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Another year has passed and it’s time for reflection. The Sacramento Press has been lucky to form new relationships with some very talented contributing writers and photographers while strengthening our relationships with contributors who have been with us all along.
Our region had many notable events that will forever ingrain 2011 in Sacramentans’ minds.
When the “99 percent” occupied Cesar Chavez park and when Gus Vina left his post as City Manager, our community contributors were there to report. When the first cars inched their way down K Street and when the Sacramento City School Board considered relocating campuses, our community contributors were ready with notepads and cameras.
Our community contributors live and breathe the issues that impact our region and are truly the essence of The Sacramento Press.
This year, we reached a milestone that we are very proud of. In September, the 10,000th article was posted on our site. It would not be possible to reach that accomplishment if it weren’t for our dedicated community contributors.
Earlier in the year, some of our best contributors were recognized in short videos.
As one more small token of appreciation, we have put together digital showcases of articles and photographs posted by our Top Contributors.
Below are the community contributors who have gone above and beyond, working closely with us and submitting high-quality content that we are proud to recognize.
We hope you’ll take a moment to see what they have accomplished throughout the year! Click on the names below to see individual splash pages.
Aaron Davis played a significant role in helping us reach 10,000 articles this year. Aaron briefly worked in the Community Outreach department, supporting our contributors while continuing to contribute himself. He is a man of many talents, writing about everything from Osama Bin Laden’s death and the infamous Kings relocation debacle (yes, in the same article) to playing April Fool’s jokes on our readers. We can’t wait to see what he will write about next.
Alejandra Gonzalez is a woman about town who has embraced the essence of Sacramento. This
year she captured everything from wine-swirling at Grape Escape to tutu-twirling of the Sacramento Ballet. Whether it’s tea parties, fundraisers or concerts, Alejandra is our go-to gal for all things culture.
Amabelle Ocampo delves deep into important issues affecting our region, such as the Occupy movement. She isn’t afraid to explore delicate subjects like foster care or cancer and manages to write about them eloquently.
She balanced the seriousness by perfectly capturing the playful spirit of events like Wanderlust and Fashion’s Night Out.
Barry Wisdom has an eye for theater photography, which is almost guaranteed to come with a list of shooting restrictions. However, given a few minutes or only a dress rehearsal to work with, Barry always manages to capture the heart and emotion of every performances, putting the viewer right in the moment. His photo essays tell stories better than any article can.
Bill Burgua has truly honed his skills as a theater reviewer this year, and his passion for theater is simply contagious. He has a standing invitation to review performances at the many theaters he frequents, where we are proud to send him on our behalf. His reviews are often
boasted proudly on theaters’ websites.
David Alvarez’ talents run the gamut. Whether it’s a somber parade honoring our soldiers, a lively cultural festival or sporting event, David knows how to capture the perfect shot to convey the energy of the moments he shoots. He often serves as both the writer and photographer at the events he covers, which can be a difficult feat, but he manages to do it well.
Elaine Johnson’s feisty MidLife GridLife article series has given us an exclusive and intimate peek into her personal life. This year her readers have been privy to her first date mishaps, her relationship highs and lows and her thoughts on being called a “cougar.” We never know if we’ll laugh or cry while reading Elaine’s work and are always left wanting more.
It is almost impossible to describe the enthusiasm Kati Garner has for photography with just a couple of sentences. Her passion for the subjects she shoots run deeps and her photos speak to our readers. She kicked off the year with a stunning image of the Wells Fargo Center and ended it by lighting up our site with images of local holiday displays. In between, she treated us to the shots of the zoo and Fairytale Town’s newest critters, moving tributes on 9/11 and frame-worthy images of local scenery. Kati is unstoppable!
Much to our delight, Mary Nares has become our go-to writer if there is a choral performance in town; we know we can count on her. She often teams up with Kati Garner to review choral performances and together they make a dynamic duo. A member of a local choir herself, Mary has been welcomed with open arms to local groups’ performances who enjoy her writing as much as we do.
