accidental existence

Life, one sentence at a time

COLUMN: Getting to know your face and finding my place November 8, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — emletterman @ 5:29 pm

This is a blog post by definition, but it’s not a blog post.
Don’t get excited.
This is a reposting of my first column for the Springfield Business Journal.

Thanks to Barb for the reminder.

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Getting to know your face and finding my place

It’s where I live, it’s where I shop it’s where I play and now, it’s where I work. Hello Springfield business community, it’s nice to finally meet you.

Last week I began my tenure as features editor at the Springfield Business Journal in a whirlwind of new responsibilities, a new mission, new articles and a new schedule.

A reporter at the Christian County Headliner News in Ozark for the past five years, I knew the work it would take to transition into this new position, but I also knew the opportunity it would bring to expand on my favorite part of the job: Meeting new people.

A regular fixture at the Ozark Chamber of Commerce’s weekly ribbon cuttings, I could easily strike up a conversation with any business owner or dignitary in the room. Last week, however, I attended my first event in my new role and found myself at a loss for words—a feat for anyone who knows me. As I looked around the room, the faces were friendly, but unfamiliar.

I want to change that.

Business reporting hinges on hard facts and industry numbers, as it should. But as features editor, I want to know the people behind those numbers and put a face with that corporate logo.

SBJ has a long history of producing award-winning special sections which showcase just that—the people who make the Springfield business community a success. Working on my first special section—Choice Employers—I’ve already met some great people, but I know there are still more to come. The Dynamic Dozen, Men of the Year, Forty Under Forty, the Most Influential Women—the list goes on and I’m looking forward to meeting every nominee this year, either in person or in print.

Through your profiles and my articles I will get to know you and through my interviews and columns, I hope you get to know me. It’s harder for a writer to craft their own story, but through my columns at the Headliner News, people often approached me in the community to ask about my furbabies—my pug Danny, my beagle Annabelle and my cat Chuck; my shopping habit—I’m already counting down to Black Friday; or congratulate me on my nuptials—I’ve been married to my best friend a year and a half now. To me they were strangers on the street, but to them, I had become like a family member they welcomed into their homes each week through newsprint.

The power of print is an awesome thing to behold. It has the power to unite, the power to divide and the ability to revel a truth you didn’t even know you were looking for. A graduate of Missouri State University, I was hooked on journalism from the first class and I’ve never stopped learning.

From crime articles to school board meetings, county fairs, new legislation and house fires, I’ve written it all and everything in between.

In the book of life, it’s not the destination, but the path you take along the way. This position opens a new chapter in the Letterman story and I can’t wait to write it.