Swala Nyeti had the special opportunity to interview Joan Kibare, a multi-talented audio and radio producer, voice over artist and recently joined the radio presenting world and taking over the airwaves as one of the fast-rising new talents who loves life.

Here is how the interview with Jojo Kibare, who presents the Trace City show, went:  

Who is Joan Kibare and what makes her tick?

She’s a creative, radio host and audio producer professionally. Apart from that, she’s a fun loving, vibe seeking, positive energy individual who spreads positivity and is into pop and Afro culture.

What kind of a childhood did you have and what did you want to become?

I had a pretty good childhood. Supportive parents who have and still support our dreams and goals. I was taught to not show fear and chase my dreams no matter how crazy they seemed.

Joan Kibare. PHOTO/TRACE

What is your education background and how did you get into the media industry?

I studied journalism at the East African School of Media Studies (EASMS) and the University of Nairobi. I got into the industry through radio production. I initially wanted to be a radio presenter from the start but life had to pass me through a different direction first. Which I’m entirely grateful for.

You are a woman of many talents. How do you balance them in the media sphere?

I’m lucky enough to be blessed with skills and talents that revolve around each other making it effortless to balance them all. And the passion just makes it seem like child’s play.

How did you choose the media from other professions?

I wanted to be a cosmetic surgeon and since that didn’t give, I looked for a career that wouldn’t be as complicated. Turns out that was the best decision I ever made.

How was your work like at RMS and how did it inform your career path?

That is a platform I will forever be grateful for. I joined Royal Media Services in February 2013 and gained most of my skills there and the diversity in the company opened my mind to a million possibilities in the industries not forgetting that’s where I discovered other talents I didn’t know I had. RMS is the foundation of what I do.

Joan Kibare. PHOTO/TRACE

You recently joined Trace Radio, what occasioned the move and how has the experience been like for you?

Trace knocked with an opportunity of a lifetime and I joined them in February 2022 after exiting RMS. One that is inevitably catapulting me to the growth I wouldn’t have experienced in my previous position. Trace has changed my career direction to something far beyond my hopes and the ability to freely create content in an international platform changes the gear in anything I’ve experienced and has opened doors for me to place myself in a position of change and still entertain.

Joan Kibare. 

What does your normal working day look like and what role has social media played in your career growth?

I report to work a couple of hours before the show (Trace City) and finalise my show prep. The show starts from 10am-1pm. After the show, I attend meetings, if any. Then head home to relax, probably read a book before catching up on the day’s events.

You are always in a happy mood, on air and off air, why?

Life is hard. And finding happiness is a good distraction from it. But when joy is a habit, love is a reflex and I think the universe rewards you with what you put out. So why not give what you want to receive.

Any challenges you have faced in your career? How have you overcome them?

The only challenge is lack of enough opportunities in the industry. The industry is extremely small and due to this, the few good opportunities are handed over to individuals mainly through connections. That’s why we have the same faces over and over again, everywhere yet the talent out here is outstanding.

Away from radio and media, what kind of a person is Joan Kibare?

If I’m not indoors, reading and relaxing or with my family. You’ll probably catch me outside with my small circle of friends catching vibes and making memories.

Who do you look up to in your line of work and in life in general?

In my line of work, it has to be Caroline Mutoko and in life, Zhou Qunfei. These are women who’ve accomplished so much having started from the bottom. And I aspire to inspire others as much as they have inspired me.

What lessons have you learnt about life and work?

Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work. If you can, have and use both. Success is inevitable only when you practice persistence and patience.

What advice would you give others who want to follow in your career footsteps?

Practice and be patient. Have a goal and work towards it. The rest will give in time.

What is your view on relationships and how do you balance it with your career?

There’s no blueprint for a perfect relationship but I believe communication is key to most misunderstandings and once you have a partner who communicates and understands your line of work then nothing is impossible when it comes to balancing the two.

What is that one food or activity that makes your day and life worthwhile?

I love good food but chocolates always seem to brighten my day. I’m a sucker for chocolates. But what makes my day is being on air and engaging with listeners. That’s always the best part of my day with or without chocolates. Lol!

Joan Kibare. PHOTO/TRACE

When all is said and done, what do you want to be remembered for?

The person who always put a smile on your face through the airwaves or in person.