Mark Needham is an expert on all things black and purple. His devotion to the Kings is infectious, and we know we can always rely on Mark to go where the action is happening. This year, he took that enthusiasm to Raley Field, where we proved to be an equally fantastic River Cats writer. We’re grateful that he has chosen The Sacramento Press to express his enthusiasm for local sports.
If you’ve ever driven by the scene of a crime or an accident and wondered what’s happening, it’s almost guaranteed that the Maverick Photography team, made up of Ed Fogle and his team of photographers can tell you. The talented team live and breathe breaking news and are always at the forefront of the action. The Maverick team has filled an important gap on our site.
Patricia Willers’ passion for two topics became apparent this year: She loves beer and music. She reviewed notable concerts like Cake and American Idol Live! and sipped brews at Oktoberfest and the California Brewers Festival. This year, we were lucky enough to have Patricia become a copy editor for our community contributors. Her talents have helped developed the skills of our contributors’ and we’re happy to have her as part of our team.
Randy Miramontez was on fire covering big-name acts this year. While photography is his area of expertise, he collaborated with himself (writing and shooting) on close to 20 concerts at Thunder Valley Casino and Resort and a
handful of others at Power Balance Pavilion. Despite his packed concert schedule, Randy somehow finds the time to operate a local blog, Sac and Beyond (http://sacandbeyond.com/). He has grown his impressive portfolio immensely as both a writer and photog since we first met him.
Rik Keller's photos are a treat for the eyes. He has a knack for turning ordinary shots into exquisite pieces of art that make you stop and stare. Whether it’s a mobile food truck festival or a subdued protest rally, Rik has a knack for finding the beauty in every scene. He has given us a whole new appreciation for local surroundings.
Ron Nabity started out the year by impressing us with his drool-worthy shots of Dine Downtown menu items. Ron spent the rest of 2011 exciting us with his action shots of our local sports teams, the Capital Airshow and the Amgen Tour of California. He conveys the exhilaration of the moments he captures through his still shots, putting our readers right at the sidelines with him.
Rorie Oliver built an impressive archive of articles this year, covering everything from the legendary Beach Boys at Thunder Valley Casino and Resort to the community events like Picnic Day and the Sacramento International Gay & Lesbian Film Festival. Rorie gives every story, no mater how small or large, the same amount of dedication and enthusiasm.
Sandy Thomas is new to our pool of Top Contributors and we are lucky that she found us. She often collaborates with writer Trina Drotar and the pair have proved to be a very gifted duo. Together they have tackled powerful stories like poetry readings and a holiday blues concert fundraiser benefiting children in need.
To say Steven Chea’s photos are stunning is an understatement and, in fact, it might be impossible to find an adjective that appropriately describes his work. While he produces top-notch photos every time, his concert photos are the true gems in his portfolio. Steven is on his way up to big things in the photography world.
Trina Drotar’s words have helped delivered the impactful messages of the local poets and artists she has covered. While writing is not her full-time job, she gives every story her all as if it were. We are looking forward to seeing what the pair will collaborate on next year.
Last but certainly not least, we can’t forget about our weekly columnists. They have continued to educate us and give us something to look forward to on a weekly basis.
The “Pet of the Week” series, written by the Sacramento SPCA’s Julianne Byer, has helped place the local animals featured in loving homes.
“Real Relationships” is an article series dreamt up by contributor Janna Haynes, has helped solve readers’ relationship dilemmas and has weighed in on important issues many are dealing with but are hesitant to talk about.
The Sacramento Public Law Library’s weekly article series, “Ask the Law Librarian”, has proven to be a valuable resource for readers facing legal dilemmas.
Officer Michelle Lazark has put a friendly and welcoming face to law enforcement, inviting readers to ask her questions in her weekly “Ask Officer Michelle” series.
We would also like to give a shoutout to Ann Freeman Clement. It didn’t make sense to lay out a page with events that already passed, but we want to thank you for never missing a week of posting your thorough local guide to all things music.
Thanks to every single contributor who has posted an article in 2011. You are the very foundation of The Sacramento Press, and we can’t thank you enough for all that you do.
Happy new year to everyone from all of us at The Sacramento Press!