Kavita Channe is a sports and entertainment host, NFL sideline reporter, and TV personality and producer, who has successfully broken barriers for women and minorities in both media and television. In addition to her accomplishments in the sports and entertainment industry, she has lent herself to many charitable organizations and is a sought-after speaker and actress.
A London native with ancestry from India and Greece, Kavita moved to the US when she was 5 years old, bringing with her goals of creating, entertaining, and performing. Realizing early on that her natural talent and ever-growing opportunities were in front of the camera, she attended the University of Florida, earning a Bachelor's of Science Degree in Journalism and Telecommunications.
Leading up to her impressive career, Channe launched The Procurer, a luxury celebrity concierge and marketing firm in 2007. Shortly after she was asked by a client to regularly interview celebs on the red carpet of his Miami venue. This led to entertainment jobs, which evolved into the national sports broadcasting, celebrity hosting, and entertainment opportunities she still has today.
In 2011, Kavita created her own YouTube channel, 1stDownNDirty. With over 1.6 million views, she interviewed athletes and took viewers behind the scenes of the sports world. That led to an offer by Fox Sports Florida in 2012 to cover high school football games and Florida Panthers broadcasts. By 2014, she had been recruited by the Jacksonville Jaguars to be their sideline reporter. Channe then went on to become the grid-side reporter for NPLG's GRID (the world's first co-ed professional sport) for the 2016 season.
Not only had she become a respected voice in the sports industry, being featured on Mantalk Radio, Fox Sports, and The Chat, but Channe produced and hosted her own "Kavita Channe Special", going one-on-one with sports stars airing on South Florida's VIP TV on The CW.
Beyond sports broadcasting and journalism, Kavita has appeared on television in HBO'sBallers, the Fox reality TV show, Paradise Hotel, and VH1’s Baller Wives. She also worked as a featured correspondent in Designing Spaces on TLC. Kavita has also held roles in feature films, namely Broke: The New American Dream, CHECKPOST, and her latest endeavor, Dependence, set to be released at the end of 2017.
Channe brings a dynamic energy to her many memorable speaking engagements, bringing her talents to the United States, South Africa, Singapore, and beyond. She also frequently partners with nonprofits to lend her voice to reputable organization including the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, American Heart Association, Pediatrics Associates, American Red Cross, and Covenant House, just to name a few.
Going back to when you first started with your career to now, what has been your proudest personal accomplishment?
There have been so many wonderful moments thus far in my career. It’s funny actually… when I was a kid all I wanted to do was fit in and hide my ethnicity because I would get made fun of for being different. However, today I am so proud to be able to say I am the first ever Indian-descent broadcaster to cover an NFL sideline for an NFL team (the Jacksonville Jaguars). Also, being asked to share the cover of Mother & Baby India with my daughter, Micah, and talk about my pregnancy and birth this past year was beyond AMAZING! I will cherish that memory with her forever!
What do you enjoy the most about your work?
I have always been an entrepreneur interested in so many things. I love that I have been able to create a life with a mix of all things I am passionate about. TV broadcasting is one facet… winemaking with our recent launch of Channé Rosé is another… and I truly love being able to work with so many different charities and organizations here in South Florida as well as internationally. If you’re not giving, you’re not living!
Do you have a mentor; someone who has been there to guide you or consult with you when you needed their input?
I am truly lucky to have two amazing sisters with whom we all bounce ideas off of each other for guidance and input all the time. Not saying we always agree with each other’s perspectives, however it has been a Godsend to have them as my sounding board and lifelong best friends.
You are out in the public arena quite often; who is the most interesting person you have ever met?
I did a speaking engagement in Singapore alongside Steve Wozniak, cofounder of Apple. And what a unique and different guy he was! He came across, of course, brilliant however very down to earth and normal. And that mind of his… even the way he spoke was so incredibly intricate.
What do you get the most excited about?
When I can inspire others to follow their dreams no matter how daunting they may seem.
