THE WE ARE K-STATE CONTRIBUTORS
More than two-dozen Student Publications alumni returned to Kedzie Hall in October 2012 to join with students and create We Are K-State, 25 years after student and alumni photographers made the iconic A Week At Kansas State.
The 1986 book was an important touchstone for many of them, and they were excited to be on campus again, telling visual stories about their alma mater. In reminiscing, they hit on common themes about the K-State photojournalism tradition: learning by doing, mentorship — including between professionals and students — and working on the student newspaper as freshman, something you couldn’t do at other schools. Several also mentioned the importance of the Flint Hills Publications Workshop.
The laboratory of the Collegian and Royal Purple forged not just skills and careers but many lifelong friendships (and marriages). Nearly everyone said they wanted to take part in We Are K-State to see old friends and “give back” in appreciation for the mentoring and great experiences they had.
Alumni and student biographies follow
*denotes 1986 A Week at Kansas State participation
Margaret Clarkin Spano, Lee’s Summit, Mo.
Digital Advertising Executive
Maggie, 42, started taking pictures for her high school newspaper after her dad gave her a camera he bought during the Vietnam War. When it came time to pick a college, he helped again, by bringing home a copy of A Week At Kansas State. “I knew I wanted to be a photographer,” she says. “When I looked at that book I decided that I wanted to go to that school. I wanted to be a part of that history and learn all the things that those photographers learned at school.”
Maggie shot for the Topeka Capital-Journal and Parsons Sun, then worked for the Independence (Mo.) Examiner for several years before creating the paper’s website. “That’s when I started my path into new media and digital work.” From 1999-2012 she worked at Universal Uclick, a division of Andrews McMeel Universal, as webmaster, producer, project manager, content director and now operations director. Maggie is now director of digital ad operations for Penton Media. She’s proud to be editor of We Are K-State. “I am a fierce supporter of Kansas State University. I want to help the Collegian Media Group and showcase the work of excellent photojournalists who have gone to K-State.”
Christopher T. Assaf, Towsend, Md.
Multimedia editor-video, the Baltimore Sun
Chris, 43, started shooting for his high school yearbook and newspaper as a sophomore. By junior year, he knew he wanted to do it for a living. He followed the Royal Purple and Collegian as a high schooler but decided for sure to go to K-State when he went to education day during the first AWAKS. “I came up with friends like Mark Leffingwell. I saw Pete Souza and Jim Richardson. Tim Janicke critiqued my work,” Chris says. “I was already hooked on photojournalism, but I really wanted to go to K-State after that.”
After graduation, Chris moved to California. He freelanced for the Orange County Register and shot for the Newport Beach-Costa Mesa Daily Pilot. He went to Maine as chief photographer for the Journal Tribune in Biddeford. He moved to Chicago where he worked for the Courier News in Elgin and CityTalk magazine. In 2003, he went to the Baltimore Sun. He switched to video in 2008. “K-State means a lot because it’s how I developed as a person,” he says. “I shaped it. And it shaped me.” He wanted to help lead the project “to try to have an impact on K-State and the journalism students through visual storytelling.”
Gary Haynes, San Francisco*
Gary, 76, a native of Salina, died of natural causes at his home in San Francisco less than two months after he was in Manhattan for this project. The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Marie McCullough and Philadelphia Daily News’ John Morrison wrote about his life. Read their work on the National Press Photographers Association website: nppa.org or at philly.com. (Or scroll down to see the full biographies posted here.)
Gary told us he first got interested in photography when he was 13. His dad bought him a camera and built a darkroom in their house. Gary “palled around” with Salina Journal photographers and was published when he was just 15. Headed to KU with a scholarship, he found out he couldn’t work on the student paper as a freshman. So he went to K-State. He shot for multiple papers and UPI while in college. After graduation in 1957, he took pictures in the Army, shot for the Salina Journal and then was hired by UPI in 1958. Gary had a long and distinguished career as a photojournalist, including stints in multiple cities for UPI (Detroit, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Los Angeles, New York), two years at the New York Times and then 20 years with the Philadelphia Inquirer. Gary moved to San Francisco in 2011. He was semi-retired. He told us: “I want to pay back the incredible education they gave us here — that we didn’t appreciate at the time. K-State was very good to me.”
