Birthdays for Saturday, May 30

Here’s wishing the happiest of birthdays to six brilliant visual journalists…


Deepa Bharath is a reporter for the Orange County Register. She’s a product of the University of Madras in Chennai, India. Find her story archive here and her Twitter feed here.


Benjamin Brink has been a staff photographer for the Oregonian of Portland, Ore., for 24 years. He’s a 1977 graduate of Ohio University. Find his pictures here and his Twitter feed here.


Anisha Frizzell is a reporter for the Associated Press. Previously, she worked for the Austin, Texas, Statesman Journal and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. She’s a 1992 graduate of Northwestern University.


Jeff Goertzen is art director of the Orange County Register. A 1986 graduate of California State University in Fresno, Jeff has worked at the Register, the Detroit Free Press, Madrid’s el Mundo and el Periódico in Barcelona. He spent several years as a senior artist and graphics reporter for the St. Petersburg Times before joining the the Denver Post in 2005 as graphics editor. He worked briefly as graphics director of USA Today before rejoining the Register in 2012 as a senior artist and in-house graphics consultant. Since then, I’ve written about his work here and here. Jeff was promoted to graphics editor in 2014. He’s also worked extensively as a consultant and instructor in Colombia, Costa Rica, Brazil, Panama and China and has been active in the Society for News Design and IFRA. Find his web site here and his Twitter feed here. Jeff turns 54 today.


Darren Smith is publisher at Brooke Pattrick Publications, a business-to-business media company and director of SmartR Media, a new media and web consultancy in Johannesburg, South Africa. A 1987 graduate of the University of Natal in Pietermaritzburg, Darren earned a master’s degree from that same institution before starting work as a sales engineer. He spent a couple of years as a marketing manager and then 14 years as managing director of Technews Publishing. He went freelance in 2009 as a photographer and then added new media and marketing consulting to his services in 2010. Find his web site here and his Twitter feed here.


Kimberly Worner is editor of the Galveston County (Texas) Daily News. Kimberly spent two years as a reporter for the Daily Globe of Dodge City, Kan. After a brief time at the Clovis (N.M.) News Journal and the Garden City (Kan.) Telegram, Kimberly moved to the Tyler (Texas) Morning Telegraph in 2001 as news editor. She spent a year as lead page designer for the Bradenton (Fla.) Herald before moving to the Salt Lake Tribune in 2008 as print director. In 2012, Kimberly was named presentation manager for Advance’s Alabama Media Group in Birmingham, Ala. She moved back to Texas in March. Find her Twitter feed here.

Kimberly, Anisha, Benjamin, Deepa, Darren and Jeff share a birthday with actors Melvin Jerome Blank (better known as Mel Blanc), Keir Dullea, Colm J. Meaney, Michael John Pollack Jr. (better known as Michael J. Pollard) and Meredith Lynn MacRae; musicians Christina Claire Ciminella (better known as Wynonna Judd), Thomas DeCarlo Callaway (better known as Cee Lo Green of Gnarls Barkley), Thomas Baptiste “Tom” Morello (of Rage Against the Machine) and Benjamin David “Benny” Goodman; filmmaker Irving Grant Thalberg; TV producer Michael Piller; sports greats Steven George Gerrard (soccer), Manuel Aristides “Manny” Ramírez Onelcida (baseball), Gale Eugene Sayers (football), Clint Bowyer (auto racing) and William John “Billy” Donovan (basketball coach); cosmonaut Alexey Arkhipovich Leonov and comic book creator Kevin Brooks Eastman.

In addition, today is Mint Julep Day, Loomis Day and the Wicket World of Croquet Day. Seriously.

Have a wonderful birthday, y’all! Best wishes!

Birthdays for Friday, May 29

Here’s wishing the happiest of birthdays to seven excellent visual journalists…


Geoffrey Bowman is a “newspaper producer” for the E.W. Scripps newspaper production hub in Corpus Christi, Texas.