How do you determine which charitable organizations you support?
I have to believe in the organization as a whole… not just their mission, but also their team, their passion and drive and, most importantly, that they are using outside help and funds appropriately.
Is there a charitable event you really look forward to attending each year?
Drown prevention has been a focus of mine since having my daughter, Micah, who we’ve had in swim lessons since four months old. This past year I was able to attend the YMCA’s Beach Ball for the first time ever. They surprised us and showed Micah underwater swimming on their big screens during the ball which, I hope, inspired more parents to get their kids in swim lessons asap. In fact, I am currently co-producing a Water Safety PSA with Micah’s swim coach, Jackie Doyle, to help prevent this terrible fate. We live in Florida where there are pools everywhere and if we can prevent even one child from drowning then it’s all worth it.
How have things changed for you through the years?
Being a new mama has made me a different person with different goals. I have to set even more of an example and, all clichés aside, help make this world a better place.
What is your greatest strength(s) that makes you such an asset?
Having little fear in my pursuits, being persistent and rarely giving up. When I’m on your team, there is almost always a way.
What is your greatest challenge at this time?
Balancing career and young kiddos while still having time for fun and travel. Someone explain how this works!
What is your idea of perfect happiness?
Continued health of my loved ones and myself. Quality time with my people. Oh… and pizza.
What is the most important thing you have learned through the years?
Your health is your wealth. And to BREATH.
How do you relax?
By having a good laugh… getting a massage… or watching a move at home.
Do you have a favorite vacation spot?
I love traveling. Period. Anything new is my favorite.
What do you wish you could have a never-ending supply of?
Unconditional love and health.
If you found a treasure chest – and you could keep it, what would you want to be in it?
A genie who would grant me a wish every quarter.
How can we reach out to other people in the world?
By practicing more compassion. By realizing we are actually all related as humans here on earth.
Is there an inspirational book you have read that you would recommend to others?
I love listening to Deepak Chopra radio on Pandora.
What can make you laugh?
A silly sense of humor.
What can make you cry?
Heartbreak of any kind. Seeing others sad.
Are you where you hoped you would be at this point in your life?
I try to live in the present as much as I can. I definitely feel blessed to be given the opportunity to be a mom and still have a flourishing career. Let’s keep it rollin!
What do you still hope to accomplish?
I hope to help prevent drowning in children. I hope to write a best seller. I hope my kids look up to me one day. I hope to be more patient in life.
Is there a fond childhood memory you can share with us?
The casual one on one conversations I had alone with my grandfather the last few years before he passed away. I asked him about his childhood and actually got to know more about him as a person versus my grandpa.
When you were a little girl, what did you say you wanted to be when you grew up?
A singer. Oprah Winfrey.
What is your vision and hope for the future?
On a grand scale, that we all stop fighting each other and realize that we have to work together to keep this planet a safe place for generations to come.
How do you want to be remembered by future generations?
As a bad ass (pardon the French)!
What do your want your epitaph to read?
Kavita Channe… an all around bad ass who cares as much for others as she does for herself. A spirit who loves her children with every being in her soul… something like that
Do you have a motto, or some words of wisdom, that has guided you through your life?
Dream it. Do it.
What word best describes your life right now?
What charitable organizations are you involved with at this time?
211 Broward, American Heart Association, Miami Diaper Bank, Handy
What is your proudest achievement?
Having Magical Micah as my daughter. She is brilliant, fearless, loads of fun and kind.
What is your fondest childhood memory?
Playing with my sisters all under one roof.
What is something your parents taught you that you will never forget?
Class. And, it’s true, money can’t buy it
If you were to write an autobiography, what would the title of it be?
Dream it. Do it. And so I did.
Who is your hero?
My mom and my grandmother. Mothers get the least credit in the world yet they sacrifice so much.
What is your idea of a perfect vacation?
My family. Fabulous food. Lots of wine. Nature. Adventure.
How do you stay so motivated and committed?