Stephen Wolgast, Topeka*
Director, Collegian Media Group
After getting a political science degree, Steve, 46, worked on Congressman Jim Slattery’s re-election campaign, then as a photographer for the Topeka Capital-Journal before getting a master’s in journalism from Columbia University. He then worked as a reporter in Estonia and as an editor in Wyoming, Louisiana and Ohio. From 2000 to 2009, he was a design editor at the New York Times. Steve came back to K-State in 2009. He’s an assistant professor of journalism and digital media and director of Collegian Media Group, the new name of Student Publications Inc.
Looking back, he says, “The lessons I learned as a student in the Collegian newsroom hold true in every journalism job I’ve had. Curiosity and doggedness matter just as much as getting better every day.” He remembers the 1986 AWAKS project: “It was my first year at K-State, having transferred from Boston University. I shot photos and developed countless rolls of black-and-white film in the darkroom. That was an all-nighter, and Rob Squires, another student photographer, helped me makes a contact sheet for every roll.” As for the 2012 version, “I’m thrilled I get to work with alumni and the current students to help share these stories.”
Andy Nelson, Manhattan*
Head of the journalism and digital media sequence, K-State’s A.Q. Miller School of Journalism
Andy is the R.M. Seaton Professional Journalism Chair at Kansas State University where he teaches photojournalism and multimedia storytelling. Prior to his appointment at K-State, Andy was an independent photojournalist and multimedia producer based in Bangkok, Thailand.
From 1997 to 2008, he was the Washington, D.C.-based staff photographer for the Christian Science Monitor where he covered stories in more than 30 countries, including the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, tsunami recovery efforts in Indonesia and Sri Lanka, Kosovo refugee crisis, three U.S. presidential campaigns, the impeachment hearings of President Bill Clinton and numerous feature stories throughout the United States and worldwide. Andy was a staff photographer at the Register-Guard newspaper in Eugene, Oregon from 1988 to 1997. His work has won awards in the Pictures of the Year competition as well as the White House News Photographers Association annual contest.
Tim Lindemuth, Manhattan
Innkeeper, Moore House Bed & Breakfast
Now 63, Tim’s choice of an Army communications job in the Vietnam War was the beginning of a lifelong career. He studied mathematics at Potsdam College in New York, before getting his his master’s in journalism at K-State in 1977. After working as assistant director of News Services in Anderson Hall for 16 years, Tim got his “dream job” in 1993, editing the Alumni Association’s K-Stater magazine. He retired in June 2012 and is now inkeeper for Moore House Bed & Breakfast, a historic home he has lived in since 1978 that was first owned by the woman Moore Hall is named after.
Tim was eager to lend his knowledge of the university and contacts to We Are K-State. He values his long ties ties to the journalism school. “It prepared me for life. I started in journalism at K-State and continued from there. I basically never left campus,” he says. “It’s great to see old friends back on campus. I knew I would remember a lot of the alumni since I’ve been at university for 37 years.”
Tim Janicke, Shawnee*
Tim, 58, was the project coordinator and book editor for A Week at Kansas State in 1986 and is someone whose name comes up often when other photographers discuss mentors who made a difference in their careers. He says of his time at Student Pub: “It was a professional experience. It prepared me for the world. I have many fond memories of it.”
