Well, crew, we made it through the primary elections and all came out seemingly no worse for wear.
Congratulations to all the candidates who made it through the first (and for some, the most important) test of the election season. It takes courage to run for public office and I applaud you all.
The elections, while signaling new beginnings in many instances, also signified departures. Several longtime public servants opted to hang up their hats. They pass the torch to new leaders tasked with representing the people of Wyoming and Sheridan County in particular. If you see any of those leaving office before January, when the transitions will occur, be sure to thank them. Whether you agreed with their politics or not, they stepped up when many others did not.
We have had and will have departures of our own here at The Sheridan Press.
Managing editor Mike Pruden will head east to work for Indiana University as the digital media content manager for the women’s basketball team. I’m so proud of him. Mike has grown immensely since he first started at The Press a few years ago. And that’s saying something, because he was already pretty good when he got here. He helped continue pushing The Press forward, offering more video and bettering our local sports coverage. Plus, you couldn’t help but chuckle with most of his weekly columns. He taught me a lot.
We’re used to turnover in the newsroom here at The Sheridan Press. Mike’s departure comes on the heels of our former photojournalist, Justin Sheely, leaving our team. He and his family will move to Billings, Montana, and Justin plans to return to school.
Many young reporters come here to gain experience and move on to bigger markets closer to home. We do our best to teach them, coach them and help them reach their goals. It’s tough, because we always get attached to those who come and go. But, we hope we’re helping form and encourage the next generation of community journalists. And, it seems, there are always young journalists willing to give Sheridan a shot.
In one of our other departments, marketing and circulation director Patrick Cossel has given his notice and will wrap up his time at The Press next week. Cossel has said over and over that he loves the direction The Press is heading; he’s been one of our best cheerleaders as we try new things and tackle new projects. We’ll miss Cossel, but we know he isn’t going far. We wish him all the best of luck as he starts new adventures.
So, it’s been a rough couple of weeks as we reflect on the turnover. But the team we have is strong. They work hard. They are eager, innovative and ready to continue working to make The Press the best community newspaper around. We’re aiming to increase community engagement and raise the level of public discourse. Everyone on our team believes in that mission. While we’ll miss our friends and colleagues who are moving forward to other professional and personal achievements, we are confident that the new names we bring on board will help us further our mission even more. Stay tuned; there are big things coming from The Sheridan Press.