So many dreams yet so little time.
When does someone know when it’s time to move on?
When you stop growing.
What are your favorite leisure activities or hobbies?
Yoga, interesting walks or hikes with someone, happy hours with girlfriends, new restaurants, travel.
What is your favorite sport?
Do you feel women have made progress in their quest to be treated fairly and equally in the workplace?
#MeToo was necessary yet it may have set us back temporarily as men are now scared to be around women in many work settings.
How does the “seasoned” woman compete in a marketplace that is focused on looking and being young?
Reinvention. Figuring out how to make yourself an asset at every age.
Is there a special “aha” moment in your life when you knew “I get it now!”?
The day I stopped caring so much what people thought of me anymore.
Are there any future trends you see in the marketplace -------?
Cable TV may go bye-bye.
You are evidently a very capable and talented woman, what other talent do you wish you had been born with?
I wish I could hit high notes when I sing. More humor.
Is there a saying, motto, or “words to live by” that is your favorite?
Giving is living!
What is the best book you have ever read?
The Giving Tree
What’s the best movie you have ever seen?
I don’t have a “best”, however I LOVED Bohemian Rhapsody this past fall
What three things are always in your refrigerator?
Ketchup, ranch and mayo. I love sauces!!!! Oh and butter. Real butter.
What is your most treasured possession?
What is your greatest indulgence?
Pizza and kissing my daughter too much.
What is your favorite store for clothes shopping?
Lilac and Lillies Boutique in Fort Lauderdale.
Lulus.com for online.
What magazine do you look forward to reading each week/month?
I enjoy our South Florida magazines: Venice, Las Olas, Gold Coast, Lifestyle, etc!
What is your favorite restaurant?
Valentino for Italian. Lobster Bar for seafood. Café Maxx for their caviar pie. Pompano Beach House for casual bites on the beach. Del Frisco’s for their Cheesesteak Egg Roll. Shake Shack for a quick burger. Myapapaya for a fresh and healthy quick lunch. I love to EAT!
What will we find you doing on a Saturday night?
Relaxing. Movie at home or the ipic.
What is your favorite room in your house?
My bedroom. It’s amazing!
If your house was up for sale, and a potential buyer did a walk through, what would your home say about you?
That I like a clean, beautiful, clutter-free and tasteful living space and that I pay attention to detail.
What is your pet peeve?
BS’rs and liars.
What is your greatest strength?
What is your greatest weakness?
What are you most disciplined about?
Being present in my daughter’s daily life and giving her routine and stability.
If there were a movie being made about your life, what actor/actress would best play you?
What is a moment you will never forget?
What is something you have learned from a pet?
How to love selflessly.
If you were going to be on a Space Shuttle for about a year, what one item would you have to take with you?
Wet Wipes. I’m a germophobe.
Do you have a Fashion Addiction?
I buy inexpensive clothes and have them tailored.
What is your favorite snack?
Cheese with apples, grapes or crackers. Salted pistachios. Chips. Milk & cookies.
What is your favorite Ice Cream flavor?
Vanilla & dark chocolate swirl with sprinkles.
What is your biggest fear?
What do you like the most about yourself?
What would you still like to learn how to do?
Krav Maga. Speak French.
What do you have to say to all the young women/men out there ready to take on the future?
Be FEARLESS and RELENTLESS in your life’s pursuits.
How do we get our young people more interested in charitable giving and community volunteering?
Giving back to others is actually one of the keys to happiness and also a great way to network business-wise with your community.
What would you like to see happen in our world, let’s say, five years from now?
Mandatory and free water safety lessons for all children starting from 6 months onwards.
What can we personally do to make things better for future generations?
Listen and understand. Things change and that’s ok.
Kavita, it's my honor to call you my friend.
Sending you and your family all of GODS BLESSINGS.
Leonardo Lenny Zanello Sr.
Lenny Zanello Sr
Thank you for participating in my "Have You Met" feature!