Tim left K-State in 1976 – several credits short of graduating – to become chief photographer at the Olathe Daily News. In 1980, he went to The Hutchinson News as director of graphics and design, returning to the Kansas City area in 1984 to work for The Kansas City Star (and the now retired Times) as picture editor and assistant managing editor/photography. Incidentally, he finally earned his degree from K-State in 1987. Over the years, he taught photojournalism at K-State and KU and was a regular speaker and instructor for various workshops, including the Flint Hills Publications Workshop. Tim spent 23 years at The Star, becoming editor of Star Magazine in 1997, a position he held until a cancer diagnosis in 2007. An amazing example of survivorship, he has been restored to good health and enjoys staying in touch with his comrades in journalism.
Brett Hacker, Shawnee*
Photographer, KCTV-5, Kansas City
Brett, 47, started his career as a stringer for Agence France-Presse and United Press International in Kansas City, then a contract photographer for UPI covering the Royals, Chiefs and Midwest news. One night he went on a ride-along with a local ABC photographer. The friend urged Brett to start freelancing for TV. “I started heading to spot news overnight when the stations didn’t have anyone.” In 1992, the CBS station (KCTV) asked Brett if he could fill when one of their news photographers was killed. “I’ve been there ever since. That was 21 years ago,” he says.
Brett came to K-State after graduating from Johnson County Community College where he and fellow K-Stater Deron Johnson worked together on the newspaper. Brett had photos in the first AWAKS book while a student. Brett was a stringer for multiple papers and agencies while in school, learning from older photographers to be confident and just go for it. “I learned everything I know just doing it, working,” he says. “I am self-taught in video. K-State really did not offer much back then in video.”
Jeff Tuttle, Wichita*
Owner, Jeff Tuttle Photography
Jeff, 52, was a 21-year-old Wichita State student when his new bride gave him a camera for a wedding gift. It sparked an interest he had since he was a kid hanging Sports Illustrated photos in his childhood bedroom. He left Wichita for Manhattan when a friend who went to K-State looked at his photos and said, “This is where you need to be.” After graduating in 1986, Jeff worked under an award-winning photo editor at a paper in Indiana then spent 22 years at the Wichita Eagle. He now runs his own business, doing editorial and commercial photography.
Of his time at Student Pub, Jeff says: “It set the tone for everything I do today. What I learned back then was you work hard. Not just making a good picture. But planning, getting all the I’s dotted and the T’s crossed before you go out. I still have a passion for what I do, just like I did back then.” He’s proud to be part of K-State’s photojournalism mentorship legacy. “I’m part of that heritage. It’s my responsibility to take part in anything that I can.”
Cary Conover, Wichita
Photojournalism teacher, Andover High School
A freestyle bicyclist in high school, Cary, 38, took his first photography class so he and his friends could take pictures of themselves doing stunts. He saw the Royal Purple in his journalism room, noting that the same photographers shot for the book four years in a row. He wanted to do that. “I was preoccupied with being able to shoot as a freshman.” What did he take away from Student Pub? “What hard work it was.”
After college, Cary worked for a newspaper in Michigan, then moved to New York to freelance and to pursue his passion for black & white documentary street photography. He shot for the New York Times, the Village Voice and papers around the country. Returning to K-State to teach photography at the Flint Hills Publications Workshop was the highlight of his summers, so when he heard of an opportunity to teach high school photojournalism near his hometown, he went for it. “I’ve actually had some modest success freelancing as a teacher as well, doing adjunct work at various colleges in the area.” Cary calls the photographic tradition at K-State “a special thing.”
Allen Eyestone, West Palm Beach*
Senior photographer, Palm Beach Post
Allen, 52, began his photography career working for his high school yearbook and newspaper while growing up in Manhattan. During his first year at K-State, he was painting sheep pens at the CiCo Park fairgrounds. Scott Liebler, a friend from high school and a Collegian photographer, shot a feature photo of him. Liebler told him to come by The Collegian. “Everyone is graduating and they need good photographers.” Eyestone also got encouragement from Pete Souza, who judged a statewide photo contest that Eyestone won during high school.
