Visitors, travels and goodbye to a staff member

After nearly a decade at HCN, Tammy York says goodbye.

  • After nine years with HCN, Tammy York is taking a break to spend more time outside and with family.

    Brooke Warren/High Country News

We don’t get many visitors to the office here in Paonia, Colorado, over the cold winter months, but one reader made the trek in January. Grace Woods dropped by when she passed through town on her quest to find a friendly community to settle down and enjoy the bounty of local farms and orchards. We wish you good luck on your search, Grace. 

Lately we’ve been catching up with readers and donors: In late January, Executive Director Paul Larmer went to Boulder, Utah, to visit Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, created by former President Bill Clinton in 1996. The last time he was there, in 1997, he got an earful from anti-monument locals and wrote a story about the impending shift of the local economy from ranching and timber to recreation and tourism. This time, Paul saw several longtime HCN readers, including Dave Mock, who owns the Boulder Mountain Lodge, Tom and Caroline Hoyt (Tom serves on the board of the Grand Staircase-Escalante Partners, the monument’s official support organization), and Keith Watts, owner and operator of Earth Tours. The amenity-based economy in Garfield and Kane counties strengthens every year, they say — tour buses and rental cars are now staples on State Highway 12 from March through November, and a new hotel is under construction in nearby Escalante. Yet the old resentments haven’t gone away entirely, and some people still hold grudges.

Major gifts officer Alyssa Pinkerton caught up with former intern Jacob Forman (1991), who is now a screenwriter. Alyssa and Development Director Laurie Milford also met Mary Gifford, a retired environmental scientist, who now writes and records music in Denver and is still reading HCN after three decades. Thanks, all, for your ideas and support.

On Feb. 17, we’ll be saying a heartfelt goodbye to our circulation manager, Tammy York, who has spent almost nine years here at HCN. Tammy is one of the friendly people behind the scenes handling customer service, managing subscriptions and helping organize HCN events. She says keeping up with rapid subscription growth has been a tremendous challenge, especially for digital subscriptions, as HCN’s web presence expands. On top of all that, she’s been a constant warm, smiling presence in the office, and a joy to work with. Tammy says she’ll miss the customers she has gotten to know over the years, but also can’t wait to spend her time outside the office, hiking in the fresh air. We’ll miss you so much, Tammy!

And, a correction: In a recent issue, we incorrectly identified where most jaguars live; most are found in South and Central America, not Mexico (“The Latest,” HCN, 2/6/16). In the same issue in “Malheur Revisited,” we incorrectly used an old number for the National Wildlife Refuge System’s acreage. Additions since 2014 have expanded the system to 850 million acres, up from 150 million. We regret the errors.

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