Archive for the ‘Community’ Category

Recent Projects and Summer Publications

In Community, Environment, Food, news, Roller Derby, Sustainability on June 27, 2010 at 6:05 pm

I took this photo on the day of Summer Solstice while driving back from Chicago. The storm rolled in above me and I couldn't catch up to it, but I got to observe its splendor from afar. A fabulous way to ring in the new sweltering season.

Hello again.  I’ve been busy, busy, to say the least.  HELEN magazine was released last week with the roller derby story on the cover.  It seems to have been well-received by both the community and the Lafayette Brawlin’ Dolls.  I will post a copy of the story online as soon as I can get a PDF uploaded.  If you’d like a hard copy of the magazine, please let me know and I’ll send one out to you, gladly.  Last night the Brawlin’ Dolls had another home bout. Read the rest of this entry »


Book Review: The Story of Stuff by Annie Leonard

In Community, Economy, Environment, Good Books, Sustainability on June 7, 2010 at 9:37 pm

The Story of Stuff explains where all our stuff comes from and how much damage it does to the Earth and our bodies.

Read the original story at the Conducive Chronicle.

Annie Leonard’s new book tells the story of our obsessive relationship with our possessions, and unless we alter that relationship, the story doesn’t end well.

The book, titled “The Story of Stuff: How Our Obsession with Stuff is Trashing the Planet, our Communities, and Our Health – And a Vision for Change,” is the in-depth follow-up to The Story of Stuff video, which millions of people have viewed across the world.  The book chronicles Leonard’s discoveries over a 10 year period in which she traveled the world in search of answers about where our stuff comes from and where it goes when we’re done with it. Read the rest of this entry »

Roller Derby: A Preview

In Community, Economy, Roller Derby on May 24, 2010 at 3:28 pm

I turned the roller derby story in to HELEN this morning.  Here is a short excerpt of the story:

…The gym where I’d watched the Lafayette Brawlin’ Dolls practice was transformed into a stadium so packed, there was standing room only.  A huge sign hung from the rafters, welcoming guests into The Brawl House. The fans were outrageous, cheering over the bumping music, waving signs, “LBD” painted on their cheeks.  The most daring spectators sat in the “suicide seats,” located at the corners of the track, where girls on skates were most likely to tumble into the crowd.  “You have to be 18 years or older to sit there and you better have good insurance,” the DJ warned the crowd.

Read the rest of this entry »

Lafayette Brawlin’ Dolls win first home bout against the Flint City Derby Girls

In Community, Roller Derby on May 23, 2010 at 4:21 pm

Photo by Deb Swihart - Jen Van Jam leans into a turn, speeding away from blockers as the lead jammer. Jen was instrumental in Saturday night's victory against Flint City.

They won!  They won by 18 points!  The bout was the most fun I’ve had in a really long time.

Read the rest of this entry »

Defunding Attacks Inspire Increased Donations to Indiana Planned Parenthood

In Community, media scandal, news, planned parenthood on May 18, 2010 at 11:51 pm

Protesters and supporters alike hold signs at a Planned Parenthood rally. The organization has been under the microscope over the last two years after being accused of covering up the sexual abuse of children.

Read the original story at the Conducive Chronicle.

It’s been nearly two years since Planned Parenthood of Indiana entered a storm of heated controversy and economic hardship that hasn’t quite settled.

The organization was accused of harboring sexual predators in 2008 after undercover videos surfaced showing clinicians allegedly ignoring instances of statutory rape. Less than a year after the videos, the organization lost more than $1 million in federal funding.

“It was like this perfect storm,” says Betty Cockrum, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Indiana. “Fortunately I tend to become more calm in the eye of the storm.”

Read the rest of this entry »

Updates on Planned Parenthood, Indiana Schools, and Roller Derby

In Community, economic meltdown, Economy, media scandal, planned parenthood, Roller Derby, Schools on May 12, 2010 at 2:08 am

Hello all,

I know it’s been a while since I’ve updated.  I’ve been continuing my research on both the Indiana public schools and Planned Parenthood of Indiana.  I’ve also been attending regular practices with the Lafayette Brawlin’ Dolls (our local roller derby team) for the upcoming cover story in HELEN magazine.

Read the rest of this entry »

Updates on School Funding Story

In Community, economic meltdown, Harrison High School, Layoffs, Schools, Uncategorized on April 28, 2010 at 10:32 pm

Tony Bennett, Indiana Superintendent of Public Instruction (photo courtesy of the Indiana Department of Education Web site)

I contacted Tony Bennett, the Indiana Superintendent of Public Instruction, in hopes of sitting down and interviewing him for my story on public schools, layoffs, budget cuts, funding, etc.

His office responded to me, and said he would be happy to meet with me.  I’m not sure when that will happen, but in the mean time, they sent me this article for background research.  It’s an examination of the correlation between federal and state funding and student performance in public schools.  It claims that an increase in funding has not improved pupil performance in the past, and probably won’t work now.

Read the rest of this entry »

City Foods Co-op Story in HELEN Magazine

In Community, Economy, news, Sustainability on April 28, 2010 at 6:24 pm

Hey all.  Check out my latest story in HELEN Magazine about the City Foods Co-op.  Its organizers are in the process of raising support and finding members.  A co-op in Lafayette would be fantastic!