(Please take that header in jest ... )
When I came up with the concept for the Our Neighbors feature, the goal was simple: For the local community newspaper to shine the spotlight on locals who were worthy of being covered in the news even though they may not necessarily do something typically considered "newsworthy."
Since its inception, the front page, weekend staple has featured plenty of local newsmakers (in their own rights), and even won some awards (first place at the New England Associated Press News Executive Association for feature writing in 2011).
This past week, I almost feel compelled to craft a new column about folks who left the area but are still doing incredible things. There was a one-time local firefighter recently announced as Fire Chief for the Portland (Maine) Fire Department; a Brattleboro Union High School graduate honored at a Palm Beach food event for cuisine crafted in his restaurant on wheels; and a one-time local woman studying abroad when she was involved in a traffic accident (and was temporarily places in a medically induced coma!).
It's hard to track all of these types of stories down, but they're still just as interesting to readers as the regular Our Neighbors features. So, while we probably won't dedicate a permanent spot to these one-time locals, we'll still make a point to report on as many as we can.
Update: After calling the editor at the Palm Beach newspaper, I was able to get a release to run their coverage of the food event, crediting their publication and writer, in a future edition of the Reformer.