During my 13 years at the Lawrence Journal-World, I’ve worn a number of hats. I started by working the nightshift as a copy editor and progressed to society editor and then assistant assignment director.
During the past few years, I returned to reporting, and it has proved rewarding.
I have met many fascinating people including:
• Susan Mozykowski, who opened her home and heart to me while battling brain cancer.
• Lawrence resident Heidi Karn Barker, who had a life-saving organ transplant and allowed me to capture her journey.
• Michael Douglas, who has a rare lung disease, but you wouldn’t know it by his upbeat attitude and gratitude for life.
Today, I am a health reporter. Now, I wouldn’t call myself a health nut, but I watch what I eat and enjoy exercising. I also support the movement to buy locally-produced foods.
That’s because I grew up on a small cattle-and-wheat farm near Abilene and was actively involved in 4-H. I still enjoy gardening and baking — two projects I took in 4-H. One of my favorite jobs was working at Rock Springs 4-H Center as an archery instructor for two summers.
I graduated from Chapman High School, and then earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism at K-State, where my husband and I met. We still bleed purple despite living in a sea of crimson-and-blue Jayhawk fans.
We both love animals and have two cats named Allie and Sam. Allie was adopted from a shelter and Sam was adopted from my parent’s farm.
My first journalism job was at The Daily Union in Junction City, where I worked for nearly three years and that included during the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing. I was the wire editor at the time and fielded questions from national media about that horrific day because of Timothy McVeigh’s connections to the town and Fort Riley.
I always tell people that being a journalist is never boring.
For example, I received Botox for a story about anti-aging procedures. A few months later, I designed the front page of the newspaper on the night when KU's basketball team won the national championship. I had a blast handing out papers in downtown Lawrence.
I have evolved into a multi-media reporter — something I never expected. I report for 6News in Lawrence and KTKA in Topeka.
You can follow me on Twitter, where I provide instant updates on health news and what’s going on in Lawrence.
I am a blogger for a new health Web site. My goal is to spark a community conversation about how we can live healthier, happier lives and then report on our progress.
If you have a story idea or suggestion for the health Web site, please contact me by e-mailing email@example.com or calling (785) 832-7190.
About 450 women got the unique opportunity Thursday evening to mingle with KU basketball players and staff while enjoying wine and hors d’oeuvres. They learned some basketball moves, asked personal questions and got lots and lots of pictures and autographs. It was all part of the second annual "Ladies Night Out with Bill Self."
Angel Morris, mother of former Kansas University basketball stars Marcus and Markieff Morris, will receive Headquarter Counseling Center’s first “Life Saver” award. She is being honored for her sacrifice and selfless actions to help others, including KU basketball player Thomas Robinson and his younger sister after the death of their mother, Lisa Robinson, last January.
Former Kansas University basketball guard Mario Chalmers already is a hero in Lawrence. He made that miracle three-point shot that led to KU’s 2008 national title. But he’s also a hero off the court.
Former Kansas University basketball star Mario Chalmers will be in Lawrence next week to celebrate the opening of Mario’s Closet at Lawrence Memorial Hospital.
Former NBA and Jayhawk basketball star Scot Pollard has landed on the cover of newspapers and magazines, but never a calendar — until now. He’s pictured trying on a pair of red stilettos at Garry Gribble’s Running Sports store in downtown Lawrence.
Mike Anderson. Matt Brown. Frank Martin. Bill Self. On the basketball court, these area college coaches are fierce competitors — always trying to defeat the other. But, Tuesday, Oct. 12, will be an exception. They will compete together from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at Kansas City’s College Basketball Experience. Their opponent: cancer.
KU coaches Bill Self and Bonnie Henrickson are encouraging fans to join their team in the fight against cancer. How? By pledging money for each 3-point basket their teams make during the upcoming season. The money goes to the American Cancer Society’s Coaches vs. Cancer program.
Former Kansas University basketball star Mario Chalmers brought smiles and tears of joy this afternoon to cancer patients, doctors and nurses in Lawrence Memorial Hospital’s Oncology Department.
Ken Wertzberger, a Lawrence orthopedic surgeon, recently was honored for 27 years of service to Kansas University athletes. He volunteered at the university from 1979 to 2006, and during that time operated on more than 400 athletes.
While it’s illegal (wink, wink) to bet on the Jayhawks to win the national title in an office pool, it’s not illegal to put your money behind the team for a great cause.