A Tale of Betrayal Sunday, May 26 2013 

A Tale of Betrayal.


Introduction Thursday, May 23 2013 

American Girl Abroad is my raw account of love, life, travels, marriage, divorce and the bittersweet notion of starting over again.

Attitudes Towards Legalizing Marijuana Thursday, May 2 2013 


Critique 3 Thursday, Apr 18 2013 

title=”Where Congress Stands on Guns “>http://projects.propublica.org/guns/#bill1

The news value of this topic is of much importance recently in the aftermath of the school shooting in New England. Since the shooting, law makers have been fighting to either restrict gun laws or keep them the same. The nation has been divided, and the President is catching a lot of heat on his decision to restrict gun laws.

I think this graph is a little unorganized. At first glance it is very hard to determine what exactly the question is that is being asked to Congress. There is no clear title, and only the answers of the Congress are clearly stated. However, the answers listed are not even precise. The answers given are; Not Contacted, Will Vote No, Likely No, Undecided/No Comment, Likely Yes, and Will Vote Yes.

I can’t seem to make sense of the data, and I don’t think their is enough context to make sense of it. “Likely Yes” or “Likely No” is not substantial information. That’s like saying “maybe,” which to me is not a clear or concise answer.

The interactive feature is pretty user-friendly. It is easy to click on the different members of Congress and see their bios. It is also easy to use the side appendix to break down the members according to their political standing and party. It is a very simple chart.

I think that this chart has a lot of flash without much substance, because as I mentioned before their is no title or question above the chart. I’m not sure if i’m looking at the “will vote no” section as people who are voting no to restrict gun control or people voting no to not restrict gun control.

Overall, I would say that this chart needs better labeling and titles. I think the “likely no/yes” columns should be taken out until their is a concise answer instead of just saying maybe.

Florida’s top 5 beaches Thursday, Apr 4 2013 

Minks family vacation on Navarre Beach Thursday, Feb 28 2013 

Critique #1 Thursday, Feb 14 2013 

CBC News published a story about how Beyonce’s publicist wants “unflattering” photos removed: http://www.cbc.ca/news/yourcommunity/2013/02/beyonces-publicist-wants-unflattering-photos-removed.html. I thought the article was well written and had a lot of useful components to it. The author published all seven of the pictures in question and he also used links to other times Beyonce was published without makeup, which she didn’t seem to mind.

The article also displays an image of the e-mail that Beyonce’s publicist sent to Buzzfeed asking them to take down the photos.

The article stated, “Rather than remove the offending photos, Buzzfeed did what the viral content aggregator does best by republishing them in a post called “The “Unflattering” Photos Beyoncé’s Publicist Doesn’t Want You To See.”

The article also included other people’s tweets on the matter. I thought this was a nice element because the reader could see normal people’s opinions on the subject.

However, It would have been nice to have a video clip of Beyonce performing in action and showing just how fierce she was.

The article had a lot of information about this topic, and their were quotes and links from all different people voicing their opinion about Beyonce’s pictures. The story was well-written and easily readable.

Overall, I would say this was a great news package that was interesting and would hold a reader’s attention until the end.

University of West Florida encased in nature Tuesday, Feb 12 2013 

  1. The University of West Florida is situated on one of Florida’s most scenic views. Lined with 1,600 acres of lush woodlands and the rolling currents of the Escambia River, UWF is home to not only students, faculty and staff but also home to a family of Gopher Tortoises, American Bald Eagles, and is the root for rare species of plants.
  2. The Edward Ball Nature Trail is one of two nature trails the campus offers for outdoor adventuring. The trail differs from the Baars-Firestone Wildlife Sanctuary by its wooden boardwalk, still water views, and is home to a three-legged alligator by the name of Captain Thunder. The Baars-Firestone trail is an unpaved trail encased with beech and pine trees that tower above. It is home to a pair of Bald Eagles that can often be spotted high up in their nest.
  3. The Michael I. Cousens Herbarium can be found in Building 58 on campus and is breeding ground to as many as 900 different plant species. According to the link below, no other campus in the eastern United States has that many plant species on campus.
  4. Many students on campus stop to capture the beauty of UWF.
  5. On the bluffs near Pensacola Bay, UWF is a great university AND a nature sanctuary. A beautiful place! #jou3342 #JRLWEB http://pic.twitter.com/mzQifPio
  6. The Pensacola Camellia Garden was a gift from the Pensacola Camellia Club and UWF Retired Employees Association. http://pic.twitter.com/vJbqiSXg
  7. UWF’s campus offers 10 miles of scenic hills, woodlands, and views of the Escambia River. What a site. #JRLWEB #J3342 http://pic.twitter.com/wYNGCKHR
  8. @Lynne_kp @EmilyElaine Canon Green, the centralized location on UWF campus where most activities occur #j3342 #JRLWEB http://pic.twitter.com/K3extPb4
  9. UWF is a fine place to be, even on a rainy day! Certainly one of the most scenic campuses I’ve visited #jou3342 #JRLWEB http://pic.twitter.com/FBF1HHe2

Women to serve in combat roles Tuesday, Jan 29 2013 

U.S. military leaders have lifted the band on women serving in combat positions opening up thousands of combat jobs and potentially special operational positions.

