As a professional journalist with five years of experience, I've written more than a thousand stories covering a range of fields including city hall, schools, higher education, cops, courts, the Census and more.

The stories ranged from breaking news coverage and in-depth news stories to reporting on school and government meetings and personality profiles.

Here is a selection of my work:

-Defining a downtown

What does a community do if it doesn't have a downtown? Paradise town leaders have been working to carve a downtown out of a fading business district. Officials hope a revitalized downtown can spur development throughout the community and staunch the flow of dollars to the nearby city of Chico.

I explored the matter in an October 2005 E-R story.

The award winners

During my professional career, my writing has been honored with a number of awards for spot news, sustained coverage, sports enterprise and news column. A listing of the award-winning stories can be found here.

In October 2004, the Michigan Press Association has announced first place and third place awards for my work in spot news stories. More on my specific awards. General award info is on my pro blog.

High-wire writing

Over the years, I've written stories that have been featured numerous times on the Michigan wire of The Associated Press. Stories with my byline have run in many Michigan and Wisconsin newspapers such as the Detroit News, The Flint Journal and the Menominee EagleHerald, among others. More

Local pasty to be Arnold’s humble pie

When California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger dug into his piece of humble pie after the Detroit Pistons' dominating victory over the L.A. Lakers, he bit into a Copper Country pasty. More

Breaking News: The end of a presidency

Curt Tompkins, the longtime president of Michigan Tech University, announced that he would leave the university in March 2004. However, the governing Board of Control decided later that month to terminate his contract immediately.

Here is how I covered the board's decision on deadline for the Gazette.

UPDATE OCT 2004: These stories just won a 2004 third place award from the Michigan Press Association. More info here.

From the archives
My first foray into journalism began in 1996 at UC San Diego. I went into The UCSD Guardian and asked what I could do. I started out as a news designer before working up to co-news editor. During my time as editor, I wrote about a story a week.

I put about one quarter's worth of stories and all my paper commentaries online in an older version of my Web site. It's presented in its originally format, although expired Web links have been removed.

The site design was modified from the newspaper's 1997-98 Web site design as implemented by then-Design Editor Walt Dickinson.

To see a blast from the past, click here.

Comments? Send your comments or questions to rtolson -at-

Site © 2004-2006, Ryan Olson
Material from The Daily Mining Gazette © 2001-2004, Ogden News Publishing of Mich.
Material from the Enterprise-Record © 2005-2006, MediaNews Group Inc.