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Editors note: A thank you to my staff

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Editors note: A thank you to my staff

Mariah Valles, Editor-in-Chief

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Well, friends.

This is the last issue of winter quarter. It’s hard to believe it has already come and gone. This was my first quarter as The Observer’s Editor-in-Chief.

Prior to this quarter, The Observer was a 12-page newspaper. One of the goals I set when I stepped into my position was to increase the amount of pages in the paper. I wasn’t sure if it was realistic with the small staff we have, but thanks to the team who followed behind me, we published 16 pages every week. Except issue seven, of course.

Issue seven was a 24-page newspaper.

This wouldn’t have been possible without the editors in the newsroom who took my unrealistic ideas and made them reality.

Alexa Murdock, the Assistant Editor who saved the day on many occasions. Murdock has helped me grow into my position and has always kept the staff’s goals in sight. Unfortunately for us, Murdock will be leaving The Observer staff after this issue to pursue an internship and graduate in spring. Murdock, I couldn’t thank you enough for all you’ve done for me over the past year.

Cassandra Hays, the first-time Scene Editor who stepped up to the plate and picked up the process insanely fast. Within a short time, Hays was caught up to editors who have been in their positions for multiple quarters. Tonight, in the midst of newsroom madness, Hays offered to design the Opinion section. This is one of the many times when Hays went above and beyond. Thank you for always being willing to step in and help out.

Jack Belcher, the News Editor in his second term who was always willing to come back into the office after finalizing pages to make last minute edits. Belcher has grown in his design, and will continue to do so. He’s become a stronger editor who offers to help with classes and plan lessons to benefit The Observer staff. Thank you for continuing to grow.

Hanson Lee, the Sports Editor who designed five pages of sports content for the 24-page issue. He was ambitious and eager to follow through with the special edition of the paper. For the amount of extra time he had to spend, he never lost sight of the purpose behind that issue. Lee continues to have the paper in mind and its best interest as a priority. Thank you for taking part in executing my unrealistic ideas.

Heather Stewart, the Photo Editor who stepped into the position in fall with no journalism experience will move on from the paper to pursue her Geography degree. Stewart, being in charge of the visuals for the paper, played a huge role in the tone of the publication. Even with no prior journalism experience, Stewart always shared her ideas and inserted herself positively in the newsroom. Thank you for all you’ve done for the progression of the paper.

Rune Torgersen, the first-time Copy Desk Chief who has added a welcoming tone into the newsroom. Prior to this quarter the newsroom was always so bland and boring. Torgersen played a role in creating an inviting atmosphere that made people want to come to work. He often offered to play music, made jokes and kept things light-hearted when they needed to be. Thank you for helping create a positive work environment.

Ben Wheeler, the first-time Online and Social Media Editor who took the job head on. Wheeler always offered to write extra content for the print version of the paper, and engaged with our readers through social media platforms. By the end of the quarter, Wheeler passed my first quarter as Online and Social Media Editor by miles. Thank you for being willing to adapt and take criticism.

The Staff, who week-by-week followed my leadership. I said this during our last class of the quarter, but I saw an immense amount of growth from production week one to production week eight. Sometimes we see reporters who plateau in the middle of the quarter, but that was not the case with this staff. I look forward to seeing those returning continue to grow.

Thank you to all of you who read and pick us up. I’m writing this mid-production night and should probably go work on finalizing pages.

As always if you have any concerns, questions or news tips, email us at [email protected].

Best,

Mariah Valles

Editor-in-Chief

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