Tina Croley is managing editor for content for Stars and Stripes and based in Washington, D.C. A 1982 graduate of Transylvania University in Lexington, Ky., Tina spent 17 years at the Herald Leader, starting out as an office clerk, then as a copy editor, a fashion writer, a shopping columnist and then assistant lifestyles editor. She moved to the Detroit Free Press in 1995 as assistant features editor and was promoted to features editor in 1995. She left the Freep in 2009 after 14 years there and joined Stars and Stripes in 2010 as enterprise editor. she moved into her current position last fall. Find her Twitter feed here. Tina turns 55 today.


Dave Elbert is a columnist for the Des Moines Business Record and a writer and editor for Iowa Business 365. He stepped down in 2012 after 36-and-a-half years of reporting, business editing and writing a column for the Des Moines Register. Dave turns 68 today.


Claire Innes is art director of Chicago Parent magazine plus four suburban weekly newspapers and based in Oak Park, Ill. A 1983 graduate of the University of Michigan, Claire worked as an artist at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and a features designer and art director for the Detroit Free Press before moving to the Chicago Tribune in 1995 as an art director for the Trib‘s Travel and Q sections. She spent four years as creative director of the Post-Tribune in Merrillville, Ind. Find her portfolio here and her Twitter feed here.


Joey Kirk is lead designer for High Gear Media of Palo Alto, Calif., and a curriculum developer for Bloc, Inc., of San Francisco. Both are developers of web, mobile and tablet platforms. The owner of bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Texas Tech, Joey spent some of his college years working as a reporter for the Wylie News. His final year, he was editor-in-chief of the Texas Tech student paper, the Daily Toreador. Joey served a summer fellowship at the Poynter Institute and then spent more than two years as a sports designer with the Arizona Republic before moving to the user experience team at Tribune Interactive in Chicago, Ill., in 2009. He was promoted to lead designer in 2011 but then started work for High Gear in 2012. In addition, Joey was CEO and creative director of 5M Sports, a branding firm that specializes in athletes and sports organizations. Find his personal web site here. His wife, Chelsea, is a political reporter for the Courier and Press of Evansville, Ind. Find his personal web site here and his Twitter feed here. Joey turns 31 today.


For the past 15 years, Katie Kunert has been a graphics reporter and artist for the Des Moines Register. I hired her myself, out of tiny Grand View College in Des Moines, Iowa, where she had been layout editor of the weekly college tab. Those of you who have seen my slideshows have seen samples of Katie’s work. Since I left the Register in 2003, Katie got married, changed her name and became a mom. For a long time, she ran MomsLikeMe, a web site for Des Moines-area mothers. Find Katie’s Twitter feed here.


Joshua Smothers is a designer for the Gannett Design Studio in Des Moines, Iowa. A graduate of Wartburg College in Waverly, Iowa, Josh went to work for the Des Moines Register in 2004 as a page designer and copy editor who concentrated mostly on sports. He folded over into the studio in 2011. Find his portfolio here and his Twitter feed here. Joshua turns 34 today.

Joey, Joshua, Katie, Claire, Geoffrey, Tina and Dave share a birthday with actors Annette Carol Bening, Anthony Geary, Frank Theodore “Ted” Levine, Lisa Diane Whelchel, Adrian Paul Hewett (better known as Adrian Paul) and Leslie Townes “Bob” Hope; musicians Melissa Lou Etheridge, La Toya Yvonne Jackson, Daniel Robert “Danny” Elfman, Melanie Janine Brown (better known as Scary Spice of the Spice Girls) and Noel Thomas David Gallagher (of Oasis); sports greats Alfred “Al” Unser Sr., Kenneth “Ken” Schrader (both auto racing), Steve Mason (hockey) and Eric Keith Davis (baseball); authors Gilbert Keith “G.K.” Chesterton and Frederick Schiller Faust (better known as Max Brand); physicist Peter Ware Higgs; cartoonist Aaron McGruder; founding father Patrick Henry; attempted presidential assassin John Warnock Hinckley Jr. and president John Fitzgerald Kennedy.

In addition, today is Learn About Composting Day, International Day of UN Peacekeepers, Put a Pillow on your Fridge Day, Bats Day and Hug Your Cat Day. Seriously.

Best wishes for a wonderful birthday, folks!

