Friday, December 18, 2009

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A good friend - not just of mine, but of the entire community - is leaving the staff of the Reporter-Telegram at end-of-business today. And while one part of me is saddened by the move, thinking the paper will be lessened by his departure, an even larger part of me is happy and excited for him, and the new paths he'll be following.

Jimmy Patterson steps down today as the MRT's web editor, video contributor, blogger (and I-don't-know-what-else) to pursue a writing career. It's something he's wanted to do since he was a kid in freshman English ... and I can empathize with that, having a similar dream when I was pursuing my second major in English while in college.

I STRONGLY suspect Jimmy will realize his dream.

And don't read too much into my statement that "the paper will be lessened by his departure ..." It's something I feel whenever someone departs, whose byline I always look for, whose work I've come to respect and enjoy. There are still plenty of good people on staff at the MRT and ... but I will miss Jimmy nonetheless. I'm told John Boyd will assume online editor duties, and that he "is as capable as they come." It really can be a very exciting position, and it's one whose job description changes with the passage of time AND the development of technology. That's something I know, myself, from first-hand knowledge and experience, as a former editor of ... I wish John nothing but success.

And I also suggest he look to his predecessor, among others, for guidance. Jimmy took the newspaper's virtual property into new directions, and achieved new heights. He is one of a select group in Midland's virtual community who showed that the Internet can be a positive and productive force in the actual community. Jimmy's been there, done that ... and we're all the better for it.

Good luck in the future, my friend!

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