According to Foxnew.com, the groundbreaking move recommended by the Joint Chiefs of Staff overturns a 1994 rule banning women from being assigned to smaller ground combat units. Women already make up 15 percent of the military, and many have served in Iraq and Afghanistan finding themselves experiencing combat roles.

Npr.org asked male and female troops about their thoughts on what the new policy might mean. Many of them voiced their opinion on meeting the standards in place for such combat positions.

It will no doubt be tough for women to meet the physical portion of combat standards, along with the emotional portion as well.

What does this new standard mean for the Gulf Coast? There are multiple bases in our area used by each branch. An influx of more women troops will most likely be stationed in our area.

The 6th Ranger Training Battalion and 7th Group Special Forces are just two of the Army’s elite combat positions that are stationed near Eglin, AFB.

Hurlburt Field is also a special operational base for the Air Force with many combat positions now available for women.

Sean Caraberry of NPR spoke to 1st Sgt. Keith Williams about the new policy.

“Women are touch, women can do the job,” Williams said. “My thing is, if you’ve got my back, you’ve been through training I’ve been through, you are qualified, you can hit that target like I can, then I want to have the female soldier with me. Let the females prove they can hold this standard. My hat’s off to the first female that makes it all the way through and that is doing the training and doing the same thing that guys do.”

With this new policy in place comes hesitation from the public and other officials. CNN.com reported that, “America’s ongoing war against terror-supporting states and terror networks, commenced after 9/11, has seen an increased combat role for women in the U.S. armed forces. According to recent news accounts, more than 800 have been wounded and more than 130 have died. Clearly, women have fought honorably, bravely and with great distinction.”

According to the washintonpost.com, “women already serve in military combat roles in most of Europe. It’s permitted in all Scandinavian countries, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, with the United States and the United Kingdom the last hold-outs”

With new combat positions opening up, the Gulf Coast will experience a boost in its local economy. More jobs mean more people.

New area director of the American Cancer Society, Cal Brooks Monday, Nov 19 2012 

This past week I worked on an article about the new area executive director of the American Cancer Society, Cal Brooks. It will be featured in the November issue of Pensacola Magazine.

Here is the story below:

The staff and volunteers of the American Cancer Society Panhandle Area, Florida Division, welcome new Area Executive Director, Cal Brooks to their organization.

Brooks’ passion to fight back against cancer has been evident in the many years he’s spent dedicated to the cause. A Tallahassee native, Brooks, along with his family created a non-profit organization “Cards for a Cure,” which has raised over $500,000 for Tallahassee cancer patients.

Unfortunately, Brooks knows all to well how this fatal disease can affect loved ones, and he has made it his mission to help those suffering with cancer.

“Over the last seven years, my family experienced my sister-in-law being diagnosed with stage three breast cancer,” Brooks said. “Two years later, my mother was diagnosed with stage three cancer also.”

After being one of his mother’s caregivers during her treatment, Brooks knew he wanted to do more to fight back against this horrible disease.

“The more I grew to know about the impact that the American Cancer Society was having in this battle, the more I knew this was a place for me,” Brooks said.

Brooks started “Cards for a Cure” to honor his sister-in-law after she was diagnosed with breast cancer. The annual event was widely received by Tallahassee, and in the following six years they recognized local breast cancer champions as the event’s honoree.

“My hope is that my passion to fight back against cancer and my experience in philanthropic events will translate into an energized Panhandle Area for the ACS where volunteers and staff make a huge impact in the fight against cancer,’ Brooks said.

Brooks’ accomplishments have been numerous, but if you ask him to choose his highest achievement, he would tell you it’s his children.

“I take great pride in my two children, Jay Thomas and Grayson Hadley,” Brooks said. “I’ve very proud to show them that you can make a difference.”

Before coming to the ACS, Brooks was most recently a Government Liaison with the Office of Agricultural Water Policy. He joined the department of Agricultural and Consumer Services in 2009 where he led the Rural Family Lands Program through the purchasing of $10 million of development rights on agricultural lands through conservation easements.

Prior to working for the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, he was a vice president of two banks: Bank of America and Guaranty National Bank as well as owner of a local mortgage office in Tallahassee and Thomasville. His focus as a local finance officer was to help others through wise financial strategies and leading a sales force through coaching with effective best practices.

He also served as president of the Tallahassee Community College Alumni Association and board member of Tallahassee Community College Foundation Board.

Additionally, he provided consulting services to the Children’s Campaign, Inc., a Florida non-profit organization that seeks to shape public policy for benefit of Florida’s children. He also served as a Board Member of the American Lung Association. Tallahassee Chapter.

“He’s a really dynamic and passionate guy,” American Cancer Society Community Representative BJ Davis said. “He’s been through the rigors of our Tampa interview process, we are all confidant he’s going to make a great impact with his leadership of the organization.”

Brooks will be overseeing the day-to-day operations of American Cancer Society income development; priority special event management; patient services; volunteer and staff recruitment and development; mission based programs in the major Panhandle markets and outlying communities between Pensacola and Tallahassee.

“I am impressed that the Society is dedicated to driving outcomes,” Brooks said. “ It is important to me that I work with the community, and there is no organization that understand that better than the ACS.”

Brooks’ sister-in-law and mother are both cancer survivors.

For more information on how the American Cancer Society is helping people stay well, get well, find cures, and fight back, visit www.cancer.org or call 1-800-ACS-2345

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