Accolades and visitors

Reporter Doug Fox wins a big award for his HCN story, ‘Dust Detectives.’


We’re delighted that the American Geophysical Union has named Doug Fox its 2015 Walter Sullivan Award Winner for his story “Dust Detectives,” which appeared in our Dec. 22 issue. The award committee praised Fox’s “excellent storytelling, compelling characters, and his choice of an important, newsworthy topic.” Way to go, Doug, and by the way, where is your next story? (Hint, hint!)

Meanwhile, former HCN Editor-in-Chief Greg Hanscom- is now editing-in-chief for Crosscut, an online independent news service covering the Pacific Northwest. Yay, Greg!

And High Country News isn’t just running for Congress; we’ve already gotten there! Thanks to generous readers who donated $5,000 — matched by a longtime supporter — each member of Congress will begin receiving a subscription in time for the fall session. Our heartfelt thanks to all who contributed.

Diane Sylvain

Summer has brought an unusual amount of rain to the North Fork Valley, nicely greening- up the mesas and bringing peaches, cherries and a bunch of visitors to our Paonia headquarters.

Dixie and Bob Jahnke drove their green 1960s Austin Healey into Paonia this June after a car rally in Glenwood Springs. They’d passed Paonia more than once and heard about HCN, but didn’t subscribe until now. Welcome to the club!

Steve, Donna and Alex Morrall of nearby Grand Junction brought their Midwestern visitors, Lynne Cruse and Marilyn Aardema,  by when they drove over Grand Mesa to show off their gorgeous backyard. Steve has subscribed since the early 1980s.

The Wolff pack — Kevin Wolff, Maureen Grady and their children, Abigail and David — dropped in while exploring the area. The Chicago-based family spent a week in town while Kevin trained at Paonia’s Solar Energy International. Though from the Midwest, they have multiple Paonia connections — visible from the parents’ Chaco-clad feet (the sandal company was founded here), to their love of HCN

Internationally recognized speaker, business expert and HCN reader Jon Schallert stopped by after presenting a workshop for locals on how to transform Paonia, a former coal-mining town with great organic fruit and produce, wine and a creative arts sector, into a successful “destination.” It turns out that Jon and his wife, Peg, have another connection to Paonia: Their son helped build our new public library.

Celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary, John and Carol Bisbee visited with their daughter, Kari O’Connell, who is from Corvallis, Oregon. John, a retired college biology professor, and Kari, who works for the forestry extension at Oregon State University, are longtime subscribers. The group then planned to camp out at nearby Lost Lake. 

Faithful readers Paul Jakus and his wife, Flora Shrode, stopped by for a quick respite from the heat and their bike ride. Paul is a professor at Utah State University and associate director of the Center for Society, Economy and the Environment. During their off-time, the couple travel the country to see the band Phish. This was their first expedition to Paonia. 

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