Here’s wishing the happiest of birthdays to six talented visual journalists…
Bill Baker is the owner of Bakedmedia Inc., a 3D animation and multimedia studio based in Owings, Md. A 1977 graduate of the Pensacola School of Liberal Arts, Bill spent a couple of years as a jet mechanic in the U.S. Marines before joining the News Star World of Monroe, La. He worked for the Pensacola (Fla.) News Journal, the Detroit News and then USA Today before moving to Knight-Ridder Tribune graphics in 1988. He eventually became animation director for KRT’s News-In-Motion unit, producing graphics for TV news. He founded Bakedmedia in 2002. Find his Twitter feed here. Bill turns 56 today.
Suzanne Behnke is a grad student at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, and a legislative clerk. A graduate of Wartburg College, Suzanne spent three years as a reporter and copy editor for the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier before moving to the Des Moines Register in 2000. There, she coordinated special sections and managed the copy desk. Suzanne left the Register in 2009.
Don Morris is assistant art director for the Tampa Bay Times of St. Petersburg, Fla. A 1986 graduate of the University of the Pacific in Stockton, Calif., Don joined the Times in 1988 and has worked there ever since, as a reporter, illustrator and art manager. In addition, he’s freelanced for such clients as Red Bull, Turner Broadcasting, Coca-Cola, Chick-Fil-A, Smithsonian magazine and the Wall Street Journal. Find samples of his work via his agent.
Neal Pattison is executive editor of the Everett, Wash., Daily Herald, in the northern suburbs of Seattle. A 1974 graduate of Ohio University, Neal spent four years as assistant city editor of the Arizona Republic and the Phoenix Gazette before moving to the Spokesman Review as assistant managing editor. He spent ten years in Spokane before becoming managing editor of the Albuquerque Tribune in 1992 and then assistant managing editor of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer in 1996. He served as president of the Society for News Design in 1997, spent two years as a journalist in residence at American University in D.C. and then moved to Everett in 2007. Find Neal’s Twitter feed here.
Diego Sorbara is a copy editor on the foreign copy desk of the New York Times. A graduate of the University of Missouri, Diego spent a year-and-a-half on the copy desk of the Rocky Mountain News before moving to the Times in 2008. Find his Twitter feed here.
Francie Williamson is regional news editor for the Gazette of Cedar Rapids, Iowa. A 2000 graduate of the University of Missouri, Francie spent two years as a designer for the Sun News of Myrtle Beach, S.C. and then two more years as a copy editor at the Press Herald in Portland, Maine. She moved to the Savannah (Ga.) Morning News in 2004 and then to the Quad-City Times in Davenport, Iowa in 2007, where she was page one editor. She moved up the road to Cedar Rapids in 2010 as copy desk chief and took on her current duties in 2014. Find her Twitter feed here. Francie turns 36 today.
Francie, Suzanne, Diego, Neal, Bill and Don share a birthday with actors William Bradley “Brad” Pitt, Kate Noelle “Katie” Holmes, Raiford Chatman “Ossie” Davis, Raymond Allen “Ray” Liotta and Elizabeth Ruth “Betty” Grable; musicians Keith Richards, Shawn Randolph “Randy” Houser and Christina Maria Aguilera; wrassler Steve James Anderson (better known as Stone Cold Steve Austin); sports greats Don Lee Beebe (football), Charles Oakley (basketball) and Tyrus Raymond “Ty” Cobb (baseball); former Mythbusters co-host Kari Elizabeth Byron; painter Paul Klee; South African activist Stephen Biko; Russian leader Ioseb Besarionis dze Dzhugashvili (better known as Joseph Stalin); Austrian leader Franz Ferdinand; movie critic Leonard Maltin and director Steven Allan Spielberg.
In addition, today is International Migrants Day, Underdog Day, Arabic Language Day, Answer the Telephone Like Buddy the Elf Day and National Ugly Christmas Sweater Day. Seriously.
Have a wonderful birthday, y’all! Best wishes!