Here’s hoping that Thomas Wolfe had it wrong.
The American novelist penned the book You Can’t Go Home Again, a metaphoric title about the often deceiving power of nostalgia.
“Home” (this word is going to come up so much you could turn it into a drinking game), for me, has always been community journalism and telling stories.
For as long as I can remember, I wanted to work at a newspaper; at first it didn’t even matter what role. I just wanted to be there!
My dad taught me to read on 1960s comic books where news organizations like the Daily Bugle and the Daily Planet were basically characters unto themselves and everyone who worked there was super cool.
That emotional connection always stuck with me. Journalism became an interest, then a college major and, ultimately, a career. (Sadly, it didn’t make me any cooler!)
I worked as a reporter, editor, publisher, head janitor; pretty much whatever was needed.
Along the way, I fell in love with storytelling and the idea that every person has one to tell. I was blessed to help share thousands of stories and meet amazing people who do spectacular things in several awesome communities.
But, after nearly two decades, I decided it was time for a change.
I gave my notice about a week before the pandemic (clearly my timing stinks and I picked the worst time in the history of the world to change careers.)
I wrote in my farewell column that there’s something to be said about knowing when to say goodbye to something you love before it becomes something you don’t. Fast-forward two and a half years.
After a short pitstop at the University of Kentucky, I’ve found my new professional home with Shriners Children’s in Lexington and Dayton. It’s an amazing organization with a mission that connected with my soul: to provide world-class healthcare regardless of a family’s ability to pay.
I love going to work every day!
In my role as regional director of marketing and communications I get to help tell the stories of our amazing patients and the impact our medical centers make on their lives.
But I am still drawn “home.”
That is where WinCity News and Views comes in. I’ve long admired what Pete, Chuck, and the rest of the team have been able to accomplish. Hands-down they were among the best community columnists I ever had the pleasure of working with. So for it to come full circle and me to be on the other side of the table as a contributing writer is an honor and truly humbling.
The opportunity to tell stories from the community I call home is exciting but it is also encouraging to be a part of something greater than myself. The core values of WinCity and its mission to celebrate creativity, foster informed conversation, and build community connections resonate with me in so many ways.
What can you expect from me? Frequent contributions built on concepts of honesty, truth, transparency, and the desire to celebrate Winchester and Clark County.
(Deadlines ruled my life with an iron fist for a long time so the best frequency commitment I can offer is “as often as possible.”)
Some articles may be commentary and other submissions will be human interest stories. I love going beyond the surface and finding those unsung heroes who are the fabric of our community. If that sounds like someone you know, don’t hesitate to shoot me an email to offer a suggestion.
I hope by returning to my proverbial home I can help celebrate our literal one.
There’s that word again. Raise your glass to Mr. Wolfe.