By Pamela Brownstein
Holly Bounds Jackson has been reporting the news and bringing Lowcountry residents memorable stories about interesting people and places for nearly 10 years.
After two years away, this hard-working broadcast journalist, wife and mother of two young girls recently returned to Beaufort County and is currently the weekend morning anchor at WSAV-TV.
Born and raised in the small town of Bishopville, Bounds Jackson, 32, developed a passion for journalism at a young age. In seventh grade, she had a high school journalism teacher who doubled as the local newspaper’s editor.
“She really encouraged me with my writing and gave me opportunities to work for the paper early on,” she said. “Writing is therapeutic to me, and I love the thrill of working breaking news and telling people what’s happening.”
Bishopville is also the hometown of her husband, Brian Jackson, 35.
“We grew up together and went on our first date when I was just 14,” Bounds Jackson said.
The two have been married for nine years, and before having kids they could be spotted at Harold’s Country Club in Yemassee or wearing clever costumes at their friends’ annual Halloween party.
Bounds Jackson’s first job out of college was at WJWJ-TV in Beaufort, which was a regional station of SCETV. She worked there for a year and then became the Lowcountry reporter for WSAV-TV in Savannah, and then the anchor for the 5 p.m. news; she was at WSAV for more than seven years.
After the birth of their first child, Sofie Beth, “I thought I needed a schedule change so I spent a brief time in public relations, but I found myself still itching to cover news whenever it broke,” she said.
So she jumped on the opportunity to report for WFLA-TV in Tampa. For two years, she worked as the Polk County reporter and the family lived in Lakeland, Fla., which they enjoyed because it was very family-oriented and a short drive from Disney World.
But during their second summer in Florida, they vacationed on Fripp Island for a week during the Beaufort Water Festival.
“Brian and I were sitting on the deck of Saltus, watching Deas Guyz perform from a distance,” Bounds Jackson recalled. “He looked at me and said, ‘We’ve gotta get back here.’ Three weeks later he was interviewing for the business banker role with Bank of America on Hilton Head.”
Once Brian was locking in his job, Bounds Jackson called her former news director at WSAV to see if there was a chance at coming back.
“I’ll never forget the warmth I felt when he said, ‘You can start tomorrow.’ People ask if it felt like I never left and that’s certainly the case. My mailbox was still in the newsroom and my curling iron was still in the makeup room. I guess they knew I’d be back.”
The family moved to Moss Creek in December 2015, and recently celebrated the birth of a new baby girl, Glory, who is 2 months old.
Juggling schedules as a working mom with two young children is extremely hard, Bounds Jackson admitted, and she is thankful that Brian is a great dad.
When Sofie Beth, 3, started at Cross Schools in Bluffton, Brian accidentally became a lunchbox sandwich artist and his creations have been a hit with not only her but her teachers and all of Bounds Jackson’s friends on social media. She said she made a New Year’s resolution to pack an awesome lunch once a week. She did OK for about three weeks, but one night she was too tired so Brian said he’d pack Sofie Beth’s lunch.
“I woke up the next morning and discovered a masterpiece of a sandwich! I couldn’t believe it,” said Bounds Jackson with a smile. “It’s really pretty hilarious and he’d be embarrassed if I told how much time he’s spent on a PB&J before.”
Bounds Jackson said she feels fortunate to be back in Beaufort County and working at a job she enjoys and raising her family in such a special place.
“There’s something about the Lowcountry that I haven’t been able to find anywhere else,” she said. “The people are so thoughtful and down-to-earth. They genuinely care about those around them and I want to always surround myself with those kind of folks, if I can.”
Top photo: Holly Bounds Jackson and her husband, Brian, take a family photo with their daughters Sofie Beth, 3, and Glory, 2 months.