Birthdays for Thursday, May 28

Here’s wishing the happiest of birthdays to three superlative visual journalists…


Nick Feely is associate managing editor for sports at the Villages Daily Sun in central Florida. A 2007 graduate of the State University of New York college at Geneseo, Nick interned at Bleacher Report and at the Trentonian of Trenton, N.J., while earning a master’s degree from Syracuse University. He started work at the Villages in November 2010 as a copy editor, designer, and baseball and college hoops columnist. He was promoted to his current position in 2013. Find Nick’s Twitter feed here.


Joshua Gillin is a reporter for PolitiFact Florida and the Tampa Bay Times of St. Petersburg, Fla. A 1998 graduate of the University of Nebraska, Josh spent a year as a copy editor at the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review and three-and-a-half years as a news planner and designer for the Savannah Morning News before moving to the Philadelphia Inquirer in 2002. He designed page one, served as editor of the Inky‘s Weekend magazine and was presentation editor of sports. In 2006, he moved to TBT — the youth-oriented tabloid of the then-St. Petersburg Times — as a columnist, designer, and web editor. He moved to his current position in 2013. Find his PolitiFact work here, his blogging work for the Poynter Institute here, his personal blog here and his Twitter feed here. Joshua turns 39 today.


Ian Lawson is lead sports designer for the World-Herald of Omaha, Neb. He spent three yeas as an editor and designer for the Ledger Independent of Maysville, Ky., before moving to the Gannett design studio in Louisville, Ky. in December 2011. He moved to Omaha in 2013. Find his portfolio here. Ian turns 35 today.

Ian, Joshua and Nick share a birthday with actors Jesse Bradford Watrouse (who normally goes only by his first two names), Cameron Boyce and Joseph Michael Cross; musicians John Cameron Fogerty, Kylie Ann Minogue, Gladys Maria Knight and Wendy Orlean Williams; TV host Elisabeth DelPadre Filarski (better known as Elisabeth Hasselbeck); sports greats Jacobus Franciscus “Jim” Thorpe, William Percival “Percy” Harvin III, Michael Jerome Oher (all three football), Jerry Alan West and Glen Anthony Rice (both basketball) and Ben Howland (basketball coach); funny doctor Hunter Doherty “Patch” Adams; authors Walker Percy and Ian Lancaster Fleming; politicians Rudolph William Louis “Rudy” Giuliani, Marco Antonio Rubio and Marshall Clement “Mark” Sanford Jr. and cartoonist Lynn Johnston.

In addition, today is Sierra Club Day. Seriously.

Best wishes, you three! Have a wonderful birthday!

Birthdays for Wednesday, May 27

Here’s wishing the happiest of birthdays to three terrifically talented visual journalists…


John T. Garcia is an editor and writer currently seeking work in the Los Angeles area. A 1989 graduate of California Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks, Calif. — maybe five or six miles east of Camarillo — John spent nearly six years as assistant business editor and then two-and-a-half years as a designer and copy editor for the Ventura County Star in Camarillo, Calif. In 2006, he was named the Star‘s coordinator of niche publications. He left the star in October. Find his Twitter feed here. John turns 48 today.


Mauricio Gutierrez is design director for the Detroit Free Press. A 1993 graduate of the Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores in Monterrey, Mexico, Mauricio spent five years at Monterrey’s el Norte newspaper, three years at Roger Black Studios and then two years with the Orange Country Register before joining the Freep in 2000 as features design director. He was promoted to his current position in 2009.


Sam Twarek is associate art director for Cleveland magazine. A 2010 graduate of Kent State University, Sam worked as a photographer for the student paper there, the Daily Kent Stater, as well as for several on-campus magazines. He interned for Cleveland magazine in 2009 and briefly served as design editor for the Chautauquan Daily before moving to Gastonia, N.C. — just west of Charlotte — to become a designer and copy editor for the Gaston Gazette in September 2010. He moved downtown a year later to become a designer for McClatchy’s editing center in Charlotte. He moved again to Cleveland in 2012. Find his Twitter feed here.

