Opinion & Editorial

Fifty first names only: July

Noel Nash, publisher

My mother-in-law moved to the area almost one year ago, and we celebrated her 84th birthday this past weekend. I was able to spend time when many of her new friends, mostly residents of her apartment complex. Carol and Rob were nice enough to talk journalism with me and the importance of community newspapers. They are from Northern California, and have lived in Oregon for more than a decade now. Julie, Irene, and Jen all spent time talking about what they love about Oregon and how they’re enjoying retirement here. Alegria discussed her fascinating background in the arts in the wellness community. She presented Rose, the birthday celebrant, with a special instrument discovered years after it had once been lost. … Michelle and Mark took great care of me after a recent spate of health issues. I have nothing but good experiences at Kaiser Permanente at Chase Gardens. 

Erin Tierney-Heggenstaller, executive editor

Phew! Lots of new faces here at The Chronicle, thanks to a recent partnership between our business and the University of Oregon. We’ve received dozens of applications for internships for both editorial and sales and marketing, and I’ve got to say, we’ve got the cream of the crop. 

We said goodbye to reporting intern Sophia last week and welcomed new additions Lauren, Zoe, Paolo, and Bailey to the editorial side of operations. 

Just a week or two in, the editorial intern team has been helping staff with collecting calendar listings, formatting police logs, and even snagging a few bylines of their own. You’ll note Lauren’s first-ever Chronicle byline on the front of this week’s edition, and no doubt you’ll see bylines from all four in the upcoming weeks before they head back to class. 

Garrett, Julia, Spencer, and Nakul have been working with our sales director on all sorts of fun projects and sales initiatives. If you’ve been to Roast, Toast & Boast, The Chronicle’s monthly networking event at Pegasus Playhouse, you’ve probably seen Garrett hard at work behind the camera, or  Julia tabled up at one of the many events where we’ve been setting up this month. 

Speaking of RTB, if you haven’t been yet, consider this your personal invitation. The networking event focuses on nonprofits in our area in addition to local women in leadership. This month we enjoyed hearing from Celeste of Celeste Watch Co. (what an impressive woman – if we had the space, we’d write a book on her!) and Monica from the Springfield Lions Club. Both women are community-oriented do-gooders. They gave excellent, casual presentations at the event. The next one is set for 8:30 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 14, located at Pegasus Playhouse, 402 Main St. in Springfield. Eat some avocado toast, sip some coffee, and meet and mingle with area businesses leaders. I’m a repeat offender, and each month I especially love getting to know Todd with Cross Cultural Now and Lesa with Benefits by Artzberger.

It was great to see Vicki, Creswell subscriber, stop by the newsroom to renew her subscription. She offered kudos on our expanded coverage approach and loves to read about the other cities that we cover. She said it makes her feel like she knows what’s going on in the area, which is exactly what we like to hear. 

Amanda Lurey, reporter

When I started at The Chronicle just over a month ago, I was tasked with meeting influential people to introduce myself informally over coffee. Since then, I have met with 19 incredibly kind stakeholders, and I’m looking forward to continuing to meet passionate community members – so if you’re interested, email me!

My first meeting was with Joe at The Washburne Cafe, which quickly became a go-to meeting spot for Springfield contacts. I got to know him on just my third day on the job – and I can’t thank him enough for easing me into this process and being so helpful as a source later on as well.

I also met with Mike, Zak, Heather, Alex, Dana, another Mike, Brian, Paige, John, David, Kori, Greg, Jon, Devon, Beth, and Tom for coffee. Big thanks to each of you for allowing me into your lives and taking time out of your busy schedules to chit chat and even spark some story ideas.

Some people asked to meet in their offices rather than out and about. Thank you Eric for showing me around Cottage Grove City Hall and for welcoming me in with open arms – and thank you to Richard for jokingly offering me some many-days-old popcorn from your office when we met.

The first articles I wrote for The Chronicle were Fourth of July previews, and I spoke with Jason and Meredith. I was racking my brain for ways to ensure I didn’t make a fool out of myself with these two, but I remembered something through these phone calls: Interviews are truly just conversations. Thank you to Jason and Meredith for being extremely patient and thoughtful with a very fresh, straight-out-of-college reporter.

Pierre Weil, reporter 

July marked my one-year anniversary here at The Chronicle, and it was another busy month of coverage.

A big part of our sports coverage in my first year was high school sports, and we wanted to find a way to include high school sports coverage in our summer sports zone. The solution: a series of profiles on the five high school athletic directors that we cover.

You’ll see the first iteration of that series in this week’s edition, featuring Brandon, Creswell High’s athletic director. I’ve already sat down and talked with Justin, Thurston AD, and Garrett, Cottage Grove AD, and will have those profiles out in the coming week’s while also meeting with the final two ADs.

At a local newspaper, it’s often all hands on deck, and I had the pleasure of doing some non-sports coverage this month. I talked with Mike, James, and Jeff of D&D Automotive after they won the Ore Cart Races at Bohemia Mining Days.

Fifty First Names is a monthly column produced by The Chronicle editorial staff. It began in 2019 as column by publisher Noel Nash, and has since grown to include other staff members. The column is intended to give readers a behind-the-scenes glimpse of what the staff is up to each month. 



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