August 9, 2007

Wendy Furrer Covers Business World as CNBC Field Producer

She jets around U.S and abroad to report on major players and events

When asked to describe why they love their careers, many people respond that it’s because every day is different. As a field producer in business news for CNBC, Wendy Furrer really means it.

“I travel a lot, whether it’s to cover business conferences, live news events, or to interview someone for one of the many stories I’m working on at any given time,” says the international affairs and Spanish graduate. “I’m constantly challenging myself and learning something new each day – and every day is different.”

Furrer generates and researches story ideas, arranges and conducts interviews, coordinates logistics for live televised events and taped events, and writes and produces taped segments. She enjoys the challenge of producing interesting stories on a consistent basis.

“[The most demanding aspect is] generating compelling, unique story ideas and then executing them in a visually appealing way so that we can capture the viewers’ interest – and producing visually appealing stories focused on hedge funds and private equity is certainly challenging at times,” she says.

When Amaranth Advisors collapsed in September after losing nearly $6 billion in a single week, Furrer and CNBC reporter Melissa Lee were assigned to cover hedge funds and private equity. They traveled to Bermuda for the MARHedge World Wealth Summit and to Dana Point, Calif., for the Alternative Investing Summit. They also have produced profiles on private equity gurus such as David Rubenstein, founder of The Carlyle Group, and major players in hedge funds such as Jim Simons, president of Renaissance Technologies.

Over the past year, Furrer also has interviewed Herb Kelleher, cofounder and chairman of Southwest Airlines, in Dallas, Texas, for a segment broadcast during CNBC’s Executive Leadership Award ceremony in New York City. She attended the Clinton Global Initiative conference in New York City, where world leaders gathered to discuss innovative solutions to pressing issues like climate change and global health. In Dillon, S.C., she covered Ben Bernanke Day, a hometown celebration of Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke’s achievements.

Furrer credits her undergraduate education with preparing her for a fast-paced career.

“Lafayette’s international affairs program helped me become a more well-rounded person and gave me a global perspective,” she says. “I spent my junior year studying abroad in Seville, Spain, and it was one of the highlights of my college experience. I learned early on how to be resourceful and adaptable. And all of these attributes have served me well thus far. Lafayette provided me with a strong foundation, and I’ve been able to build upon that in order to pursue my career interests.”

After working at Credit Suisse First Boston in foreign exchange after graduation, Furrer returned to Spain to earn her MBA in 2001 from IESE Business School at University of Navarra in Barcelona.

Furrer has remained active in the Lafayette community, serving as class president and class reunion chair. When still a producer at CNN’s New York Bureau, she produced a “Dollar Signs” segment featuring art and American studies graduate Sarah Deitsch ’03.

“Giving back and staying connected to Lafayette has been rewarding,” she says. “Maintaining a strong alumni network ultimately benefits us all in one way or another.”

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