After graduating with a business management degree in 1984, Eyestone got an internship at The Palm Beach Post. He’s been there since. He says he’s glad to see a few longtime friends at the K-State gatherings and has great memories of working with talented photographers at K-State. “That’s how I learned to do things,” he said. “Going out and shooting every day and working with really dedicated journalists. We all just learned from each other, learning by doing. Textbooks had nothing to do with it.”
Eyestone lives in Wellington, Florida, with his wife, Beth Baker Eyestone. They met at Kedzie Hall, and she is a former Collegian editor.
Karen Mikols Bonar, Salina
Owner, Heartland Photography
Karen, 31, says she struggled with the decision to come to K-State. “My parents were alums. I looked at a lot of different colleges. I came because I could start at the paper as a freshman. My decision was affirmed when I got here.” Tim Janicke became a mentor. “I took photojournalism with Tim. I wouldn’t have gotten an internship without that class.” Karen took a six-month break after her first semester at K-State to do that internship at the Topeka Capital-Journal. She then re-enrolled and completed her journalism degree.
She now owns Heartland Photography in Salina. Prior to that, she shot for papers in Independence and Hays. “During that time, I started my wedding and portrait business. I’ve been doing it full time since 2006.” Karen likes how K-State photojournalism is passed down from one generation to the next, citing the Salina Project during spring break as one example “It’s cool how the alumni are involved. Alumni gave back to me when I was a student. I wanted to do the same. As a K-State alum, that’s what you do.”
Justin Hayworth, DesMoines, Iowa
Photographer/videographer, Grinnell College
Justin, 34, wanted to be like his big brother. “He shot pictures for yearbook and newspaper in high school. I thought that was the coolest thing ever.” Then he met Jeff Tuttle and Bo Rader, K-Staters at the Wichita Eagle. “They were pretty big mentors to me. They would shoot at my high school. Our basketball tream was one of best in the state. I would approach them and pester them. I was shooting, too. I think they thought they would scare me off by bringing me in to the paper. But I just fit in.” He’s excited to give back. “I wouldn’t be here now without the guys who helped me.”
After graduation, Justin shot briefly for the Salina Journal, then 5½ years in both Duluth and DesMoines before being hired at Grinnell. Looking back, he says, “There were 10 of us who were photographers for Student Pub. It was just a really great environment. We could be pretty cutthroat but it was just healthy competition. Once we went to Houston — seven of us in a Suburban — for a National Press Photographers short course. We didn’t see ourselves as college paper.”
John La Barge, Manhattan*
Owner, J&C Imaging
John, 48, was a bit of an over-achiever. “I did a lot of internships. Five of them. I knew that’s where it was at,” he says. After leaving K-State in 1988, he was a photojournalist for about a dozen years, including eight at the Manhattan Mercury. Then he worked at K-State’s Photo Services for six years. In 2001, he and his wife opened a portrait studio, J&S Imaging.
John says he was drawn to K-State. At Cloud County Community College in his hometown of Concordia he saw the UDK, the Missourian and the Collegian. “I liked the Collegian. I transferred to work at the Collegian.” He also liked the welcome he got from photographers like Chris Stewart and Scot Morissey when he came for a visit. John has great memories. “I loved it. It was like a family. We practically lived there. We all ate together, lived together, did everything together.” He’s glad he could give back. “I wanted to help, to be part of it again. I was a student for last book. It was really cool.”
Steven Dearinger, Burleson, Texas
Digital Asset Manager, Army and Air Force Exchange Service
Steven, 33, is in charge of photography for the E-Commerce division of Army and Air Force Exchange Service in Dallas. He directs photo shoots, does photo styling, retouching handles image production for their catalogs and website. After his 2001 graduation, Steven was a staff photographer for the Amarillo Globe-News for five years and also worked for dillards.com.
