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Jennifer Warner

Jennifer Warner

Senior editor | Mayo Clinic | Class of 1993

She didn't stay long but Jennifer Warner's "addictive" single semester at The Daily Illini wound up inspiring her career calling.

It was the fall of 1989. Warner was a freshman. The DI newsroom, located on Green Street, was "a far cry from stylish newsrooms on TV," says Warner ('93). 

"This was an old-school, open newsroom strewn with piles of newspapers and notebooks stacked in corners, on desks — no cubicles here — and on any surface available.

"There was a constant hum of keyboards clicking, ringing phones — actual phones with buttons and a earpiece that had an attachment that let it rest on your shoulder, leaving your hands free to frantically scribble notes in a narrow spiral notepad. The energy was palpable, and it reeled me in. 

“These were the days before the Google and working remotely. Your desk phone and your feet were the reporter’s most important research tools.

"My favorite memory was one of my first assignments: to accompany a mummy recently purchased by the university’s World Heritage Museum on a trip to Burnham Hospital for a CT scan and MRI.

"That sparked an interest in medical and health journalism that’s taken me from the DI to ABC News in Moscow, where I helped cover President Boris Yeltsin’s secret heart surgery, launching one of the first health news web sites, CBSHealthwatch.com, which was later purchased by WebMD, and now managing health information as senior editor at the Mayo Clinic.”