KSHB 41’s Christa Dubill Embraces Change and the Amazing Chaos of Family Life
Christa Dubill is a face you likely recognize: As one of the evening anchors at 41 Action News, she’s entered your home nightly for five years to fill you in on the latest local and national news. So it was something of a treat to flip this scenario and be invited inside the Dubill home to learn more about this active Johnson County family.Born on Barksdale Air Force Base in Bossier City, La., Christa grew up in Kansas and attended the University of Kansas, where she interned at KSHB 41. As with most journalists, she moved around for the beginning of her career, but her aim was always to return home to this area. After stints in Iowa and Wisconsin, Christa and her husband, David, made their dream move back to Kansas City in 2007 with their son Andrew.“My goal was always to get back before Andrew started school,” says Christa. “He was 2 1/2 when we moved back.”The intervening years have been good ones for the family, with the addition of Ryan, now 5. With two young boys, Christa and David stay busy, balancing careers and all the chaos inquisitive little ones bring.
“Andrew is kind to his core, follows rules, gets straight A’s, is slow to wake in the morning, and loves his iPod,” says Christa. “He’s an extremely laidback 10-year-old and doesn’t move fast for much. Ryan is happy and sweet and has boundless energy. He’s instantly awake the moment he opens his eyes in the morning. Everything Ryan says is unexpected and hilarious.”
Christa credits her husband for helping keep things moving along smoothly in the evenings while she’s been at work. David loves taking the boys on adventures, whether it’s Royals and Sporting KC games, events at the Sprint Center, playing basketball or baseball, and working on their “collections” (right now it’s Royals bobble heads).
“David’s a spreadsheet kind of guy,” Christa says with a laugh. “He uses them at work and is always working to put our lives in a spreadsheet…like baseball schedules, soccer schedules, finances, etc. The problem is, I’m not a spreadsheet kind of person. I’m much more visual. My notes are scribbled all over pages. I tried recently to go from my coveted paper planner to a digital one in my phone. I’m still struggling, but getting better.”
And given that Andrew and Ryan like to play on “anything as a team,” the family’s calendar is packed with baseball, soccer, basketball, and other sports, while Christa and David are both active with various non-profits. Precious free time is spent riding bikes, swimming, taking road trips, and enjoying snow cones and movies.
“David is my center,” Christa says. “I can find myself stressing about a big story at work or feeling a bit overwhelmed at balancing all I tend to pack in a day or a week, but it’s David who somehow finds a way to help me over hurdles, be more organized, or he takes a few things off my plate so I don’t feel so busy. He’s the reason I’ve been able to do what I do.”
And what Christa does is in the midst of change. Starting mid-August, when Ryan starts kindergarten, Christa will shift her schedule to 9:30 to 6:30 each weekday—meaning you’ll still see her on the 4 and 6 p.m. evening news, but not the 10.
“I love the 10 p.m. news—and I mean I LOVE it. We have such a great team. However, with my youngest starting school this fall, I couldn’t keep working the late news. I struggled with this…and still do a little bit. While I can’t even put into words how excited I am to be home with my family, it doesn’t mean I don’t still struggle with leaving a newscast and crew I love, not to mention the people who watch at 10.”
Devoted to her job, Christa thinks highly of her viewers. “I think of the news like sitting with family. We have an incredible team of people who work all day to gather important information to share in newscasts and online. I think of our team as your personal information resource. We gather, read, collect and decipher important things happening each day, and then put them into an informative, organized format easy for you to quickly get caught up.”
Still, with this move Christa hopes to better find that “magic middle” where she can balance the needs of work and family. Like any busy, devoted momma, she knows that while the days are long, the years are short. And she doesn’t want to miss any of the little things.
“This way,” she says, “I will be home each evening to make dinner, read books, do homework, and cuddle with the boys as they fall asleep.”
“Then,” she adds with a smile, “I’ll turn on the 10 o’clock news.”