Denise D'Ascenzo is a 11-time Emmy award-winning broadcast journalist who has also earned distinction as the longest-serving news anchor at a single television station in Connecticut.
You will find her weekdays on Channel 3, anchoring the 5:00 PM, 5:30 PM and 6:00 PM newscasts.
Denise came to WFSB-TV in 1986, and through the years has been a steady and reassuring presence on the anchor desk, covering all the major local and national news stories of the day. She has also traveled to provide special coverage of such events as 1988 Republican National Convention, the U.S. visit of Pope John Paul the II, the crash of United flight 232 and the arrest of the Washington, DC sniper. In addition to local and national political leaders, Denise has interviewed a number of celebrities, including Paul Newman, Bob Hope, Tony Bennett and Oprah Winfrey.
Denise also has a passion for health and medical reporting. She has taken viewers inside operating rooms, cardiac catheterization labs, neonatal intensive care units, as well as onboard Life Star, the critical care helicopter service. Denise has long been a leading voice across Connecticut in raising greater awareness of such conditions as breast cancer, heart disease, obesity and disease prevention.
In addition to 11 Emmys, including an Emmy for Best Anchor, Denise's work has also been honored with two prestigious Edward R. Murrow awards, seven Associated Press awards, and a national Gabriel Award. She has also been recognized for her work with a number of charities including the Muscular Dystrophy Association, Mary's Place and the Channel 3 Kids Camp.
It was a marriage that brought Denise to Connecticut from Cleveland, Ohio where she anchored the top rated 6:00 and 11:00 newscasts at WJKW-TV. Before Cleveland, Denise worked in St. Louis as a reporter and talk show host at KSDK-TV. But the city that launched her career was Syracuse, New York. Denise landed her first television job at WIXT-TV in Syracuse, doing the nightly weather forecast while she finished her senior year at Syracuse University. Upon graduating Magna Cum Laude with dual degrees in broadcast journalism and political science, Denise was hired full time as a reporter and weathercaster.
Denise became interested in journalism as a young child. She was born in Washington, DC and grew up in suburban Rockville, Maryland. At the age of 12, Denise launched the first newspaper at her grammar school. She went on to become editor-in-chief of her high school newspaper and the first person to receive a scholarship from the American Newspaper Women's Club to attend a summer journalism program at the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.
In 2013, Denise was elected to the Silver Circle, a prestigious honor bestowed by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences for significant contributions to broadcasting. Two years later, she became the first woman to be inducted into the Connecticut Broadcasters Association Hall of Fame. Denise was also awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Quinnipiac University.
Denise and her husband, Wayne have a daughter, Kathryn. In her free time, Denise enjoys family outings, swimming, and hiking with her dogs.