I arrived in the Wood River Valley in August 2006. Everything I owned fit in the back of my pickup. I was in search of adventure and excited to start a new job working as a journalist for the Wood River Journal.
A lot has changed since then. I met and married my husband. My career path shifted as I stopped working as a reporter and became director of outreach and communication for Citizens for Smart Growth. I could go on and on, but that's probably enough.
Now, another change is afoot. I am moving closer to my family in the southeast, where I will return to journalism and work as a reporter for The Chattanooga Times Free Press, a large daily paper serving the greater metropolitan area of Chattanooga, Tenn.
As I prepare to leave this valley, I question whether I will ever find a community as welcoming. Anywhere I go in the future will have a lot to live up to. I've really enjoyed living, working and playing in Blaine County over the past three years. I sincerely hope life leads me back to this paradise in the mountains one day.
I just wanted to say thanks to all of you I've come to know and work with in these few years and wish you the best of luck in all that is to come. When I first moved here I didn't know a single person in Idaho. Since that day, I've made a lot of great friends and learned many things from wonderful people. My life is forever changed by this experience.
Also, to my friends at Smart Growth—continue fighting the good fight. This organization is an important voice, working hard to ensure a sustainable future for our beloved mountain towns.