YPDaily: Melissa Grelo

Thousands of Torontonians start their day with Melissa Grelo, Co-Host of CP24 Breakfast. The gorgeous 33-year-old Grelo informs and entertains Toronto’s weary-eyed viewers as they sip the first of several caffeine injections and find out what’s going on in the world around them. Always with a smile on her face and a commitment to bringing CP24 Breakfast‘s viewers the news in style, this York U and Seneca College alum is a very notable Young Professional. Learn more about Melissa Grelo in today’s YPDaily.

Elevator Pitch: Describe your job in a nutshell.
I help get Torontonians ready for the day ahead by delivering news, entertainment and everything in between Monday to Friday mornings on CP24 Breakfast.

Why did you decide to work in television? What was the inspiration for this career route?
After leaving the Masters of Education program at University of Toronto, suffering from burnout after years of schooling and teaching, it was Mary Hart of Entertainment Tonight that spoke to me through the television. Looking for inspiration, I found it by seeking the advice of a business coach and watching Mary and decided, I’m going to be on television one day. It was actually a 6-month process to get to the point where I knew that journalism was the path I wanted to follow. I was always a news and pop culture/entertainment junkie, but never thought about a career in industry. Once I started to explore the idea, everything started to click, the passion was lit and the rest is history.

What is the best part of what you do on a day-to-day basis? The most challenging part?
The best part of my job is meeting people from all walks of life – athletes, actors, musicians, singers, artists, politicians – and bringing their stories and adventures to our viewers. I also enjoy meeting fans of CP24 Breakfast. I love that they feel like I’m their girlfriend or sister and bring stories to them that I find interesting. The most challenging part of the job is the hours. I wake up at 3:30 in the morning Monday to Friday. That’s been a tough challenge considering I’m really a night owl. Don’t get me wrong, I love mornings as well, but the transition was not easy. It’s a sacrifice, but one that is well worth what it gives back to me.

What is the most memorable milestone in your career?
The highlight of my career thus far was co-hosting CTV’s Olympic Morning at the 2010 Vancouver Winter Games in Whistler, BC. It is a dream realized for any journalist or broadcaster to be able to cover the Olympics, but to do so on Canadian soil with a roster of athletes second to none was exhilarating! I was able to witness history in the making firsthand and bring the stories of our athletes to Canadians across the country.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
I feel like my journey in the amazing world of television has only just begun. There are so many mountains yet to climb and milestones to achieve. In five years, I hope to reach a national platform with a show like CP24 Breakfast. I am able to showcase all sides of myself – the news anchor, the reality show and pop culture junkie, and the storyteller.

What does success look like to you?
Success to me is following your passion and “following your bliss.” As cliché as it may sound, discovering and then fulfilling what you were put on this earth to do is my definition of success. It’s not monetary. It’s not a selfish pursuit, as it may seem. It’s a recognition that you do the world no good by being small. We all have something of value to contribute to the world and once we discover what that something is, we’ve succeeded.

Do you have any advice for other young professionals?
Strike while the iron is hot. Start with the building blocks in your field – education, experience, more education, and more experience. Set clear goals of what you’d like to attain, both in the near future and beyond. Use the power of visualization. Imagine yourself achieving your goals. It seems silly, but try it. It’s very powerful. I imagined myself delivering the news, interviewing big newsmakers, practising what I’d ask, etc. When the opportunities started to arise, I felt like I had already been there, doing it all along.

Do you support any charities? If so, which one(s) and why is that important to you?
I am a firm believer that when you are lucky enough to catch a big break, or to receive the mentorship and guidance from a veteran, or achieve any level of success in your chosen field, you have the obligation of returning the favour back to your community and to society at large. I am the ambassador of a wonderful organization called Artbound. It’s a group of young professionals in Toronto that work to build schools in developing nations in support of Free the Children. After a hugely successful inaugural year building a school in Kenya, our next projects include returning to Kenya and building a new school in India. The work is extremely gratifying and allows me to feel a sense of connection with our global community. It’s very fulfilling to work with a passionate team of the city’s most creative minds. We’ve got lofty goals for the next two years and I’m confident we’ll meet then surpass them with flying colours!

What is Notable to you?
Young people making a difference. I think that achieving success in your career and personal life go hand-in-hand with giving back to your community. A person who is successful and whole is someone who can live life to the fullest. To me that is often a fine balancing act of all spheres of your life and shining while doing it all. That’s Notable.