to former professional baseball infielder, Joshua Alan Rutledge. Their marriage started on December 7, 2013, after about two years of dating. Apparently, the two first met at an Alabama baseball tailgate in 2011, when Laura dropped by at the Colorado Rockies with her producer and incidentally, Josh had just been drafted by the baseball team.
Although their relationship didn’t start off immediately, they seemed to be destined for each other. After their first meeting, the two bumped into each other at Zoe’s Kitchen in Birmingham and this time, they had a good talk and subsequently began dating.
Joshua Alan Rutledge was born on April 21, 1989, making him one-year younger than his wife. He was raised in Birmingham, Alabama. He attended Cullman High School, where he played baseball and was a 4-year starter. In 2007, Josh led his team to the state championship.
After high school, he attended the University of Alabama, playing for the Alabama Crimson Tide baseball team. As a freshman, Josh posted amazing stats, becoming the second freshman to lead the team in hitting. In the third round of the 2010 MLB Draft, Josh was selected by the Rockies and in 2015, he was traded to the Boston Red Sox.
Laura and her husband welcomed their first child daughter, Reese Katherine Rutledge, on October 2, 2019. The sports news reporter currently resides with her family in Birmingham, Alabama.
Meet Laura’s Other Family Members
Aside from her husband Joshua Alan, and daughter Reese, Laura is also close to her other family members, including her father Robert McKeeman and mother/adventure partner, Deborah. There are no details about her siblings but we equally are aware of her close relationship with her husband’s family, including his parents Tony and Cheryl Rutledge, and his older brother Michael.