Newman marks 20 years at New Richmond News
Willis Miller, the dean of newspapermen in western Wisconsin died last week. He had been involved in the business for 68 years and was still actively involved daily in the Hudson-Star Observer when he died at the age of 89.
There is a sense of awe among other newspaper people in hearing about Willis' longevity. This weekend I'll be marking 20 years at The News. I feel like I should still be considered a cub reporter when I look at all that Willis accomplished.
Once you get in this business, you can understand why some people might stay involved for 68 years. It gets into your blood.
By far, the overriding motivation in this job is people. People give me the responsibility of writing their stories. We get to write about their successes, their struggles, their aspirations. We are entrusted with how people's actions will be perceived by the public.
In covering sports, sometimes that role can be more challenging. In every game there are so many things to weigh. On the surface it is just who won and who played well. But there are so many questions under the surface. What strategies were the coaches using and were they effective? Did the players who succeeded do so because of favorable matchups or were their efforts a step forward in their progression? Were the reasons a player struggled his or her fault, or were they in a difficult role or against a tenacious defender? Was there someone who played a small role pivotal in the final outcome of the game? There are dozens of questions and things we try to notice during each game.
Personally, the biggest satisfaction in journalism is getting to know people and getting to write their stories. Conversely, the hardest thing is we get so busy sometimes that I see stories I would like to do and there is never the time available to write them.