Julie Watts is a national-award-winning investigative journalist who is dedicated to holding the powerful accountable, getting answers, and digging deeper into the issues that matter to you.
Julie's work has prompted FDA recalls, state and federal investigations, and laws to protect families and taxpayers.
In addition to being the investigative reporter, Julie is a News Anchor and Meteorologist (AMS) at CBS Sacramento.
Her investigative reports also air on the CBS stations in San Francisco and Los Angeles and are often distributed nationwide.
The 13-time Emmy® Award-winning journalist has also been honored with many prestigious national journalism awards including a Society of Professional Journalists Sigma Delta Chi award and multiple National Press Club, National Headliner, and Gracie awards. Julie's work has also garnered more than a dozen regional awards including Associated Press and Edward R. Murrow Awards.
Most recently, Julie was honored with a National Press Club Award and an Emmy® Award for . The 14-month investigation was prompted by whistleblowers inside California's $1.7B COVID testing lab. The reporting led to , , and on that it appeared state regulators
In 2021, Julie received an Emmy® Award for her investigation into "State-Sponsored Identity Theft." The five-year investigation held the state's unemployment agency (EDD) accountable for putting millions at risk of identity theft. The reporting prompted a , a state audit, and .
Julie first exposed the issue while working at CBS in San Francisco and she was previously honored with an Edward R. Murrow Award for her early reporting on the issue.
Julie was also the recipient of an Emmy® Award and an Edward R. Murrow Award in 2020 for her reporting on theand a National Headliner Award for her investigation into the .
In 2020, Julie received an Emmy® Award for "Troubling Water: The Ripon Child Cancer Investigation." After four children were diagnosed with cancer at one school, parents initially blamed a cell tower on campus. Then, the CBS13 investigation revealed a history of cancer-causing chemicals in the city's water, exposed glaring errors and omissions in city water reports, and uncovered evidence that the school district knew about the chemicals in school drinking water but failed to tell parents.
In 2016, Julie's "Toxic Safety" investigation into car seat flame retardants prompted multiple recalls and led to significant changes within the child car seat industry. The investigation was honored with the National Gracie Award for Best Investigative Feature, the National Press Club's Award for Consumer Journalism, and the Society of Professional Journalists Sigma Delta Chi Award for Public Service.
In 2014, the investigative series "UN-Covered California" earned Julie her first National Press Club Award for Consumer Journalism. The reports exposed numerous flaws within California's health insurance exchange and prompted action by state regulators and changes within the insurance industry.
Prior to her role as investigative reporter/anchor at CBS in Sacramento, Julie spent a decade at CBS in San Francisco as the station's Consumer-Investigative Reporter and a contributing reporter for CBS News where her stories were distributed to CBS stations across the country.
Julie was also a news anchor and Meteorologist (AMS) at KPIX. She was named Best News Anchor by the Associated Press for her role as anchor and host of the KPIX weekend morning show and she won the American Meteorological Society's prestigious award for "Excellence in Science Reporting by a Broadcast Meteorologist" while at KPIX.
Prior to that, Julie earned her meteorology credentials (AMS Seal) from the American Meteorological Society while working at KCRA 3 in Sacramento. In addition to weekend weather, she covered everything from cooking segments to creepy critters while hosting the "KCRA Noon Show Live from the Arden Fair Mall."
Nationally, Julie appeared as a host on TLC's "Designing Spaces" and was an entertainment reporter/producer for BBC & Reuters-TV in Los Angeles.
Julie began her news career as a Traffic Anchor, Weather Anchor, and Reporter for CBS-47 in Fresno. She was also the voice of news and traffic each morning on the Central Valley's Clear Channel radio stations.
Julie earned a B.A. in Broadcast Journalism and an M.A. in Online Journalism from the University of Southern California. At her USC commencement ceremony, she was named Graduate Student of the Year.
In an effort to tell stories that might not otherwise be told, Julie often finds herself behind the camera. She shoots, edits, and produces special projects while traveling overseas. Her work as a Multi-Media/Video Journalist (MMJ/VJ) has taken her from Sierra Leone to India and has also won several awards.
Outside of work, Julie is active in several non-profits and has spent more than a decade on the Board of Governors for the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences (NATAS). As the Emmy® Awards Chair and Gala Chair, Julie oversaw the regional Emmy® Awards competition for several years. Julie has also planned and produced five Emmy® Awards galas over the past 10 years, including the first-ever virtual Emmy® Awards ceremony in 2020, which was used as a template for other NATAS regional ceremonies throughout the pandemic.
Julie was born and raised in the Bay Area but met and married her husband while working in Sacramento the first time around. After nearly a decade in San Francisco, they were thrilled to return to the Sacramento area in 2019 to raise their family.
Julie goes by NewsMom on social media where she shares how she's using the knowledge and resources she's developed as an investigative reporter to navigate life as a mom. Through a combination of #MomLife posts on Instagram and #NewsYouCanUse on Facebook, Julie prides herself on investigating the topics and products that most moms would investigate… if they had the investigative resources.
for more features.