Renel Brooks-Moon Interview: Former Radio Personality Breaks Barriers as Baseball Announcer
Diana Landau | February 01, 2022
This week Carl interviews the remarkable Renel Brooks-Moon. If you haven't heard of her, you probably know her famous voice. Renel has been a big-time radio personality in the San Francisco/Bay Area for over two decades, one of the major markets in the country. For her second act, she is now the public address announcer for the San Francisco Giants. She has earned a spot in the Baseball Hall of Fame as the first woman in history to be the public address announcer for a World Series game and championship game in ANY professional sport. (Note: Carl has a super-fan gush going on in this interview.)
Renel was born and raised in the Bay Area and loved to entertain, even as a young child. She comes from a family of trailblazers—her father was the first black high school principal in San Francisco and her mother was also an educator. She gets her deep sense of community service from her parents, who were long-time community activists. She went to Mills College and after graduation started an entry-level job for a Bay Area radio station, eventually doing every single job there. “I fell in love from Day One,” she tells us. She was finally offered a nightspot on air in 1985, not expecting it to ever become a career. But everything clicked. “Once I turn on that microphone, it’s where I belong!”
Renel went on to have a very successful career in radio, meeting Luther Vandross, Mariah Carey, Tina Turner and even singing once with Lionel Richie. Renel was in her element. When she got the call from the San Francisco Giants, she blazed a trail again. She feels a responsibility to be a role model for girls and women in both radio and major league sports. “When I was a little girl, there was no representation for that.” She inspires little girls everywhere to go after their dreams. Renel notes, “For some reason, I ended up in two very male-dominated professions, but I love the work.”
She’s had many highlights in her second act, whether it’s making history, interviewing baseball legends or giving her voice and influence to community service. Now, after 22 seasons with the Giants, Carl asks her what her third act might be. “Who knows? I've always wanted to have my own talk show!” We won't be surprised when that happens.
Renel’s (Un)Retirement Tips:
• Network: “Networking is very important, no matter what your career is or where you are in it. Every job I've had is because of a relationship.”
• Serve your community: "The most rewarding part of any job I've had is to use my voice for community service.”
• Try it now: "If you've had something you've always wanted to do since childhood, and you are still thinking about it, there’s no reason not to try it now.”
• Keep moving: “Stay on top of it. Take care of yourself, listen to your body. Mental health is just as important as physical health.”
Diana Landau is the Content Wrangler for Pickleball Media. After 15 years in corporate marketing, in 2012 she pivoted to write and wrangle content for Niche Media's weekly blog. She now manages the “I Used to Be Somebody” weekly blog.