Trouble Shooter Julie Matthews Likes Seeing Results (Profile on Julie Matthews!)

Most people spend their day trying to stay out of trouble. Global Edmonton’s Julie Matthews goes looking for it, on a daily basis. Receiving anywhere from fifty to a hundred emails a day and just as many phone calls to her Trouble Shooter hotline, Matthews keeps a jam-packed schedule.

With only a handful of Trouble Shooter positions available throughout Canadian news outlets the Trouble Shooter is in popular demand. There are up to a hundred calls and emails daily to the Trouble Shooter with problems that range from issues with moving companies to online romance scams.

Matthews got her start in journalism working at the CBC station in Lloydminster, Alberta as a radio and television reporter and anchor. After Lloydminster, she worked at a TV station in Lethbridge and then travelled to Kelowna, B.C to work at a station there.

When the Trouble Shooter position became available at Global Edmonton, Matthews seized the opportunity. She wanted to be closer to her family and fiancé so packed up and returned to Alberta.

Growing up in Bruderheim, Matthews always possessed an interest in public speaking and newspaper print journalism. Matthews was unaware there were courses available to enter into television news. It was a high school guidance counsellor that told Matthews about the Radio and Television Arts program at the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology in Edmonton.

When asked about her job as a consumer advocate on Global and her past jobs as a journalist, Matthews said that with most of her past jobs, there was investigative journalism work she got to work on. When it comes to being a consumer advocate Matthews has said what she enjoys most is getting to meet new people every day and hear them tell their stories. “It’s the results that I can get for people, that is most important to me.”

Matthews approaches her job with diplomacy in mind. “There are two sides to every story. Quite often I end up being a mediator for some situations as they turn out to be misunderstandings.”

Matthews has said that she enjoys doing a variety of consumer stories. She works on everything from consumer education to hard hitting news stories. Her focus however, is on helping people. “If I can do that best with a hard hitting, investigative piece, then I do.”  Yet Matthews also has said that often the everyday problems and frustrations of consumers are best served by news stories that showcase their problem and educate others. “I love the education element.”

With sixteen years of experience in journalism, the thirty-five year old journalist has been with Global Edmonton for seven and a half years. Matthews has no plans currently to leave her job.

Matthews has won a number of awards for her reporting. Most recently were two Alberta Consumer Champion Awards from Service Alberta for stories on protecting car buyers and educating consumers on the processes involved with civil court. When she was working in Kelowna at Global’s sister station CHBC, she earned herself a regional Radio-Television News Directors Association award for a story she did into life on the front lines with a forest fire attack crew.

Matthews has said one of the things she enjoys about her job is getting to see things through. Being a consumer advocate Matthews has the chance to see situations come to resolution. At times she can also get to see any follow up that needs to be made, to a story she has worked on.

“I have fallen in love with my job as a trouble shooter. I can’t really see myself in any other job.”

Matthews includes her reporting on internet romance scams and the Taber school shooting as some of the more memorable stories she has covered as a reporter.

Matthews grew up watching Global Edmonton, then ITV. During her time away from her work at Global, her family operates its own business. Matthews also has two young sons that keep her busy.

Helping others is what motivates Matthews to continue her work as Global Edmonton’s Trouble Shooter.

“For every unpleasant person I have to deal with, there are many more wonderful and thankful consumers who are very happy that I do the work that I do.  I do this job for them.”

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