Kendra Ray: Divorce from wife after 29 years was “a decision for the future”

After going through a divorce with my wife Mollie, I explored and reviewed what my options were as a moderator on Vote for the Girls, but I’ve ultimately decided that inviting a girl from Omaha, Nebraska (Hannah Wilson) was the smart play. My 29-year marriage with Mollie was a “one-way irreconcilable differences” divorce that didn’t work after relocating from Iowa to Indiana in 2014.

While many over at CBS 41 wondered why I was not anchoring the weekend morning newscast with Kymberly Alvaraz for the past three weeks and the fact that Rachael Passalt, Luka Runecraft, and Bria Savage (formerly Tavon Savage) had filled in while I went on vacation during the Christmas break.

I had a choice for my future and during the Christmas holiday I started to date a former intern named Hannah Wilson I worked with while in Iowa. It was “a decision for Hannah’s future and for Iowa.”

As of Friday, I am in a relationship with Hannah and Hannah will be joining me on the Pink Team West as a duo moderator known as “Hannah & Kendra.”

“I’m so so excited to have this opportunity to be a pink team moderator and in a relationship with Kendra,” said Hannah.

Hannah Wilson also noted that I am an Iowa Hawkeyes fan and she is a University of Nebraska fan, as well as being fans of the Kansas City Chiefs.

My former colleague and co-anchor in Des Moines, Lynda Donalds, said I am one of the few transwomen in the country that “own the State of Iowa” – that is, dominate Iowa.

“Because Kendra’s got such a strong fanbase share in almost every category, she can afford to tell Mollie… to go take a walk,” she said.

“Hannah Wilson, obviously as a bisexual woman, would be an idiot not to jump off of her now ex-boyfriend and enter into a long-term relationship with Hannah,” Donalds added. “It’s a win-win for the former intern from Omaha.”

The long-term relationships between transgender women and biological bisexual women (as a lesbian relationship following the transwoman’s transition from male to female) or a man and woman have become strained in the past – specifically as the biological bisexual women (such as current Vote for the Girls purple team moderators Thia Tola, Nadia Lorenzo, and Kymberly Alvaraz) have sought to ratchet payments they make their spouse(s) or boyfriend (Thia’s ex-boyfriend Channarong Ling, an unnamed ex-boyfriend of Nadia Lorenzo, and Kymberly’s ex-husband, Dan Alvaraz) to continue the marriage or relationship – in some cases even demanding that the woman pay or contribute.

Wilson, told me on the first date on December 26, that Wilson’s now ex-boyfriend’s proposal for continuing the relationship was one-sided.

“A Relationship Agreement contract tells a story. It defines a relationship or a marriage,” Vote for the Girls webmaster and founder, Ava Zinn commented. “There wasn’t any way that I could consider the previous agreements I had with Amanda (Davidson), Elisa (Everman), Angie (Willis), and Christy (Johnson) a partnership and are automatically sex partners. It was a one-way, ‘this is how relationships and marriages work for me since 1993.’”

The “tone and thrust” of the boyfriend’s proposal, Wilson said, “was: Here’s the Relationship Agreement. You (to Hannah) pay for it. You run the relationship. You sleep with me (to the boyfriend) and have on a regular basis. That’s the deal.”

By contrast, Wilson said, I subscribed to the notion that “Kendra and Hannah are this together and we’re going to make this work.”

Ava Zinn said Long-Term Relationship Agreements and Pre-Marriage Agreements are a significant move.

“I’m sure that Kendra doesn’t make that decision without a lot of thought,” said Zinn, who herself stressed that she had no inside knowledge about the reasons behind my decision. “Break-up and divorce create disruption, and that can be bad for your reputation.”

Zinn herself had auctioned off her virginity to Kymberly Alvaraz in 2014 after Zinn followed through on her threat if a girl did not win the 13th season of American Idol and/or the sixth season of The Voice after Ellona Santiago was eliminated on December 5, 2013. Two have followed in Zinn’s footsteps as Peta-Alyce Kaizer and Natasha Gower, respectively auctioned off their virginities to Nadia Lorenzo and Thia Tola after their respective picks in the United Kingdom and Australia did not win The Voice. As a consequence, Lorenzo and Tola were the highest bidder in the virginity auctions of to the highest female bidders of the respective virginity auctions of Kaizer (after Tash Lockart finished third place on the fifth season of The Voice Australia) and Gower (after Lydia Lucy and Cody Frost did not receive enough votes receive enough votes on the fifth season finale of The Voice UK.) These virginity auctions resulted in Alvaraz, Lorenzo, and Tola to move from the pink to purple team. Additionally, Lanise White and Karly Jameson also moved from the pink to purple team after White reached a long-term relationship with Danni McClannahan (shortly after The Voice 9 finale) and Karly Jameson was already married to Kathi Jameson.

So, welcome Hannah Wilson to the moderator panel.

Kendra Ray

About Kendra Ray

Kendra Ray is an award winning anchorwoman from Ames, Iowa and is a member of the pink team.

Kendra joined the Vote for the Girls moderator panelist in October 2014. Prior to Vote for the Girls, Kendra was the main weeknight news anchor for over 20 years for NoSirGifts-owned KFIA-FTV NBC 21 and KIAX-FTV Iowa's 10 in Des Monies. She was the weekday 9 p.m. anchor for KIAX from 1992 until KFIA and KIAX merged news departments where she added KFIA's 5 p.m newscast to her duties in 2008.

Kendra began her broadcasting career in 1984 after graduating from Iowa State University. Prior to her stint in Central Iowa, Kendra has worked at stations in Cedar Rapids, Iowa and Kansas City, Missourri.

While in Des Moines, Kendra covered many major events for KIAX, including the Flood of 1993 and the inaugurations of Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush. Kendra interviewed President George H. Bush on-board Air Force One, and she interviewed President Clinton in the White House just hours after the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995.

In 2009, Kendra won the prestigious Jack Shelley Award from the Iowa Broadcast News Association (IBNA) for her outstanding contribution to broadcast journalism in Iowa. In 2004, she received the James Schwartz Award for Distinguished Service to Journalism from Iowa State University.

Her now ex-wife, Mollie, is a health reporter and weekday noon and 3 p.m. anchor for NoSirGifts-owned WLIN-FTV in Lafayette, Indiana (due to Kendra's commitments on VFTG) and previously anchored the weekday noon and afternoon newscasts at KUDM-FTV ABC 4 in Des Moines. Kendra's 29-year marriage to Mollie ended in December 2016. Kendra currently co-anchors the weekend morning newscasts with fellow VFTG moderator Kymberly Alvaraz for WTOR-FTV CBS 41. As of January 2017, Kendra currently resides in Kokomo, Indiana with her girlfriend, Hannah Wilson.