If you happened to flip past TMZ sometime last fall, you probably noticed a familiar face was missing.

Nina Parker, who started off at the entertainment website as a runner in 2007 before she was promoted to producer, left last September for a position with The Insider as an on-air correspondent.

“Before I got there [TMZ], I had never worked that hard in my life,” Parker told Mediabistro. “I was literally at times sleeping in my car and then just going to work.”

For Parker, TMZ was the opportunity she needed to break into the business. After studying broadcast and electronic communication arts at San Francisco State University, the Sacramento native was working a regular 9-5 job back home.

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