Veteran TV news reporter Toya Washington, currently one the anchor of the marquee 5 pm newscast at Milwaukee’s WISN, took to Facebook this week to hit back against an anonymous letter that criticizes her choice of attire and says she might be “feeling (her) age.”
Washington posted a photo of the March 7 letter, which offers some kind words but also a “suggestion:”
“Lately, your style of dress has become ‘more revealing,’ and ‘less professional’. You have always done a very good job, and there’s no reason to wear what appeared to be a ‘camisole’ (2/24/2017) to increase ratings.”
The letter then suggests that Washington should imitate what the other female anchors and reporters wear. The letter mentions the other reporters by their initials, seemingly referring to Joyce Garbaciak, Kathy Mykleby, Adrienne Pederson, Christina Palladino, Hillary Mintz, Lindsey Slater, Sally Severson and Colleen Henry — all of whom always dress appropriately, according to the letter.
All of the reporters mentioned by initials in the letter are white. The anonymous letter writer did not mention the initials of Melinda Davenport, who is African American — as is Washington.
“This is laughable my friends,” Washington wrote in her Facebook post. She wrote that WISN earns its ratings “with the QUALITY of our product. Not with personal stunts. So no…one-less-button isn’t my style. It’s beneath me.”
She wrote that she’s struggling to accept the “buried compliments” in the letter.
“I’ll continue to ‘keep up the good work’ regardless of your opinions,” she wrote. “And no, I won’t be changing my style.
“Now I need to remember what I wore on 2/24…so I can wear it again.”
Before joining WISN in 2002, Washington spent six years as a reporter with WISC-TV3 in Madison.