I am a news reporter, writer and investigative journalist specializing in street news, plus Indigenous, civil rights and environment reporting
Began my career over 30 years ago as a young teenager in Augusta, GA after moving south during the middle of high school.
I was co-coordinator of the 1986 original James Brown Appreciation Day in Augusta, GA, where the Godfather of Soul was always trashed by the local media who found no reasons to print or report anything positive about the music icon.
Mr. Terence Dicks was the other co-coordinator and most recently served as chair of the Augusta Human Relations Commission and still a member of the Georgia Clients Council.
Mr. Brown taught us to “fight the good fight” by battling all forms of racism and evil while not uttering a bad word about those who try to block justice, respect, fairness and kindness to all.
As a child, I also lived in the Harbert, Michigan home built by late poet Carl Sandburg – where the legendary authored penned some of his greatest works including his Chicago works and Lincoln papers.
The huge home had a sundeck on the top and a cool walk-in safe in the basement.
The neighborhood – called Birchwood – has numerous cottages used for other purposes by the Sandburgs including the milk house where they milked goats.
When my parents remodeled the fourth floor of the home that stands atop the Lake Michigan sand dunes/bluffs – they found items that belonged to Mr. Sandburg concealed in the walls including prescription bottles (with name), reading glasses, and a small, thin metal stamp with his name.
I have worked for dozens of newspapers and radio and TV stations in GA and MI.
I am the volunteer media advisor for several large interfaith environmental projects involving Native Americans across Upper Peninsula of MI including the Turtle Island Project, the Interfaith Earth Healing Initiative, Earth Keeper Initiative and the Manoomin (Wild Rice) Project.
The new Interfaith Earth Healing Initiative has many projects planned for Earth Day 2008, plus restoring bee and butterfly habitat to help with pollinating plants around the Midwest following the disappearance of billions of bees. The Earth Healing Initiative is arranging the interfaith volunteers and participants for the EPA Great Lakes 2008 Earth Day Challenge.
The Earth Keeper group has many environmental projects including an annual Earth Day Clean Sweep at two dozen free drop off sites across a 400 mile area of northern Michigan that has collected over 370 tons of household hazardous waste since 2005 (total collection time: 9 hours or 3 hours each year).
The 2007 Earth Keeper Pharmaceutical Clean Sweep collected over one ton of drugs plus $5000,000 in narcotics in only three hours. Some 2,000 residents participated and many brought in pharmaceuticals for their family, friends and neighbors.
In 2006, some 10,000 people dropped off over 320 tons of old/broken computers, cell phones and other electronic waste, all of which was recycled. In 2005, residents turned in 45 tons of household poisons and vehicle batteries.
In 2007, over one ton of pharmaceuticals and $500,000 in narcotics was turned in by more than 2,000 people at 19 sites – plus personal care products likes shampoos, perfumes etc.
The Manoomin (Wild Rice) Project teaches at-risk teens (just sentenced in juvenile court) to respect nature and themselves by having American Indian guides escort them to very remote lakes and streams in northern Michigan to plant and care for wild rice.
The teens conduct water quality and other tests to determine the best conditions for the once native grain to survive.
The newly formed Turtle Island project was founded by Rev. Lynn Hubbard in Munising, Michigan.
Environment projects are being planned as well as regional and national conferences on respecting the culture and heritage of indigenous peoples aka First Nation peoples (American Indians).
Rev. Hubbard is providing a platform for American Indians to be heard – unedited by whites. – whom Rev. Hubbard says don’t have the knowledge or right to speak on behalf of Native Americans.
I have always specialized in civil rights, outdoor, environmental, cops and courts reporting thanks to my late mentor Jay Mann (Jan Tillman Hutchens), an investigative reporter in Augusta, who lived by the books “Illusions” and “Jonathon Livingston Seagull.”
I love to fish, hunt, camp and skydive. A member of the Delta Chi national fraternity, I was very active in student projects through my schools years from Junior Achievement, to all forms of band (played cornet) to cross country, track, and football (I wasn’t very good).