Cinema and Photography, 2008
M.S., Professional Media
Business and Advertising
Director, Daily Egyptian
I don't really have a hometown as my parents worked for the Department of Defense and I went to seven different schools living in Germany, Illinois and Utah. I consider southern Illinois as my home as I have lived here for more than 21-years.
In 1995 I enrolled as a student in the Cinema and Photography program. I made several documentary films while also taking courses in photography, digital video production and cinema theory. In 1997 I was hired as a staff photojournalist at The Daily Egyptian. Deciding to work at the Daily Egyptian radically changed my life as I soon knew I wanted to become a journalist. After serving as a staff photographer I went on to be photo editor, web editor and managing editor during my three years at the paper. In 2000 I won the Illinois Press Photographer Association student photojournalist of the year, the first SIU student to do so.
The hands on experience of helping produce a daily newspaper prepared me extremely well before starting my own newspaper in 2002, The Carterville Courier. I went on to open two more weeklies in southern Illinois before selling my newspaper group in 2006. My newspapers won more than 70 journalism awards, including the The Verle V. Kramer Memorial Trophy for the best small weekly in the state two-years-in-a-row through the Illinois Press Association. Nearly all of my editorial staff were SIU alum or students.
In 2010 I received my M.S. in Professional Media and Media Management. My research focused on the transition of newspapers from a print first to digital first business model which is crucial to my current position as the Business and Advertising Director at The Daily Egyptian. I teach photography as term faculty at John A. Logan College and am the owner and creative director of HealthMed Media, a digital creative agency focusing on healthcare communications. My greatest joy in life are my six children and my wife, Sharrie. Sharrie is also a Daily Egyptian and School of Journalism alum (B.A., '99).