2007 Association of Alternative Newsweeklies

These posts were published by the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies, a nonprofit association of 125 alternative papers in the United States and Canada. was designed to give members the tools to create better websites – highlighting best practices, improvement opportunities, and innovations online. I worked for AAN for six months as Web Director/Editor before I reluctantly accepted a severance package. During that timeframe, I project managed several website redesigns, launched a community conversation portal for our annual convention, and wrote this web publishing best practices blog.

Links open at

Should Your Redesign Include a Social Network? | July 2007
Why Newspapers Added Blogs | July 2007
Police Brawl in DC: A Case for Citizen Journalism | June 2007
Creating a Space for Community Conversation | May 2007
Managing Your Digital Professional Identity | June 2007
5 Quick Tips for Making Online Innovation Happen | April 2007

2006 Creative Loafing

After my fellowship at Poynter, I accepted a position as Food Editor at the Tampa Creative Loafing – then called The Weekly Planet. Within six months of pestering the COO to make various fixes to the chain’s web publishing processes, I was given the job of doing it myself as Web Editor for the chain’s (then) four papers. Below are some of the articles I wrote while still in Tampa.

Originally published at
The Impersonal Touch | April 2005
Fear Factors | December 2004
Oh Lonely Night | December 2004
Feliz Ano Novo | January 2005
Fat Kevin and the Hot Dog Sisters | December 2004

2004 Poynter College Fellowship

I was honored to be a recipient of the Poynter Fellowship for College Journalists in 2004. 16 writers, 8 photographers, and 8 designers were chosen from a national applicant pool, and divided into geographical beats. (This dates me; in later years the program moved into multimedia reporting :)

Each team worked together to find stories in a place we’d never been before: St. Petersburg, FL. Our team was lucky enough to cover Gulfport, FL.

Originally published at
Invisible Man: Death and Questions in Gulfport, FL | June 2004

2003 San Antonio Current

I started interning at the San Antonio Current in 2003 while I was a senior at Trinity University. Within a month, I was named “Star of the Month” – silly, I know, but I was the first intern to get that award and it was really exciting. I published my first cover story within a few months on a subject that is still dear to my heart – school lunches. I was hired first as a Calendar Editor, where I spent the majority of my time wrestling with databases and software – laying the foundation for an eventual move to digital media.

As Staff Writer and Food Editor, I had the chance to manage a section, implementing new features while still covering all kinds of news stories. Sometimes your first little paper turns out to be the best experience in hindsight.

Originally published at
Parsley, Salt, Red Pepper and Time | May 2004
The Unbearable Lightness of Being an American Idol | May 2003