Greetings Fort Worth!
I’m the new editor of the Star-Telegram and Star-Telegram.com.
I guess “new” is a relative word, as I’ve been on the job about three and a half months. I intended to write sooner, but when you immerse yourself in a new job, you look up one day and realize three and a half months have already gone by.
I came to Fort Worth from Kansas, where I was the editor of The Wichita Eagle/Kansas.com, which, like the Star-Telegram, is a newspaper and news website owned by McClatchy.
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While most of my time and efforts have been focused on our newsroom, I’ve also had time to get to know Fort Worth.
I did some weekend commuting to and from Wichita my first month or so here as my wife (a teacher) and my younger son (a high school senior) finished the school year. You learn a lot about a community from people such as Uber drivers and the folks you sit next to on airplanes.
From them I learned that Fort Worth prides itself in a slower pace and a more small-town feel than our larger neighbor to the east. I found it hard to believe that a city approaching 900,000 people could feel like a small town, but I get it now.
As a resident, I’ve been lucky enough to get multiple perspectives of our city.
I was in temporary housing for the first three months in the river bluff area on the north edge of downtown. From there, I enjoyed walks downtown to eat or go to the movies.
I jogged and walked along the Trinity River trail system. I will admit I did not enjoy jogging up the steep hill from the river at North Taylor Street downtown. This jogger is not used to hills, after living 10 years in the flatlands of West Tennessee and two years in Wichita, where the biggest hill is the landfill.
I saw the diverse population that makes our city so vibrant, as folks ran, walked, biked and picnicked along the river, while others paddled, swam or fished in its waters.
I attended services in one of downtown’s historic churches, and my wife and I got a sample of the city’s entertainment offerings when we saw “Mamma Mia!” at Casa Manana.
Now that we’ve bought a house in southwest Fort Worth, I’m getting a more suburban feel. Every shopping and restaurant need we could imagine can be met along South Hulen Street or Bryant Irvin Road.
Green spaces, walking trails, ponds and a community center are within walking distance of our house. New homes continue to be built around ours, evidence of our city’s rapid growth.
I have many more places to explore, but I don’t need to go any farther to know that Fort Worth is a great place to live and work. I’m excited to be here and look forward to getting to know our city even better.
My career has taken my family to five different cities — Wichita; Jackson, Tennessee; Fayetteville, North Carolina; and Geneva, New York. All are home in their special way.
I’m now glad to call Fort Worth and the Star-Telegram home.
Steve Coffman is the editor of the Star-Telegram and Star-Telegram.com. Follow him on Twitter: @SteveCoffman1.