Commentary: Business model lessons from Insider Louisville Wednesday, Aug 7 2019 

By David Jones Jr. I am sad that this is Insider Louisville’s last day. I’m proud of the work that the organization produced and gratified that more than 100,000 Louisvillians per day got news about our city from this publication. Other people – Insider Louisville’s fine staff – did the good work of digging for, […]

My IL Digest: Our Local Box, Happy Birthday Park, brilliant kids, the Churchill Downs bugler and more Thursday, May 9 2013 

Gabe Bullard in the deserted infield at Churchill
There's so much to love about my job with Insider Louisville

Sure there are drawbacks to every job. 

This one's pretty high-stress at times. Sometimes I find myself climbing the stairs to my office in the morning thinking, "Okay, you're not trying to cure cancer. Things shouldn't have you this worked up."

And as we all know, the comments-section of online journalism is where simple human decency goes to die. We're lucky at IL to not have too, too many trolls, but I assure you, my email in-box is a much thornier place than the comments section. (Really, we all can't agree that a childrens' museum might be a nice thing for the city? You disagree so heartily you have to get ugly about it? Think of the children!)

One of the things that bums me out about my job– and I'm sure all journalists, online, print and otherwise, feel the same way– is how ephemeral it is. I'll pour time and research and effort and care into a story. And at best it booms for a couple of days and gets passed around social media. At worst, it gets some reads and the quietly sinks down the homepage into the archives.

And that's sad. I guess it's a little bit about ego, sure. But it's more about the fact that these people that I report on are doing such remarkable things that I wish these pieces had a little more staying power. 

(Note: all links lead to the full article)

Like Dan Campbell and Jason Lee Menard of Our Local Box, a startup subscription box that is delivering a package full of Kentucky-made goodness to doorsteps across the country every month. I met them at Tony Boombozz, where the idea for their venture first germinated and listened to them wax passionately about ecommerce and buying local. 

Like Marsha Weinstein, who may be one of my new favorite Louisvillagers, who founded the effort to get a Happy Birthday Park installed on Fourth Street to honor the composers and educators Peggy and Mildred Hill. It had been a while since I last chatted with someone who shared my passion for US Women's History. And she brought some pretty serious deficits to my attention. 
According to Marsha Weinstein, there are over 2,400 historical markers in the state of Kentucky. Sixty of them commemorate the lives and accomplishments of women. A quick search of the database of historical markers in the state finds that Weinstein was probably being generous in her estimate. Of all the public memorials and artwork in downtown Louisville, none are dedicated to women.
I eventually confirmed this last fact with the department of Public Art. We have art designed by women (very little) but nothing honoring women. Weinstein is a powerhouse and a passionate advocate for women and girls. It was an honor to spend an hour picking her brain. 
Like Anthony Perry and Susana Almaguer Martinez, whom I didn't speak with but wrote about. These two Louisville high school seniors have 4.0 averages and a remarkable resume of acheievments. They've both been accepted by the Gates Foundation to receive Gates Millenium Scholarships– full rides to the schools of their choice. Perry, from St. Francis, will go to UPenn. Martinez, who has only been in the US for 2 years and attends Seneca, will be going to USF. 
Like Steve Buttleman, the official bugler of Churchill Downs, whom Linda and I interviewed on Louisville, Not Kentucky. The story about our behind-the-scenes adventures at Churchill Downs' Opening Night is one of my all-time favorite stories, I think.
Sometimes, of course, it is all about me. Right? Even though I was sick and cranky, I think my recap of who's going to be performing at the State Fair is still pretty dead-on. Again, pissy comments, but not not fun. Likewise, my rundown of what wasn't allowed at Churchill Downs during the Derby. Jeffrey Lee Puckett of the CJ did it better (video!) later, but I did it first. 
Those articles are just from the past 10 days and represent only a quarter of what I wrote during those days for IL.
I was also interviewed by the fabulous Erin Keane for WFPL's news special on the Great Gatsby and Louisville. The two of us went in search of Daisy Fay's house in the Cherokee Triangle. It was a lovely way to spend a lovely spring morning. You can listen to the story at the link. (you can pick up my part at around 10:00, but if you're into Gatsby at all, don't miss the whole special from the start). Spoiler alert: We didn't find it. We don't think anyone can. That wasn't a journalism-thing. It was a former-English-teacher-thing. But still, part of a good couple of weeks.
Thanks to all of you who bring me great stories or who ARE great stories. You make my life and job so much better.

Thursday Randomness: What have I been up to? Thursday, Oct 18 2012 

Is it the middle of October already? My goodness. Time really flies when you're having fun.

And, gentle readers, I am having so much fun these days!

Sure, money is way tight, and I am still struggling with what to do about my lack of insurance. But if you zapped those two stressors from my life (anyone? anyone?), I'd be fool happy.

I'm totally crazy about my new freelancing life. I have the best readers (that's YOU!). My friends never cease to amaze me. And The Guy and I just passed the one year of dating mark, and I couldn't be more in love.

So, what else have I been up to? 

  • Tomorrow marks the end of my second week of employment at Insider Louisville. Depending on who you talk to, I'm either the "Deputy Director of Content" or the "Associate Managing Editor." I'm not really hung up on titles; whatever you want to call me, I'm having a hell of a good time. I've been helping out around the joint, writing 2-5 articles a day, working on vetting freelancers and much more. We're still moving into our new office in NuLu, and every morning when I drive to work I have to pinch myself. Ever since my job hunt began, I've had a superficial goal of either working downtown or in NuLu, and here I am with my own desk, an endless supply of good coffee, and a job that I can't wait to go to when I wake up. My bosses respect me. I feel like I add a lot to the organization. And I'm getting paid to do cool stuff and write about it. My fingers and toes are crossed that this turns into a full-time gig with benefits someday soon. (And my fingers and toes are crossed that I continue to be this happy with this job).
  • For the past six weeks or so, I've been working part time as a "Twitter Specialist" for 520 East Brands. Shane is a dream to work for, and I'm thrilled to be the "twitter voice" for many beloved local and national brands. I knew one day my Twitter addiction would pay off!
  • Chipman Creative was hired two months ago to "ghost blog" for local real estate agent, WordCamp maestro, and fellow Start-Up Weekend attendee, Scott Hack. We did the true "ghost" thing for a little while, but over the past few weeks, we've started to put my name on the posts. So if you're looking for more of my posts, follow Scott's blog. And obviously, if you have any real estate needs, you should contact Finish Line Realty. Scott is awesome.
  • Last Saturday, my Louisville, Not Kentucky co-host Linda and I worked a booth at the Flea off Market. We signed people up for our mailing list and interviewed people for Episode 7 and beyond. We met lots of listeners and even got to interview the Mayor. It was a beautiful day, and we're looking forward to doing it again in November.
  • Tuesday, a group of Loueyville readers and friends volunteered to answer phones at the NPOTM, Louisville Public Media fund drive. Thanks to Kara, Dawn, Bethany, Stephanie, Stephen, Ashlee, and Linda for coming along. We ate lots of pizza and talked to some great LPM supporters on the phone.
So now, besides this blog, my twitter, my facebook, and my pinterest, you can now catch me on Insider Louisville, the Finish Line Realty blog, Louisville Not Kentucky, and as the voice of brands you know and love on Twitter. 

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