Josina Anderson is known for her work as an NFL insider, most prominently breaking news and interviewing star athletes and celebrities on ESPN. But after her departure from the network in August, she's "green lighting" herself with the launch of her new show, Undefined With Josina Anderson.
"The purpose of Undefined for myself and everyone else is to remind ourselves we are not who we work for," Anderson told The Big Lead. "We can greenlight ourselves from someone collecting a check to writing a check."
After a quick turnaround of a month and a half of working on this project, Anderson launched her new website and the first episode of the show on Thursday. It features an interview with newly-signed Giants running back Devonta Freeman, actor Morris Chestnut, and comedians Roy Wood Jr. and Kevin Fredericks, also known as Kev On Stage.
Anderson's goal with the show, which can be consumed in video form or as a podcast, is to expand her portfolio from being known primarily as an NFL insider to being known simply as an engaging host with interesting guests. She'll lean heavily into what she's best known for -- getting insider intel firsthand from the athletes -- but as the name Undefined suggests, neither she nor her guests will be put in a box.
"Anyone who comes on my show doesn't have to be defined by what they're currently known for," Anderson said. "We can have a conversation beyond that."
Anderson said future guests could include anyone from a politician to a musician to a pastor to a ballerina. The topics she covers will, likewise, vary based on the guest and social situations developing around the world. At the same time, Anderson's biggest strength remains her close, personal relationships with athletes. She plans on leveraging that strength to procure quick interviews with them in the immediate aftermath of whatever big just happened in their life -- à la the Freeman interview after he signed with the Giants.
"When you're on TV and you're on a network, and obviously I'm not opposed to that and will do that [in the future]... You're on for whatever time slot they tell you you're on," Anderson said. "For me in the studio I've built, I can go into the studio and be on when I want to be on."
Anderson's official departure from ESPN happened at the end of August, though she had been off-screen for four months at that point. She said she turned down a few on-screen opportunities since and is not currently in talks with any network about a role as she focuses on this project. She is open to a return to network broadcasting, but only under the right circumstances.
"I'm definitely open to being on the air, but I want to be paid my worth," Anderson said. "I know what it is that I bring to the table. There are only a few people that an athlete is going to call them right away and break news. I do feel like I deserve to be on a desk and I deserve to be paid like my male counterparts."
For now, Anderson's sole focus is on building a successful show. She had plenty of help getting it off the ground and was thankful for it. But at the end of the day, she knows the results will be dictated by her abilities as a host, breaking news reporter, talent acquisition specialist and everything else that comes with launching a new venture on the strength of your name.
"I've been in the business for over 20 years as a talent and over that time I've been blessed to have many opportunities across the country," Anderson said. "The focus now is harvesting and aggregating all of my resources and contacts and feeding that into my own venture."
It's an educated bet and Anderson is making it on herself.