Sam, Mauricio and John share a birthday with actors Christopher Paul Colfer, Vincent Leonard Price Jr., Christopher Frank Carandini Lee, Lee Ann Meriwether, Bruce Peter Weitz, Richard Schiff, Peri Kay Oldham (better known as Peri Gilpin), Joseph Alberic Iscariot Twisleton-Wykeham-Fiennes (better known as Joseph Fiennes), Vanessa Blue, Ash Hollywood, Todd Anthony Bridges and Louis Cameron Gossett Jr.; musicians André Lauren Benjamin (better known as André 3000), Lisa Nicole “Left Eye” Lopes, Ramsey Emmanuel Lewis Jr., Bruce Douglas Cockburn and Susan Janet Ballion (better known as Siouxie Sioux of Siouxie and the Banshees); sports greats Samuel Jackson Snead (golf), Jeffrey Robert Bagwell, Frank Edward Thomas Jr. (both baseball) and Jeremy Allen Mayfield (auto racing); TV and radio host Adam Carolla; politicians Hubert Horatio Humphrey Jr., Christopher John “Chris” Dodd and Henry Alfred Kissinger; wild West legend James Butler “Wild Bill” Hickok, authors Herman Wouk, Samuel Dashiell Hammett and Harlan Jay Ellison and former British tabloid editor Rebekah Mary Wade Brooks.

In addition, today is National Senior Health and Fitness Day, World Multiple Sclerosis Day and Cellophane Tape Day. Seriously.

Have a truly great birthday, you three! Best wishes!

Birthdays for Tuesday, May 26

Here’s wishing the happiest of birthdays to three talented visual journalists…


Andy Bechtel is a professor at the University of North Carolina, where he teaches editing, writing and alternative story forms. A 1989 graduate of the University of South Carolina, Andy earned a master’s degree from UNC in 1993 and then spent five years as a copy editor with the News & Observer of Raleigh, N.C. He moved to Baton Rouge to teach journalism for three years at Louisiana State University but then returned to the N&O in 2001 to lead the paper’s wire desk. Andy became a full-time teacher in 2005. Find his blog — which focuses on editing for print and online — here and his Twitter feed here. Andy turns 48 today.


Doug Jessmer is a graphic designer for the Tampa Metro YMCA and for the YMCA of the Suncoast in Clearwater, Fla. A 1994 graduate of Marietta College, Doug spent four years with the Alliance (Ohio) Review and then another four at the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review before moving to the Sarasota Herald-Tribune in 2005 as a page designer. He joined the Detroit (Mich.) News but then returned to Florida in 2007. Since then, he’s spent time with the Pinellas News — a weekly in St. Petersburg — the Tampa Bay Times of St. Petersburg — and the Daily Sun of the Villages, Fla. He started at the Y a year ago. In addition, Doug is the national marketing and public affairs officer for the Civil Air Patrol, in which he’s a lieutenant colonel. Doug turns 43 today.


Olivier Bourgeois is managing editor of the Southwest European profit center of WAN-IFRA in Lyon, France. A 1990 graduate of the National Engineering School of Saint-Étienne, Oliver spent three years as IT and technical director of the Info Regie group of newspapers and then four years as project manager of Progress, another regional newspaper group. He joined WAN-IFRA in 2004. Find his Twitter feed here.

Bourgeois, Doug and Andy share a birthday with actors Helena Bonham Carter, Peter Wilton Cushing, Roy Dotrice, Philip Michael Thomas, Pamela Suzette “Pam” Grier, Harold J. Smith (better known as Jay Silverheels), James King Arness and Marion Robert Morrison (better known as John Wayne); musicians Randall Hank Williams (better known as Hank Williams Jr.), Stephanie Lynn “Stevie” Nicks, Miles Dewey Davis III, Leonard Albert “Lenny” Kravitz, Norma Deloris Egstrom (better known as Peggy Lee) and Asa Yoelson (better known as Al Jolson); comedian Robert Francis “Bobcat” Goldthwait; sports greats Zola Budd (track and field), Wesley Darcel Walker (football), Darrell Wayne Evans (baseball) and Brent Woody Musburger (announcer); astronaut Sally Kristen Ride; animator Matthew Richard “Matt” Stone; counter-spy Aldrich Hazen Ames and photographer Dorothea Lange.

In addition, today is World Lindy Hop Day. Seriously.

Best wishes, you three! Have a terrific birthday!