Photo by Shannon Broderick

Born in Cheyenne to an electrician and a carpenter, I spent most of my early life in the construction trades and military. Following a combat tour of Iraq in 2007 and subsequent years readjusting to civilian life, I laid down the sword and returned home to the windswept plains of Wyoming to pick up the pen in hopes of sharing a soldier’s perspective with the world.

I attended Laramie County Community College, where I had the privilege of studying under Rosalind “Roz" Schliske, an award-winning journalism instructor who introduced me to the world of muckraking through the college’s nationally recognized newspaper, Wingspan.

Between interning at the Laramie Boomerang, a daily newspaper in Laramie, Wyoming, and freelancing for the state’s two largest papers — The Casper Star Tribune and the Wyoming Tribune Eagle — I discovered a love for feature-length storytelling, specifically focused on veterans. Several of my features about Vietnam veterans were published in “They Served with Honor: Vietnam,” a book about Wyoming residents’ experiences during the war.

After college, I wrote for the Torrington Telegram, a twice-weekly newspaper in Torrington, Wyoming, before accepting a full-time position at the Laramie Boomerang, where I still contribute features weekly.

As one of mankind’s oldest art forms, storytelling is perhaps our most important means of communication. As a storyteller, I pride myself on developing a relationship with my sources and recounting their tales with accuracy and sensitivity, because not everything belongs on the page. But, those few words that are memorialized in ink become the legacy we leave for future generations.