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Taking the next step

As I stepped into the Pioneer Journal office after a lunch break on Wednesday, Jess, our receptionist, immediately pulled me aside. Sporting a look of bewilderment, she asked, “Why are people calling in asking if we’re closing?”

The question caught me off guard. Closing? “Heck,” I thought, “I’m the editor and this is news to me!”

Of course, that was not the case at all. It didn’t take long for me to realize that some wild and false rumors were spreading around our small town.

Let me just take a moment to clear everything up: we are still very dedicated to serving this community and providing quality news coverage.

I, however, would like to inform the community that, after much consideration, I have accepted another opportunity and will be moving on from Wadena.

It was announced to my staff last week that my last day in the office will be Wednesday. From there, I will move on to Bismarck, N.D., where I’ll work in the communications department of Basin Electric Power Cooperative.

I’m very much looking forward to this opportunity, as it will give me a chance to engage in more of what I set out to do when I chose this career: write.

In addition to helping publish Basin’s magazine, Basin Today, I will report on news surrounding the company’s regional power plants and project sites. I will also work in other areas of communication, such as video production and drafting speeches.

I am very excited about this new experience, but don’t think for a second that I’ll forget where I’ve been.

Serving as editor and general manager at the Pioneer Journal over the last year has been a growing experience for me and my staff. I am very appreciative to have been accepted into this community, and am very proud of the work that has been done at the newspaper.

Our newspaper has made great strides in meeting the state-of-the-art practices that are required by the news industry, and I am blessed to have been a part of the team effort that took place here.

When rumors were flying Wednesday that desks and boxes were being rushed out of our office, it reminded me of just how invested this town is in its news.

While some of the rumors that floated through the office made me chuckle, it’s good to see that the community deeply cares for this newspaper. Let me just say that the feeling is mutual. It’s our goal to serve this community.

Personally, the news we’ve covered throughout the past year has kept me on my toes. The new Wadena-Deer Creek Middle/High School opened, and I was introduced to Wadena’s vibrant culture and the many activities and events this community has to offer.

And what a blessing it was for our paper to receive a Minnesota Newspaper Association award for best special section in a weekly newspaper. It was certainly fun to produce the WDC Wolverine booklet in the fall.

I would like to thank everyone in this community for giving me the opportunity to be your editor. Like any job, this position certainly presented challenges that led to positive growth, but it also gave me the opportunity to get to know you, the readers.

As I leave Wadena, I look forward to seeing this community continue to grow in years to come.

God bless.