I’ve lived in Richmond since 1988 and my love for the James River and Richmond‘s outdoor adventures are the biggest reasons why I’ve never wanted to leave. In the past seven years, I’ve dedicated more and more of my free time to volunteering and helping to develop and protect the great recreational amenities and natural beauty of the James River Park.
I am a positive person, a team player and sports have always been part of my life. I am a father, husband, cyclist, paddler, hiker, photographer, writer, soccer player, gardener, environmentalist and someone who cares greatly about where he lives. I’m a “take the stairs” kind of guy and find ways to combine fitness with tasks — like biking to work, job assignments, volunteer duties, stores, etc. I am teaching my kids to do the same thing. I am a buy local kind of guy and support any businesses that are friendly to cycling, walking, the outdoors and that help make Richmond a better place to live.
I’ve had a wide variety of experience with Richmond’s media, which I’ve been a part of since graduating from the University of Richmond in 1992. I have worked for the Richmond Times-Dispatch, NBC12 and back again to Richmond.com (which merged with the Times-Dispatch in December 2014). I’ve also written my own blogs starting in 2008, including the James River News Hub and RichmondOutside.com. I’ve managed several roles, but the past few years have been my favorite as I have been able to participate in a wide variety of projects and events and multiple types of media and social media to produce my work. Social media (mainly Twitter and Facebook) is big part of my daily routine.
Since I first heard the term “greenway,” I’ve been fascinated with the concept and as a volunteer and journalist have tried to help educate and push Richmond to help create more park connections. I completed my Master’s degree in Urban Planning at VCU in May 2015 — as a generalist — in large part because of my dedication to becoming part of the solution to push outdoor initiatives and help Richmond’s great parks and recreational opportunities.
In my free time, volunteering has been my passion. I’ve made great connections and good relationships with many river and park groups and volunteer organizations. Retired James River Park manager Ralph White is a good friend and I helped organize and rally the river groups to push the city to begin the process to find his replacement. Fortunately, they hired the best man for the job, Nathan Burrell.
I am a member of the Friends of James River Park, James River Outdoor Coalition (paddling), Richmond MORE (mountain biking and trail building) and Friends of Bryan Park. I am currently not on any boards for these groups, because as a member of the media, I’ve felt that may compromise my reporting or show bias to these groups. I have also volunteered often with Enrichmond Foundation, Hands on Greater Richmond, James River Association and Chesapeake Bay Foundation.
I have been an active advocate of the development of the Richmond Riverfront and I’ve participated with the architecture firm hired to develop the plan, pushing for paddling in the Haxall Canal and to finally fix the VEPCO Levee at Brown’s Island. Those two developments would be tremendous assets to Richmond and greatly add to our outdoor fitness landscape.
My hope is to find a place to work and Get Things Done. I’ve done what I can as a writer and a journalist. I’ve written about those who get things done long enough, now I’d like to be part of the solution as a planner.