Opportunities are a blessing

I am astounded by the opportunities that have been afforded to me, especially recently. You would be hard pressed to find a person more thankful than this guy.

This year, I?ve had the chance to write about a lot of neat things, our media company has expanded, and I?ve had a chance to forge relationships because of this media group. Plus, last month I got the privilege to travel to Colombia, Mo., for the Annual Walter B. Potter Sr. Conference: Innovation and Transfor?mation in Com?munity Newspapers.

Before I get the eye rolls about being behind enemy lines, sports aside, the University of Missouri has the finest journalism school in the world, and most would say it?s not that close.

An opportunity to present to my peers on some of the neat stuff we are doing is always fun, but to do it in the school that has produced some of the world?s finest journalists was humbling.

I didn?t get the traditional education many folks in my position pursued. I went to the journalism school of ?Learn on the Job? at the ?University of the Harvey County Independent and Clarion Newspapers.?

The only traditional education I got in journalism came from Mr. Mont?gomery at Hutchinson Community College, and while some look down on that, I found it to be my right path.

The journalism school in Columbus was impressive to say the least. They do some really innovative things, and I picked up on a few we might be able to start doing here at the paper, too.

I heard presentations from groups as far away as New England and have six pages of notes to go with the materials they gave us to take home.

The point of my column isn?t to bore you with journalism conference minutia, but rather to encourage everyone to seek continuing education and innovative things when you can. I also just wanted to tell everyone how thankful I am for the opportunity to own and publish your community newspaper.

This paper has afforded me some cool experiences, and without you readers supporting us, I go back to the design desk at a daily newspaper somewhere, never to see the light of day ever again.

Thank-you for your support; thank-you for dealing with me being gone occasionally for a conference; and thank-you for your constant kind words.

I feel very blessed to be in Marion County and to have the opportunity to engage in these communities every week.