Who Is Ginger Zee, Val Chmerkovskiy’s Partner, Of ‘Dancing With The Stars’ Season 22?

Good Morning America weather anchor Ginger Zee is one of the new contestants for Season 22 of Dancing With the Stars this spring and her addition to the cast has DWTS buzzing. Ginger has a huge fan base from her work on GMA and ABC World News Tonight and many fans think her energy will be a great fit for the ABC dance show. What do folks need to know about Ginger as this new season hits?

As IMDb notes, Ginger grew up in Grand Rapids, Michigan, after being born in California. She was named Ginger after the Gilligan’s Island character. It turns out that her father, who immigrated from the Netherlands, chose the name as a tribute to the show that helped him learn English. This new Dancing With the Stars contestant was born with the name Ginger Renee Zuidegeest and she is now 35-years-old.

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ABC News details that Zee graduated from Valparaiso University with a bachelor of science degree in meteorology. After gigs in Michigan and Chicago, Illinois, Ginger joined ABC and she has become a huge fan-favorite personality on both ABC News and Good Morning America. Part of what viewers love about this new Dancing With the Stars contestant is her love for adventure. She has traveled the world not only reporting on the weather, but also while embracing opportunities to paraglide, dive, surf, race and even rappel.

Ginger Zee married NBC news correspondent Ben Aaron Colonomos in June 2014 and they welcomed baby Adrian Benjamin in December 2015. Ben and Ginger met at a charity event thanks to a mutual friend and dated for about two years before getting engaged. Zee said that she knew as soon as she met Ben that he was the guy she would spend the rest of her life, detailed People. Despite that, she admitted that he completely surprised her with his proposal that involved a container of Magnolia bakery banana pudding, a favorite treat of theirs that they had on their first date.

Ben and Ginger had a fairly small wedding, inviting 55 guests to watch them exchange vows in Petoskey, Michigan, outside along the lake where she spent summers as a child. Just about a year later, Zee shared the news of her pregnancy and fans eagerly followed every one of Ginger’s updates along the way. Just as Zee was heading back to Good Morning America after her maternity leave, she surprised fans by embracing the opportunity to do Dancing With the Stars this spring.

Zee will dance with pro Val Chmerkovskiy this spring, a pairing that has many Dancing With the Stars talking about the possibility of a big win in Season 22. As DWTS fans know, Chmerkovskiy has been with the show for quite a few seasons now and he recently won his first mirror-ball trophy with Rumer Willis in Season 20. He has also partnered with celebrities like Sherri Shepherd, Kelly Monaco, Zendaya and Tamar Braxton.

Do Ginger and Val have what it takes to bring home another win? There will be a lot of competition this spring, with fellow contestants like Jodie Sweetin, Antonio Brown and Doug Flutie. However, Dancing With the Stars fans are definitely ready to vote for Ginger Zee and Val Chmerkovskiy and cannot wait to see how things go for them on the dance floor. Season 22 of DWTS premieres on Monday, March 21 and this is shaping up to be a wild and entertaining season that viewers are seemingly quite anxious to embrace.

[Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images]