See SuChin Pak From MTV News Now at 45
She also hosted TRL through most of the '00s.
In 2001, SuChin Pak joined MTV News as a correspondent, making history as the network's first Asian American reporter at age 25. She quickly expanded her role at MTV, becoming the narrator of Cribs and hosting the popular countdown show, Total Request Live, from 2002 to 2007. Read on to find out where she's been in the years since, and how she recently returned home to one of her earliest roles.
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She's delved into the worlds of green living, pop culture, and polygamy.
In 2008, Pak left MTV News to co-host the eco-themed Planet Green TV show, The G Word. Since then, she has continued to stay busy as a television host, journalist, and series narrator.
In 2016, she joined co-host Jerry O'Connell on the primetime People Magazine/ABC News collaboration, People's List. Fans of the TLC show Sister Wives will recognize her as a host of the series about plural marriage, as well as its dating-themed spinoff, Seeking Sister Wife. Pak has also frequently returned to her MTV roots, hosting and producing the MTV documentary series My Life (Translated), narrating the documentary series True Life, and hosting Catfish: The After Show.
She's a mother of two.
In 2012, Pak married Mike Bender, who is the co-founder of the website and book series Awkward Family Photos, the screenwriter of Not Another Teen Movie, a children's book author, and a frequent writer for the MTV Movie Awards. The couple recently moved from Los Angeles to Santa Barbara with their son, Kai, and daughter, Soe.
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She's opened up about her experiences with sexism and racism.
Following a nationwide explosion in anti-Asian violence and the March 2021 shootings targeting Asian spa workers in Atlanta, Pak spoke out about her experiences with racism at MTV, including an incident in which a colleague described her using a degrading racial slur while she was on air.
She wrote in an Instagram post that she fought to have the person removed, only to be handed an apology letter along with a reminder from an executive that the aggressor's "livelihood was on the line." The journalist ultimately walked out rather than open the letter but said that it would be years before she connected such comments to more overt aggression towards Asians.
"I know now something that I didn't quite understand then," her Instagram post continues. "Asians have been the butt of jokes, but these jokes are not to be dealt with lightly. These jokes are just the timid veneer that hide violence, hate, misogyny, racism and white supremacy. Our grandparents, our elders, our brothers and sisters are being spit on, punched, shot, attacked and murdered while these 'jokes' are being spit in our faces."
Pak expands on her experience in My Life: Growing Up Asian in America. In her forward to the 2022 collection of personal essays, she discusses the micro-aggressions and pressure to appear more Western that she's endured during her career, and how she has come to redefine the shame she felt for not standing up against them.
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She has a podcast about online shopping.
Pak met comedian Kulap Vilaysack through the organization Time's Up in 2019, and, during the pandemic, the two collaborated to launch the podcast Add to Cart. Described as "a subversive take on consumerism," the Lemonada Media podcast focuses on the things we buy—and buy into—alongside offering product recommendations. The hosts have also provided product recommendations for New York Magazine's The Strategist under the column "Auntie Approved."
She returned to MTV as the voice of Cribs in 2021.
When MTV revived Cribs, its popular half-hour peek inside celebrity homes, in 2021, Pak was invited to return to her former role as its narrator. Despite her painful past with the network, she chose to again lend her voice to the show, which she described as "comfort media" for pandemic viewing. "I think that there's a nostalgic quality to looking into a famous rapper's fridge that brings a little solace to the heart," she told the podcast I'm Sorry.