Posted by madcityradio.com on September 24, 2009 at 19:16:05:
WISC�TV�s anchor opens up about her adopted hometown, personal style and surprising name change
By Shayna Miller
/From Madison Magazine/
"This is the longest I�ve ever lived anywhere, and Madison is now considered my hometown,� says Susan Siman, sixteen-year veteran anchor at WISC�TV, who currently co-helms the Live at Five and six o� clock newscasts. �Like everyone who comes here, I thought Madison was a stepping stone. But then you stay here, and you�re like a barnacle. This city and this station are hard to leave.�
And that�s what you get with Siman when you speak with her�witticisms thrown in here and there, along with a few self-deprecating comments that make you realize that she�s pretty normal�a working mom, news journalist and woman of substance.
Growing up, Siman�s dad was an Amoco exec (and interestingly, a former Navy SEAL) so her family moved every few years�including overseas to Geneva, Switzerland and Hong Kong, where she graduated from high school. She counts those experiences as ones that shaped her character.
�Moving around so much was hard. But it gave me more of a world view, I think.�
That includes tackling those snarky comments from viewers who are, she says, �almost always well intentioned.�
�When it comes to appearance comments, you have to take it with a grain of salt and realize it�s just human nature. Most people I think are honestly trying to help.� Addressing a common viewer question, Siman wants viewers to know that �yes, we do our own hair, our own makeup, we pick out our own clothing. We have no one to blame but ourselves!� she jokes.
On-camera Siman says she tends to be conservative in her outfit choices. �If I don�t wear a blazer, I hear about it. There is an assumption that the six p.m. newscast is serious.�
Off camera, a favorite buy was an LBD (little black dress) from Jan Byce a number of years ago. �I found THE dress. I�m going to wear it to death! It�s so versatile�I can wear it on-air and to events, too.� About her cover look Siman notes, �I loved the jacket instantly�I love bright colors. You would never see something like it in my wardrobe, but it�s a good starting point for me to being more adventurous!�
After work it�s casual: �I take my makeup off, throw on jeans and a sweatshirt and hop on my bike with my son [Matthew, age ten] and off we go,� she says.
Siman says that early in her career a news director advised her to shorten her last name of Simanaitis. �He thought it sounded like a disease,� says Siman, who joked about running a funny campaign that said �Simanaitis�catch it!� So, voila, Susan Siman was born.
�Siman is just my alias,� she laughs.
�I�ve never really had a really expensive pair of shoes or handbag. I watch Sex and the City and I fantasize about having a pair of Manolo Blahniks or Jimmy Choos. That would be fun.�
Ed�s pick: Because of her schedule, Siman needs a stylish, roomy and versatile handbag. Derek Lam�s timeless �Catia� hobo is just the answer. The antiqued gold hardware and tasseled front tie are fun additions. $1,350, shopbop.com.
�It is harder for a woman in this industry, I think. But the irony is that the older a woman gets, the more interesting she is!�
Ed�s pick: A woman of any age can sport a fun necklace to add that special something to her look�whether she�s in front of thousands of viewers or out to dinner. Faux pearl necklace, $34, Francesca�s Collections.
�I love bright colors. I felt good in the jacket [on the cover].�
Ed�s pick: Bright colors are the key for Siman�s fair hair and complexion. A yellow raincoat for fall is perfect to make her look pop. �SunShower� raincoat, $79.50, landsend.com.
Shayna Miller is associate and style editor of Madison Magazine.
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