Although bacterial meningitis took 100% of Elena LaQuatra's hearing and balance at age four, she didn't let that hold her back.
After extreme rehabilitative measures, including numerous surgeries, Elena now hears with a Cochlear Implant. She attended the DePaul School for Hearing and Speech in Pittsburgh for four years to regain her listening and spoken language skills.
She was a "theater kid," performing in over two dozen musicals throughout the tri-state region. She danced her entire life, winning numerous awards for choreography. And she performed as a member of the Mt. Lebanon Percussion Ensemble.
Elena spent her teenage years competing in pageants, winning the prestigious titles of Miss Pennsylvania's Outstanding Teen in 2007 and Miss Pennsylvania Teen USA in 2010. In 2016, she held the title of Miss Pennsylvania USA and represented the state at the Miss USA pageant televised live on FOX from Las Vegas.
She graduated from Point Park University, obtaining her Bachelor of Arts degree in Broadcast Communications. Shortly after, she landed her first job as a Digital Video Reporter for Pittsburgh's online lifestyle and entertainment channel, 4the412 for WTAE-TV. She is now happy to be a General Assignment Reporter at JET 24 and FOX 66.
Her greatest passions include traveling, volunteering, eating Nutella, and playing with her Chihuahuas, Miki and Taco. Feel free to share story ideas and news tips with Elena at firstname.lastname@example.org.