-- Elisabeth "Eli" Leamy is the Consumer Correspondent for ABC News' "Good Morning America" and also contributes consumer stories to World News and other ABC programs. Her specialties are stories on how to save money, keep your family safe, and avoid scams and rip-offs. Her most popular stories are on how to find unclaimed money that is out there waiting for you. She loves her beat because it's not theoretical; Her stories matter to people and their pocketbooks.
Since joining ABC in 2005, Elisabeth has reported and investigated a wide range of topics. In 2001 she started the "Show Me the Money" series on Good Morning America where she helps reunite people with their own unclaimed money. In February 2012, Elisabeth and her producer actually managed to return more than $1.1 million dollars to viewers –all in the course of one show! When the economy faltered, she looked for signs of how the downturn was impacting real people. One example: a hidden camera investigation into whether the numerous going out of business sales were actually bargains. (They weren't.) For another story, Elisabeth went shopping for a used car with a hidden camera –not to uncover wrongdoing but to show, step by step, how to save thousands by being a skillful haggler. She has also investigated whether gold buying services really give you a fair price for your gold.
Eli is known for finding visually arresting ways to impart important consumer information. To show which hand washing techniques work best, she put E Coli bacteria on her hands then washed with different products. To demonstrate the dangers of leaving children in cars in the summertime, she locked herself in a hot car and monitored her deteriorating vital signs. For a story on how flooding damages cars, Eli sank a car in the Baltimore harbor, then analyzed the corrosion.
Before joining "Good Morning America," Elisabeth was the senior investigative reporter for WTTG-TV Fox 5 in Washington, D.C., from 1997 to 2005. From 1994 to 1997, she worked as a consumer reporter at WFLA-TV in Tampa, Florida. Prior to that she was the weekend anchor at KERO in Bakersfield, CA. Many of Elisabeth's local news investigations resulted in new laws and congressional inquiries.
Elisabeth published her first book, "The Savvy Consumer: How to Avoid Scams and Rip-offs That Cost You Time and Money" in April 2004. Her second book, "SAVE BIG: Cut Your Top 5 Costs and Save Thousands" came out in January 2010. Instead of harping on small savings like giving up your daily latte, SAVE BIG shows readers how to save tens of thousands on houses, cars, credit, groceries and healthcare.
Elisabeth has been nominated three times for Business and Financial Reporting Emmys for stories on the internet underworld of identity theft and also the going out business and gold buying investigations mentioned above. Regionally, she has received 13 Emmy Awards and four Edward R. Murrow Awards.
Eli received her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California at Berkeley, and holds a Master's degree in journalism from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. Eli tries to practice what she preaches, doing the homework required to be a savvy consumer and looking for ways to save BIG. She grew up in the San Francisco area and now lives and works in Washington, D.C.