Boston traffic reporter Scott Eck made a gender change announcement on Wednesday.
“My new name is Kristen Eck and my new identity is female,” she said, according to the station where she works, WBZ NewsRadio 1030.
Undergoing her transition with the aide of counseling services and hormone therapy, Eck reportedly decided to take the leap nearly a year ago, but said she’s been something she was aware of since she was young.
“This has been a journey of sorts that I’ve been on for the last 40 years of my life. It was when I was about 5 years old that something clicked in my head and I realized that I was different from most of the kids around me,” she continued. “There was something from deep within me that said, ‘This isn’t my body,’ or this isn’t the body that I’m supposed to have. I felt very genuinely and very deeply that I was supposed to be a girl.”
Initially coming out in 1995, Eck revealed to his live-in girlfriend that he was “a female who’s been trapped inside of this body all this time,” the radio station reports. However, with transgender awareness far from where they are today, Eck struggled with finding information and found it “really hard to find someone to talk to professionally about it.”
According to WBZ, Eck found the courage to push forward after watching Caitlyn Jenner make her own public announcement in July of 2015. Finally deciding to start her own process of transitioning, Eck reportedly hopes to have gender reassignment surgery within a year. However, Eck told WBZ that her change will not affect her reporting.
“A lot of people were wondering about that, saying if you’re making this transition, if you’re becoming Kristen, does your voice go away?” Eck said. “And it doesn’t. It’ll be the same voice that you hear every day in the helicopter; that you’ve been hearing every day in the helicopter.
“That stays the same. The sense of humor stays the same – for better or worse. My love of doing this [radio] stays the same. So there are a lot of things that won’t change at all.”
RELATED VIDEO: VIDEO: Watch Caitlyn Jenner Crack Jokes at ‘Glamour’ Women of the Year Awards
With Jenner and other stars like Laverne Cox championing the crusade for equal rights for the transgender community, the conversation surrounding the LGBTQ community has been one of the issues at the forefront of conversations about social justice in America.
“There’s not just one trans story. There’s not just one trans experience. And I think what [Americans] need to understand is that not everybody who is born feels that their gender identity is in alignment with what they’re assigned at birth, based on their genitalia,” Cox told Time about understanding the trans narrative in this country. “If someone needs to express their gender in a way that is different, that is okay. That’s what people need to understand, that I’s okay and that if you are uncomfortable with it, then you need to look at yourself.”