There are certain places that embed themselves in your mind and memories, even when it’s been years since you’ve visited.
For me, Cody is one of those places. Prior to joining the Cody Enterprise as its newest news editor on Sept. 12, I had only visited Cody a handful of times as a kid.
My family stopped at all the touristy sights. We visited the Buffalo Bill Center of the West shortly after the opening of the Draper Natural History Museum and came back years later following the opening of the Heart Mountain Interpretive Center – and probably only spent a day or two in Cody, but the city still left an impression thanks to its natural beauty, cool sights to see and the genuine kindness of everybody in the community.
My memories of Cody stayed with me, and when I had a chance to apply for reporting positions at the Enterprise in 2020 and again earlier this year, I was eager to send in my resume.
Neither of those opportunities worked out, but third time is the charm, as the saying goes.
I’ve been in town for just two weeks at this point, but I’ve already found my rosy memories of Cody weren’t mistaken. I’ve really been pleasantly surprised by how friendly everyone here has been, and what great conversations I’ve had with people in passing at the grocery store, the bank and the businesses on Sheridan Avenue.
Through six years in Wyoming journalism, I’ve discovered that, at its worst, Wyoming can have something of a “not in my backyard” attitude – a fear and distrust of people with different perspectives and different backgrounds and a desire to protect the state by keeping it the same way it’s always been. For someone who’s new to the community, this can often be lonely and isolating.
I can’t say for certain this attitude doesn’t exist in Park County, but I definitely haven’t encountered it yet. So many people have extended a friendly hand to me and welcomed me to the community, going out of their way to be kind to me.
While I’m new to Park County, I’ve been in and around northern Wyoming journalism for over six years now, starting with a four-and-a-half year stint at the Buffalo Bulletin and followed most recently by a nearly two-year stint at the Sheridan Press.
My areas of expertise and interest are generally city, county and state governments, although I have written about much more than that and will continue to do so for the Enterprise.
I still haven’t quite figured out the whole work-life balance thing, but when I have free time, I enjoy watching and writing about movies, taking hikes and bike rides, and haunting thrift stores and garage sales in search of a good deal. I also enjoy visiting my parents and sister, who all live in Billings, and spending time with friends.
More than anything, I’m passionate about the power that a story – whether it’s a news article, a book or a movie – has to transform people and the way they see the world.
Clearly, Park County is a special place, and I look forward to helping the amazing Enterprise team tell the community’s stories. If you have a news tip, or simply want to introduce yourself or share your thoughts on what we do well and what we can do better, I welcome that.
You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 587-2231. And, please, if you see me out and about in the community, I’d love for you to introduce yourself so we can get to know each other.