After more than three years at the helm of The Herald-Whig and Courier-Post newsrooms, I’m writing today to let you, our readers, know that I have stepped down as executive editor.

This was not an easy decision for me, but it’s one that my health demands, after a year that started with a surprise triple cardiac bypass surgery.

Still, though, saying goodbye is difficult. I’ve been reading The Herald-Whig since I was a child, and I have made countless friends and professional relationships since I began here as a copy editor in 2013. My grandparents have subscribed to and read the paper for decades.

In Hannibal at the Courier-Post, my mom is a regular subscriber and reader.

Many other friends and family members, close and distant, depend on both papers to supply them with local news. It has been an enormous source of personal and professional pride knowing that I helped give them that news every day.

Over the years, it’s been satisfying knowing that I have played some small part in the long and storied tradition of both newspapers, informing the public, shining light on injustice, sharing the stories of friends and neighbors and even collecting more than a few awards along the way.

But, as the saying goes, all good things must come to an end. Being a newspaper editor has never been an easy job. Until recently, though, I have never shied away from tackling long hours and a heap of stress head on.

In saying goodbye, I would be remiss if I didn’t extend my thanks to some colleagues who are far more responsible for any successes I had than I am. First to Publisher Ron Wallace, who always showed a tremendous amount of faith in me. And to former Executive Editor Don Crim and former Copy Desk Chief Gerri Berendzen, who hired me way back in 2013 when I was looking to transition from my career in St. Louis to one back in this area. To former Sports Editor Matt Schuckman, who spent countless long hours working right beside me. To Doug Wilson and Debbie Husar, who have been professional role models of mine since I first met them while I worked for the Pike Press in the late 1990s. To Danny Henley and Trevor McDonald, who have shown more devotion to a publication than should ever be expected of any reporter.

And especially to News Editor Matt Hopf, who has done a remarkable job managing the staff while I took some extended health leave earlier this year while the newspaper was in transition to new ownership. I know that in his capable hands, the newspapers have an incredible future.

In a time when all sorts of people want to pontificate about what the role of journalism is, I am here to tell you journalists have one job: to tell the truth. I’ve always tried my best to do just that, and I hope The Herald-Whig, the Courier-Post and the communities they serve are a little bit better off because of that effort.

My departure from these historic publications does not mean I am leaving the local journalism scene, however. Starting next week, I will be beginning work as the digital content editor at WGEM. This marks a fresh start for me in a sector of the industry I’ve never worked in before. It’s an exciting new frontier that I look forward to exploring.

I pray you continue to show The Herald-Whig and Courier-Post your support moving forward. I know the hard-working, dedicated staff members of both publications give their all every day to serve you. Please reward that service with your continued readership and subscriptions.

In the meantime, I wish you all the best, and I look forward to continuing to serve in my new role at WGEM.

Thank you.

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