I reported previously that Dave Moller, The Union’s most experienced reporter, left to become Editor of the Louisiana Press Journal in Louisiana, Mo. — his home state. (No “goodbye” from The Union to Dave in its pages, however, which would have shown some class). Jeff Ackerman now has the longest tenure at The Union newsroom, with a crew of mostly younger reporters.
Here’s the first installment of Dave’s column in his new job. It’s a good read. The link is here.
“Louisiana Press Journal
9/8/2010 1:07:13 PM
Editor’s Note: This is the first installment of Editor Dave Moller’s column entitled “The Buck Stops Here.”
In mid-June I was at my son’s high school graduation, wondering what the future would bring the family.
After 18 years in the Sierra mountains of Northern California, I’d had enough of the prices, attitudes and governmental refusal to grasp reality. My wife and I couldn’t afford the $300,000 median price homes and moving was on the horizon.
I began looking for a new job right after Steven’s graduation, figuring I’d be leaving some time in 2011.
But soon I found the Press-Journal had an opening and I jumped on the opportunity. Things happened quickly and 10 weeks later, I took over from Bertha Yoder as your new editor.
I realize I have large shoes to fill, but I’m up to the task after 35 years in the weekly and daily newspaper business.
Although I came here from California, I am not a native of the state that now really is going crazy. My deceased parents both went to Webster Groves High School in St. Louis County.
I grew up in Kirkwood and graduated from high school there in 1969. I went to college in Missouri and started my career at the Cuba Free Press in Crawford County.
I eventually became city editor at the Jefferson City News Tribune. I also ran a string of weekly newspapers in California, before switching over to my last job as senior writer for a small Sierra daily.
Many of my old friends and relatives still live in Missouri and my sister lives in the Chicago suburbs. With my wife’s family in Little Rock, Ark., Louisiana became a great spot to land.
My oldest son, Ben, just got out of the Navy and served in Iraq as a medical corpsman with the Marines. He is going to college on his GI bill near Sacramento, Calif. He will come to visit soon, I’m sure.
My wife, Pam, and son Steven arrived last week. They will be looking for work once they’ve acclimated themselves and visited all the relatives.
If you are wondering, my political bent is right down the middle. I’ve been a decline-to- state voter for years because of my profession and a desire to remain independent.
I vote for the person I feel is best for the community, not for the party.
Being a journalist has forced me to see all sides of an issue and that molded my moderate political stance.
Some people become upset when they can’t pin me as a pure conservative or liberal, but I consider that their problem.
I believe in keeping a good eye on what we are doing to the earth, but I am wary of environmentalists who create controversy just to keep their jobs.
In California’s Sierra, I saw them use the spotted owl to destroy an entire culture of once-thriving logging towns.
Fiscal responsibility in government is pretty big on my plate, because I know what happens when the checkbook doesn’t balance at home.
At the same time, I’m not against giving government assistance to someone to help them out of a jam. I just don’t particularly think anyone should be allowed to rely on welfare as a lifestyle.
I am not tolerant of discrimination based on race, age or sex. I was very pleased to see three youths of various colors riding their bikes together in town last week.
My Goldwater Republican mother and Central Methodist College in Fayette professors taught me there are many paths to God, and I believe that as well.
My father taught me early on to work hard and admit my mistakes. That philosophy has brought me a pretty good reputation for integrity and honesty.
If I make a mistake, I want to hear about it. Accuracy is what I strive for.
I will have an open door policy and you can contact me at any time.
I hope to meet many of you soon and I must thank those who have already welcomed me to town.
I am at your service.”
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