What L’OBSERVATEUR means to me
Published 8:39 am Wednesday, October 11, 2023
September 20, 2023 was my first day working at L’OBSERVATEUR as the sole News Editor on staff, which means I am now approaching the one-month mark of my time here.
L’OBSERVATEUR holds a special place in my heart. For those of you who have been long-time readers of this paper, you know that my mother, Lori Lyons, worked here as a reporter from 2015 to 2017 and covered high school sports in the River Parishes for far longer than that.
I’m reminded of that every time I meet with someone for the first time, building my contacts, and they ask me, “Are you Lori Lyons’ daughter? Marty Luquet’s daughter?” Yes, that’s me.
The River Parishes have a lot of love for my parents. I hope that as I start my career here at 116 Newspaper Drive, the people in this community learn to appreciate me even half as much.
I also held a short summer internship at L’OBSERVATEUR during the summer between my junior and senior year as a student at Northwestern State University of Louisiana. At the time, I was trying to prepare myself to be the Editor-in-Chief of The Current Sauce, the university newspaper. I had just been elected, and I was terrified out of my mind to begin my term.
Christine Browning, the then-general manager of L’OBSERVATEUR, played a vital role in preparing me for what was to come.
During my summer here, I thought I would just be writing articles and trying to log internship hours. Instead, Christine went out of her way to teach me about things I knew little about: the importance of social media, analytics, what in the world a “dummy” is in newspaper-speak, to name a few.
Christine and Brooke Cantrelle, whose position I have filled, met me with kindness, but they also knew where I came from. They helped me, but they did not baby me through my internship. They knew I was following the footsteps of my journalist mother (apart from the sports part, which I have yet to fully grasp) and trusted that I was at least a little bit worth my salt.
During my time as Editor-in-Chief of my school paper, I also learned that one of my journalism professors, Pulitzer Prize winner Jim Mustian of the Associated Press, also worked at L’OBSERVATEUR in 2008. Small world.
Needless to say, I have been blessed to learn about journalism from some of the kindest and most talented people I have ever met, and I am over the moon about being your News Editor. I grew up in the River Parishes. I know the people here and I genuinely believe their voices deserve to be heard.
If you want to come talk to me, I encourage you to do so. I am always open to story ideas, news tips, suggestions or just an opportunity to meet some of the people I have yet to write about. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org, and you can find other ways to reach me on the “About Us” page on our website.
I have received a very warm welcome from the people I have met during the past month, and I can’t wait to meet the rest of you.