435 N. Michigan Avenue
TT 400
Chicago, IL
Becky Yerak
My Role

I'm the banking, private equity, and property and casualty insurance reporter for the Chicago Tribune. I also write about trends related to borrowing, earning and spending.
My Biography

I joined the Chicago Tribune in December 2003 as a retail reporter, and, in November 2005, was moved to the financial services beat.

I recently learned that I'm a Lisagor awards finalist for best technology reporting. The honor is given out by the Chicago Headline Club. http://www.headlineclub.org/component/content/article/400-congrats-to-our-lisagor-finalists.html

Before moving to Chicago -- which, by the way, is the best city I've ever lived in -- I worked for the Detroit News, the (Cleveland) Plain Dealer, the Palm Beach Post and Orlando Business Journal.

I'm from the Cleveland area and have a bachelor’s in journalism from Ohio State University.

In February 2012, I was part of a team that was honored by the Associated Press Sports Editors for one of the five best explanatory stories by large newspapers in 2011 for a piece about the final days of former Chicago Bears player Dave Duerson. She focused on his financial problems. http://tinyurl.com/a3bx528

In spring 2011, I was one of only two dozen journalists selected from about 600 applicants worldwide for the Kiplinger social media fellowship. http://tinyurl.com/bk4rxqf

During the financial crisis, I appeared two straight nights on nationally televised, primetime "On the Record" on Fox News with Greta Van Susteren to discuss a Northern Trust golf tournament. I also occasionally appear on other TV and radio shows. At the risk of jinxing myself, I haven't had an error in a story since 2008.

I can also be found on Google+ at www.gplus.to/beckyyerak and occasionally posts to http://chifinance.wordpress.com.

My cell phone number is 1-312-823-7514, and my home phone number is 1-312-337-0519.
My Interests

I'm a member of the Southport Cine-Club, a monthly film discussion group.

Since 2007, I've volunteered at Blind Services Association of Chicago, where I record books, read to the blind, and help vision-impaired individuals shop online and go through their mail.

Since December 2006, I've been a lector and acolyte at St. Peter’s in the Loop. That includes wearing a long white robe, helping to serve communion during Mass, and doing the two readings before the priest declares the gospel. I like getting pampered in the spa at Nordstrom, where I'm also on a first-name basis with many members of the sales force in the accessories department.

I also like to travel, explore Chicago and take Illinois road trips; eat premium ice cream and Italian food; and get eight hours of sleep a night.

I'm still fond of sending snail mail. My pleasure-reading choices are often dictated by what books and magazines are discarded in the laundry room of her building. I regularly take classes at Newberry Library.

I'm not above admitting that I like watching TV. My default stations are Cspan, AMC, Animal Planet, Discovery, History Channel and Fearnet. My favorite shows are the "Walking Dead" and "Dancing with the Stars."

With no parental help, I was the top M&Ms seller two consecutive years on high school student council. Alec Baldwin and Michelle Malkin have both retweeted me. I ran 1996 Columbus, Ohio, marathon in 3:40