I started writing stories about ghosts, race cars and enchanted castles at the age of five (on single-sided sheets of massive multi-line paper, spelling words such as anyone,“ineyone”). I knew that while I might struggle to understand the meaning of Pi and the reason water is comprised of two oxygen molecules (it is, right?) and not three, I loved scribbling letters and words together to try and convey meaning. All the while Sports Center was my Sesame Street because I was fascinated by the spontaneous displays of raw emotion and talent by athletes of all levels of ability. I then started browsing through Sports Illustrated and The Sporting News at doctor’s offices, foregoing the normal young male obsession with Marvel heroes, decked out sports cars and pretty girls. I quickly learned the importance of an intriguing lead and telling stats to support an opinion and how the use of timely wit and humor was more effective than OD’ing on funny jargon.
A few years later I decided to enroll in this training program called college at Northern Michigan University. I started out as a spot writer for sports such as lacrosse and rugby and was at the sports editor post within a couple of years at the North Wind. I enjoyed the free food, locker room access and more than anything the rush of being relied on to gather, comprehend and report important information. My senior year I covered high school and junior sports for the Mining Journal, the Upper Peninsula’s largest daily paper.
Throughout college I was blessed to be under the tutelage of a former Denver Post columnist, who was twice nominated for the Pulitzer Prize in feature writing and actually won a Pulitzer as part of a group effort in covering the Columbine tragedy. I came to understand that while sports are fun to cover, there are so many other opportunities in journalism. Under her watch I went on to publish columns on violence against women and “saying sorry”, as well as enterprise pieces, trend stories and meeting recaps. While sports will forever be ingrained in my DNA I also have a passion for writing about religion, social phenomena, everyday people and under-appreciated nuances of society.
Now as a sports editor at the Hillsdale Daily News I am living my dream, covering high school and college sports and running my own section and putting ideas into action. Who I am I, in a single sentence? The only thing I believe in more than truth or people is Jesus Christ and his message.