Tamara Vaifanua was born in southern California and raised in Taylorsville, Utah. She graduated from Southern Utah University in Communications and Political Science.Before joining Fox 13, Vaifanua worked at ABC Las Vegas affiliate KTNV as a reporter.

Before that, she launched the first news operation in St. George, Utah and served as anchor, reporter, producer and Managing Editor. She also served as the station’s political reporter. During her tenure, she covered the 2005 flooding of southern Utah, and the capture of polygamous sect leader Warren Jeffs. She also hosted and produced several documentaries, one featuring the homecoming of the 222nd Field Artillery Battallion from Afghanistan, another highlighting the humanitarian efforts of a local group who traveled to a Mexican orphanage.

Vaifanua began her career in broadcasting in Laughlin, Nevada as an anchor/reporter. She reported on the 2001 Laughlin River Run brawl that left numerous outlaw biker gang members dead. The Taylorsville native is excited to be back in her hometown near her family. She enjoys spending time with her family, and traveling to exotic places like her homeland of Samoa.

When she’s not chasing down news stories, you can find her logging miles for marathon #2. She ran her first marathon at the 2009 St. George Marathon. She and her husband have one daughter.

Recent Articles
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    Mother makes frantic 911 call after receiving text from daughter that burglars broke into home in Sandy

    SANDY, Utah -– Sandy police released the 911 call made by a frantic mother who got a text from her teenage daughter saying someone had broken into their home. The panicked mother raced to her ex-husband’s Sandy home Wednesday afternoon to rescue her 15-year-old daughter after the girl texted her mom saying she was afraid. Caller: “My daughter is home sick today, and she just sent me a bunch of texts saying: ‘Mom someone’s in the house. I can hear […]

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    Friends remember victims killed in flash flood at Zion National Park

    ZION NATIONAL PARK, Utah  – The search for seven hikers who got caught in flash floods at Zion National Park is over, as crews recovered the body of the last person Thursday morning, Linda Arthur of California. Linda, her husband Steve, and five other hikers went canyoneering in Keyhole Canyon Monday when the rushing waters overtook them. Colleagues of Steve Arthur took the news hard. “It’s tragic, it’s tragic all around,” said Capt. John Reilly with the Ventura County Sheriff’s […]

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    ‘Flash Flood Chaser’ weighs in on southern Utah flash flood victims

    SALT LAKE CITY – When a flash flood hits, authorities tell us to get away as far as we can, but one man runs toward them. David Rankin’s fearless nature has resulted in some great video over the years, and he says there’s a science behind predicting when and where a flash flood will surface. As we saw this week in southern Utah, people don’t realize how powerful rushing waters are, and, in a moment’s notice, you can find yourself […]

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    Changes in federal financial aid process could benefit thousands of students

    OGDEN, Utah – Students who have applied for federal financial aid know it can be a long and daunting process. But the White House is rolling out some changes that could speed things up. When students apply for college, they look at affordability. Some students rely on financial aid to cover the costs, but they don’t always find out how much they qualify for. The Obama Administration is tweaking the federal financial aid program so that students can get a […]

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    3-ton ‘Marsh Monster’ helping reclaim Great Salt Lake shorelands from invasive species

    GREAT SALT LAKE, Utah — We all mow our grass and pull the weeds to keep our lawns healthy and beautiful, and The Great Salt Lake Shorelands Preserve fights the same battle—but the plants in their way are 10-foot tall invaders. Now the preserve has a new vehicle to fight the problem, and it’s called the Marsh Monster. The hybrid of a lawn mower and tank operates on land or water and weighs three tons. The enemy is called phragmites, […]

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    Police warn football fans to lock up valuables before heading into Rice-Eccles Stadium

    SALT LAKE CITY – If you’re heading to the Utah versus Utah State game Friday night at Rice Eccles Stadium, police have a warning for you: Lock up your valuables in your car. More than 45,000  fans filed into Rice-Eccles Stadium for Utah’s season opener last Thursday, leaving a window of opportunity for thieves. “There was an uptick in vehicle burglaries, car prowls if you will,” said Deputy Chief Fred Ross with the Salt Lake City Police Department. Salt Lake […]

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    Books published in Utah pulled from Minneapolis school shelves over ‘hurtful’ and ‘insulting’ stereotypes

    SALT LAKE CITY – A Utah company that creates reading curriculum is revamping a series of books after teachers complained about the material being racially and culturally insensitive. Reading Horizons is a North Salt Lake based company that produced 54 books for the Minneapolis Public School District geared toward students in Kindergarten through 2nd grade. But before kids could crack open the books, the district pulled them off the shelves. The Minneapolis School District is starting the school year without dozens […]

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    Study highlights what is and isn’t working within Salt Lake County criminal justice system

    SALT LAKE COUNTY, Utah – A new report is putting the Salt Lake County criminal justice system in the spotlight. The report provides leaders with a snapshot of what’s working and not working within their criminal justice system. Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams sifted through the report unveiled Wednesday by the non-profit group The Council of State Governments Justice Center. The study looked at nearly 2.5 million records provided by the county’s jail, courts and legal system. People released […]

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    Event organizers invite Utahns to ‘Drink beer; save land’

    PARK CITY, Utah — Park City is a world class resort town, but for its first century it was a mining town, and, now, something the original miners brought with them is helping save open space in Park City and Summit County. Park City has been attracting beer drinkers since the mining boom in the 1860s. In fact, wild hops grow all around the town. “So they’re not native to Utah, we think they were brought over from Europe by […]

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    BYU student health plan no longer compliant with Affordable Care Act

    PROVO, Utah – Some Brigham Young University students are shopping for a new health insurance plan because the school’s health care plan in no longer compliant with the Affordable Care Act. Student health insurance plans across the country were given an extension for the past couple of years to meet all the requirements under the Affordable Care Act, but that extension expired August 31. Now, schools like Brigham Young University are choosing to remain non-compliant. BYU Spokesman Todd Hollingshead addressed […]

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    Hillside fire in Cottonwood Heights comes dangerously close to homes

    COTTONWOOD HEIGHTS, Utah – Cell phone video captured flames that broke out on a hillside in Cottonwood Heights Thursday morning just after 3 a.m. The flames inched dangerously close to homes above and below the hill near 2498 East 7830 South. Renee King lives in the Cottonwood Heights neighborhood. She left her window open overnight, and just before 3 a.m. she smelled smoke. “I called 911 then woke up my neighbors to get some support and to make sure they got their […]

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    Returning LDS missionaries boosting enrollment at UVU, other Utah schools

    OREM, Utah – Utah Valley University started its fall semester more than a week ago, and they’re already seeing more students than last year. That’s a promising start after hundreds of students left to serve missions for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints three years ago. Jake Jensen served for two years as a missionary for the LDS Church in the Hawaii, Honolulu mission. Now, the 21-year-old is attending Utah Valley University, and he’s not alone. “This is […]


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