Archives for July 2012

Longtime journalist, public official Swisher dies at 88

Joseph "Perry" Swisher died June 6, 2012 at his residence in Boise at the age of 88.

Perry was born Sept. 21, 1923 in Bruneau, Idaho, the son of James Joyce and Maymee (Blakeslee) Swisher. He graduated Pocatello H.S. in 1941, and received a Certificate in Arts in 1943 from University of Idaho Southern Branch, Pocatello; and B.A. from Idaho State University in 1968. His residences in Idaho included: Blackfoot, Idaho (childhood): Pocatello, Idaho (1930s to 1976); Lewiston, Idaho (1976-1979); and Boise (1979-death).

Perry … [Read more...]

Longtime reporter Pat McCoy dies of cancer at 65

Note: This obituary first appeared in the Idaho Statesman on June 5.

Patricia Rae McCoy Rohleder, 65, peacefully died in her sleep on Friday, June 1, 2012 of complications due to cancer.

Pat was born June 3, 1946, in Boise, to Stanley Eugene and Edna L. Chaffin McCoy. She was the fourth of six children.

As a cleft palate baby, she became acquainted with many doctors and nurses throughout her life. One vivid memory was how excited the family became when she learned to whistle at age 7, something the doctors … [Read more...]

President’s Column: Hunt through records reveals Idaho reporting history

By Betsy Russell

I was puzzled when I saw the arguments that the state filed on May 30 in our court case over media access to Idaho executions, suggesting that unlike California - where a 9th Circuit decision in 2002 ordered executions opened to witnesses in their entirety - a review of Idaho's laws showed no history of media witnesses observing executions.

The state suggested in court documents that because an 1899 Idaho law moved executions to the state level - they'd previously been done at the county level, and … [Read more...]

News media witnesses: A longstanding tradition at Idaho executions

By Betsy Z. Russell

BOISE - As Idaho’s news media sparred with the state in federal court this spring over limits on access to executions, the case turned a spotlight on Idaho’s long and consistent history of media witnesses attending its state executions to serve as the eyes and ears of the public.

Media witnesses have been present for all but one Idaho execution since 1901 and published detailed accounts of them. That's what history shows, and it counters arguments the state presented in federal court, claiming … [Read more...]

10 Steps to Maybe Getting Your Nonfiction Book Published

By Nathaniel Hoffman

A generation ago we learned that the medium is the message. We segregated ourselves into media categories: TV people or radio people or print people, and we perfected our medium with inverted pyramids and driveway moments and close-up, highly emotional footage.

And then, in the late '90s, Google or Al Gore invented the internet and the media blew up again, mashing together our disciplines and ruining our attention spans. Some of us took to blogging, learned video and audio editing and survived. I dropped … [Read more...]