The Tragic Loss of a True Hero

207d85a87a54d3750a88b69eff7a7ce773157_mediumIn these tumultuous times, stories of selfless Samaritans are almost always drowned out by the seemingly endless stream of headlines involving senseless violence.

While it might not seem like it, heroes do still exist. We just have to look a little harder to find them. Michael Brady was one such hero.

Last Friday afternoon, Brady was walking down Tunnel Boulevard when he noticed a fire on the roof of Moss’ Place restaurant. Feeling compelled to help a neighbor in need, Brady ran to the business next door to alert them to the situation and ask for a fire extinguisher.

After being handed a portable extinguisher, Brady ran back over to Moss’ Place, grabbed a ladder and climbed to the roof to put out the fire. When Chattanooga police and firefighters arrived on the scene minutes later, Brady yelled down to them to let them know he had already extinguished the blaze.

Then, tragedy struck.

Read the rest of this article at

Adventures in Variety: Writing for “Locally Crafted”

tumblr_inline_o3dhtcF8bt1sd9kh0_500One of the most enjoyable aspects of working independently is getting to work on a wide variety of projects.

Some days, I write editorials for daily newspapers. Other days, I might be asked to write a video script for a nonprofit agency or funny copy for a company’s billboard campaign. Seldom has a week gone by in the last couple of years when I haven’t written or edited (or both) website copy for a business or organization, and I’ve had a blast managing social media campaigns for school systems, manufacturers, and charitable organizations. I am currently working on two major copywriting campaigns for a major hospital, as well as drafting some marketing copy for a top regional university, and I recently completed the latest in a handful of opinion pieces on public policy that I’ve been recruited to write for a major PR firm in the nation’s capitol.

Adding to that variety are the articles I’ve had the pleasure of writing recently for Windstream Internet’s “Locally Crafted” blog. A great site for travelers, “Locally Crafted” seeks to provide readers with the nation’s best in independent local culture—from small business owners and craftspeople to artists and entrepreneurs. During my time writing for them, I’ve profiled:

The Crash Pad—An upscale hostel located in the heart of Chattanooga’s revitalized Southside district
Paradise Garden—A folk art oasis created by the famed preacher, R.E.M. album cover artist, and “Tonight Show” guest, Howard Finster
Wildseed Farms—A stunningly gorgeous wildflower farm (and much, much more), located in the Hill Country of Texas

All of these spots are offbeat, fantastic, and worth your time in you’re ever in the area. Click on the links to learn more about them, and check out “Locally Crafted” for more great suggestions.

Why David Carroll should be our next superintendent

b383c5d1e1534a7fc6ecf6c774fb06e447145_mediumAs you’ve probably heard by now, the Hamilton County School Board will vote on Superintendent Rick Smith’s request for a buyout March 7. Whether the school board agrees to the buyout or not, Smith’s time as superintendent is essentially over, as he’s requested (through his attorney) to be placed on paid leave through June 30.

Smith’s departure means that, once again, the school board will have to find a new superintendent sooner than it had planned or wanted. And though the selection process has yet to begin, I’d like to nominate someone: WRCB co-anchor and “School Patrol” reporter David Carroll.

Many in the community would likely agree that there is something slightly off with our superintendent recruitment and retention efforts. We could stand to shake things up a bit. We would do well to explore new avenues in our search for candidates, while at the same time looking for someone with a solid knowledge of the school system.

I propose that Carroll is that candidate.

Read the rest of this article at