H ello, readers. I wanted to take a moment to introduce some new people we have in our newsroom and officially say goodbye to others.

Emily Adair, the special sections editor, left in early June to move back to Missouri. She will be taking on a freelancing position from there, so we didn’t lose her entirely, but her presence in the newsroom is missed.

Alyssa Sutton said goodbye to us on Friday. She stepped into her role as a reporter in September when we needed her. A few summers ago, Sutton interned for us. She had turned in an impressive Letter to the Editor regarding an issue at Eastern Oregon University. She met with our editor at the time and walked out of his office with an internship.

Even though she ultimately decided not to pursue a career in journalism, while she was with us, she became an invaluable member of the newsroom. She has an eye for reporting, but will instead be pursuing a master’s degree in applied criminology at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff.

With the exit of Adair and Sutton, we have gained two reporters whom I’m very excited about.

Max Denning and Audrey Love are completing their first month at The Observer and have taken what has been a stressful past couple of weeks in stride.

Denning is a Portland native who went to Parkrose High School in Northeast Portland. After graduating from Parkrose, he attended Ithaca College in Ithaca, New York, to study journalism as a Park Scholar. While at Ithaca College, Denning spent most of his time working for The Ithacan, the student newspaper, which the Princeton Review ranked the No. 3 college newspaper in the country.

Outside of his time at Ithaca College, Denning interned and worked for two newspapers in Portland — the Portland Tribune and Willamette Week. At those newspapers Denning wrote about a number of topics including crime, gentrification and cultural events. When he’s not working, Denning likes to play basketball and golf or watch the
Mariners, Ducks and Blazers.

Among other topics, Denning will be writing about EOU, the City of Cove, business and legislation.

Love comes to us from Durant, Oklahoma, where she had lived since 2015, but she is a native of Southern California. Love graduated from Houston High School in Houston, Mississippi, then started college at Mississippi State, where she eventually majored in journalism. She later transferred to Southeastern Oklahoma State to finish her undergraduate degree. In the process, she wrote for The Reflector at MSU and The Southeastern at SOSU.

Among her interests when she isn’t working are traveling, writing for fun, reading and anything else family related. Among other topics, Love will be covering health, the Boardman to Hemingway Transmission Line, arts and entertainment and education.

When you see either of these two in the community, please introduce yourselves. If you have story ideas, let them know. It’s hard coming into a new community, and walking into a newsroom is more of a trial by fire than a gradual transition. Email them at mdenning@lagradeobserver.com or alove@lagrandeobserver.com .

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