Zach Spicer: It’s time to write a new story in life


My last story is written. My computer is turned off. My desk is empty.

After nearly 17 years, I have completed my time as a reporter for The Tribune. On Monday, I started as workforce partnership coordinator and social media for Jackson County Industrial Development Corp. I will still be in Seymour and still be around the community, for which I’m thankful.

After graduating from Austin High School in 2001, journalism became the only thing I wanted to do, and I am so glad I later went to a journalism job fair at Franklin College and met Dan Davis, editor of The Tribune. He gave me an opportunity to freelance as a sports writer.

I covered high school basketball games starting in February 2007. My first story was covering the Brownstown Central vs. Clarksville boys basketball game. I met interim sports editor Aubrey Woods, who took pictures at the game. Afterwards, I met him back at the office to type my story on the computer.

The other games I covered, I was still living at home and went to my parents’ house and figured up my statistics, typed up my story and emailed it to Aubrey. I remember going up to a gas station in Crothersville to buy a copy of the paper to keep when I knew my story would be in.

Then in May that year, an opening came up for a reporter in the newsroom. I started full time May 20, 2007. Two days later, I had my first centerpiece story, which was about West Nile virus.

In December 2008, our sports editor retired, and I took on that role. My first assignment was covering the Brownstown Central High School volleyball awards program.

Over the next seven years, I had an opportunity to cover all five county high schools, including basketball, gymnastics, swimming and diving, wrestling, track and field, baseball, softball, tennis, golf, football, volleyball, cross country and soccer. Plus, there were bowling and archery events.

Several of the sports I wasn’t familiar with because they didn’t have them at my high school, so that was a good learning experience. I grew to love them all.

Looking back on that experience, I covered Brownstown going to state in both boys and girls basketball, Seymour’s Kameron Chastain winning breaststroke in the swimming state finals and multiple athletes going to state in track and field and gymnastics. Plus, there were other individuals and teams having success at a variety of levels. I also looked beyond high school sports and followed people on the collegiate and professional levels.

Looking back, wow! What awesome stories I got to cover, what awesome places I got to go to and what outstanding people I met along the way.

Then in September 2014, Dan left and Aubrey moved into the editor role, leaving the door open for me to return to news.

Again, wow! All of the stories I got to tell, people I met, places I got to go and things I got to experience.

But as many of you know, a lot of things have changed in these years I’ve been in journalism, particularly since September 2023 when we went from printing six days a week to two. I adjusted to it, and I just hope the paper continues to be printed. We all need a community paper. They are vital to everyone.

Even in my new job, I will continue to support and promote The Tribune. I hope you do, too. I told Aubrey I’d be happy to help when I can or if needed. Also, I’ll continue to ensure Special Olympics Indiana Jackson County gets coverage in the paper since I’ll still be a volunteer with that awesome organization doing public relations. I also will continue serving on the Anchor House board.

I have to thank my family for supporting my decision and helping me talk through things. My mom, Jeannie Atkins, has always been my rock. My brother, Josh Spicer, is one of my best friends and is always there for me, too. Plus, my niece, Kaylie Spicer, is awesome and always is great to talk to. I am so fortunate to have them in my life.

I want to thank my awesome coworkers at The Tribune over the years. They are the reason I stayed as long as I did. You couldn’t ask for a better group of people. It was so nice of them to put together a taco bar, decorate my desk with balloons, give me gifts and share their heartfelt thoughts. I didn’t expect anything because I don’t like being in the spotlight, but that’s just an example of the type of people they are. Thanks to all current and past coworkers who joined us for lunch.

I owe a huge thanks to Dan for giving me a job in the journalism field and for being an awesome boss, and the same goes to Aubrey for his leadership.

I also need to thank everyone who has allowed and trusted me to share their story. I have always considered that a true honor. I hope to get the opportunity to do that every once in awhile.

Also, thanks to Jim Plump and Jackie Hill with JCIDC for giving me an opportunity and choosing me for this position. I am familiar with what the organization does since I’ve covered events over the years, so that helps going into a new role. I’m glad I still have an opportunity to interact and be part of the community.

On Monday, I started my new story in life, turned on my computer, filled my desk and got to work.

Zach Spicer was a reporter for The Tribune for nearly 17 years. He recently took a job with Jackson County Industrial Development Corp. Send comments to [email protected].

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