In the words of Austin Powers, allow myself to introduce ... myself.
I'm Seth Wright. It's not a name you've seen all that often in these pages but I'm definitely not a newcomer to the Southern Standard. I've been working largely behind the scenes here at the paper for the last 25 years. It really doesn't seem like it's been all that long until I'm reminded by people like my co-worker Bethany Porter.
Upon first meeting Bethany she asked when I started working at the Southern Standard. I told her I began in May, 1997. She said, "oh, that was before I was born." Thanks, Bethany. I suddenly feel like I need a walker.
Up until this week, my entire tenure here has been spent in editorial composing where my duties primarily included designing the overall look of the newspaper, making graphics, laying out pages, writing headlines, adjusting photos and drawing the occasional cartoon.
I'm still responsible for those things but now I'll be taking a step out from behind the curtain and taking a more public role in the newspaper as managing editor. And to answer the question I've been asked the most - yes, I will assume the role of Business Pulse writer. I'm no James but I'll do the best I can.
Managing editor is not a position I ever aspired to or imagined I'd have but when I was presented with the opportunity, the challenge was too intriguing to turn away from.
And believe me, filling the shoes of James Clark is a big challenge. And it's one I know I can't tackle alone after closely watching him for the better part of a quarter century. I'm grateful for the aid of newly named Southern Standard News Editor Lisa Hobbs. I'll be leaning heavily on her 17 years of reporting experience to help me pivot a bit from strictly putting the paper together to helping generate content.
I'm also grateful for the return of the new old sports guy, Sports Editor Jeffery Simmons. His passion for sports and this community certainly shows through in the level of enthusiasm he still pours into his coverage.
I'd like to thank Publisher Patricia Zechman and General Manager Dale Stubblefield for their faith in me. I'll do my best not to let them or the readers down. And thanks to God for the way things seem to fall into place despite myself.
Finally, a little about me. I've lived in McMinnville all my life and graduated from Warren County Senior High in 1992. I'm the son of Joe and Patricia Wright. Sadly dad passed away in February. He is remembered by many for his 30-plus years as both a fourth-grade teacher at Eastside Elementary and a Kroger employee. Mom also served many years at Eastside as a substitute teacher and a teacher's assistant. But more importantly, they were and are amazing parents.
My wife is Ashley Gillentine Wright. She has her own public relations and social media business, Local Flair PR. My in-laws, Garry and Helen Gillentine, run Ashley's Attic, a store well-remembered by generations of McMinnville children which is still going strong.
So that's a brief introduction but, the good Lord willing, you'll be seeing a lot more from me on these pages.
Standard Managing Editor Seth Wright can be reached at 473-2191.