Obstacles and unexpected turns are almost a certainty in life, but if it weren’t for those hitches, new opportunities may never present themselves. Former KHNL news anchor Diane Ako has embraced and welcomed many new and exciting aspects into her life over the past year.
After the KHNL 8 and KGMB 9 television station merger in August 2009, Ako found herself without a job, but she took it in stride and got involved with new hobbies and aspirations. “After the layoffs everything changed, except for who I am. I was enjoying being at home with my 3-year-old daughter Olivia,” says Ako, who was hired in September as director of public relations for Halekulani Hotel. “I am pretty domestic. I enjoy cooking,” she adds. “I’m like June Cleaver. I actually took seven months of cake decorating classes.”
Ako, who was featured on MidWeek‘s cover in March 2001, has embarked on another new venture this past year, taking a small acting part in the new CBS television series Hawaii Five-0. Ako will play, appropriately enough, a television news reporter named Meredith Michaels.
This will be Ako’s first acting role, and she found the experience much different than being behind the camera doing news. “In news, I have bullet points, a small script and there is some freedom after that, she says. “With television acting, you have to memorize everything word for word, even the dialogues of the characters who speak before and after you. You have to hit the mark much more precisely than in news reporting. We would shoot a scene that would take maybe five minutes for news, but it would literally take five hours on a television set.”
Ako doesn’t plan to become a full-time actor, but if another opportunity were presented, she says she would probably take it. “It was a lot of fun. I played against Alex O’Loughlin and Scott Caan, so the time pretty much flies by when you’re standing between two hunks like that,” Ako says with a laugh.
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