I was in diapers the first time my mom and dad moved to St. Louis, in Dogtown. My dad had just graduated from Purdue University. He soon found sales work with Diebold, a bank equipment company, and we moved from St. Louis to Chicago, Cincinnati, Oklahoma City, then back to Ohio, as he was transferred for his job.
Those days were filled with the usual suburban kid stuff: tree-climbing, backyard football, Boy Scouts. I was a high school swimmer in Canton, OH, at Glenwood High School, the alma mater of the football Cardinals' Dan Dierdorf.
I followed an industrial design career path, after graduating with that degree from Michigan State University in 1980, but had the itch to get into journalism, so I freelanced for a weekly in Exeter, NH, while designing athletic shoes for Nike.
I ended up back in St. Louis for good in 1985, and soon started working two part-time jobs simultaneously for the Suburban Journals and the Daily Record as a photographer, then full time for the Journals. I went freelance in the early '90s, stringing for the Associated Press, Agence France Presse, a local stock photo agency, and various public relations firms, as well as shooting the occasional wedding.
In 1996, when I was married and living in Glendale, my wife, Nancy, and I adopted two little boys from St. Petersburg, Russia. A switch from freelance to full time made financial sense, so I resurrected my industrial design career and got a job with Emerson Electric designing ceiling fans and power tools.
I made my final move back to journalism/photography, and started with the Principia School, in Town and Country, as a writer/photographer in 2002. That job began mostly in print and migrated mostly to the web by the time I was laid off in 2009, in the heart of the recession.
Back to freelance. I became the go-to guy for sports, following MRH football all the way to the , and became a pretty big Blue Devils fan in the process.
Patch editors from Creve Coeur, Kirkwood, Webster Groves, Ladue-Frontenac, Maryland Heights and Clayton-Richmond Heights gave me assignments during that time as well. When a full-time Patch position opened up, as associate local editor, I was pretty psyched, and, of course, thrilled when I got the position.
I don’t have responsibility for a single Patch. I’ll be filling in for the south-of-Highway-40 Patch editors when they need a break, and at times writing for them.
I’m also going to be covering the roads/highways construction beat, keeping you updated on the projects in your area. How cool is that? I mean, who wouldn’t love being told to put on a hard hat, visit construction sites, and talk to engineers about concrete, asphalt and big earth movers?
What a great job.
Doug Miner started with Patch in September 2010 as a freelancer collecting business listings and has worked mostly for Maplewood-Brentwood Patch as a freelance reporter since then. Late last month, he joined Patch full time as an associate local editor in St. Louis.