He says he learned at a lot at Student Pub and made lifelong friendships there, including meeting his wife. “It was a good learning experience, actually doing the shooting on a daily basis,” he says. “I probably wouldn’t have gotten that anywhere else. I got more of an education working for the RP and Collegian than anything else.” He jumped at the chance to come back for AWAKS II. “I saw the previous book when I was in school,” he says. “It was very inspirational. I didn’t want to not be part of it. It may be another 25 years before they do another one.”
Nancy Zogleman, Leawood*
After going to Hutchinson Community College and shooting for the Hutch News, Nancy, 54, was recruited by some people she knew — students and professional photographers — to come to K-State. “I was a journalism major from the get go,” she says, and she continued to work for the Hutch News during summers. “Even though I did other stuff on campus, what I remember was it seemed like the Collegian was always the place to hang out.”
After graduation, Nancy was site photographer and historian for the Wolf Creek nuclear plant. She got her law degree at Washburn and then worked for the Kansas speaker, Senate majority leader and Senate president, and as a photographer for the governer. Nancy was legislative director for Blue Cross and Blue Shield then worked for Pfizer for 18 years as director of government relations. Today she is a legislative consultant for a variety of clients in Topeka. “Even though my career path took me away from photography, I always had a camera nearby,” she says. “I still trade in camera gear like some people trade in stocks.”
Brian Kratzer, Columbia, Mo.
Assistant professor of journalism, University of Missouri
Director of photography, Columbia Missourian
Brian, 42, knew he wanted to be a photographer at age 14. He did the Flint Hills Publications Workshop and shot for the McPherson Sentinal in high school. He went straight to Kedzie when he came to K-State. After graduation, he shot for a paper in Idaho and the Columbia Daily Tribune, then got a master’s in journalism at the University of Missouri. He was director of photography for the Daily Tribune, then went to Gainesville, Fla., where he was director of photography and assistant managing editor for online and multimedia. Since 2010, he has been an assistant professor and director of photography at the Missouri School of Journalism.
Some favorite memories: filling up the Royal Purple with newsprint one night with Gary “Bear” Lytle and adjusting the scanner antenna on the roof of Kedzie with Cary Conover. He came back for We Are K-State to see old friends and because “AWAKS always had this presence since I’ve known K-State. To me, as a K-Stater, I needed to be a part of it. I felt compelled to be here.”
Steve Hebert, Overland Park
Director of photography, Curious Pixel
Steve, 37, went to high school with Cary Conover in Wichita. They shot for the newspaper and yearbook together. Hearing about Cary’s experiences at K-State, Steve knew it was a good place to get better and to be part of a fun fraternity. He says he most enjoyed the cameraderie among the student photographers and the way they challenged each other.
After graduating, Steve worked at a paper in North Carolina. He’s now a freelance photographer, doing a lot of work for the New York Times and Wall Street Journal, and is director of photography for Curious Pixel, an advertising and digital marketing agency owned by his wife. Steve admired A Week At Kansas State: “I knew about the previous book. Those of us who aspire to do this for a living, who did it in college, this is right up our alley. It’s a nice way to break the monotony of real paying work. It reminds you of being 18 and green behind the ears.”
Scott Boyd, Lawrence
IT account management, Perceptive Software
Scott, 42, was still in high school, when he got to tag along with his friend Brad Camp on assignment for the Collegian. The two had learned the ropes together at Manhattan High School, shooting for the yearbook and newspaper, and Scott knew he wanted to follow in Brad’s footsteps at Student Pub. So as soon as he got to campus, Scott started working for the ad staff and Collegian. He really enjoyed the collaboration and cameraderie with other photogs.
A business major, Scott ran a small business in Manhattan right out of college, then got into IT systems and support. He has lived in Lawrence since 1997. Scott says he jumped at the chance to come back for We Are K-State. “I wanted to help. To see old friends and actually have fun shooting,” he says. “Other than a few freelance jobs and shooting events for work, I don’t shoot regularly anymore. Photography was one of the more enjoyable parts of my life. I miss it on a regular basis.”
J. Matthew Rhea, Oakland, Calif.
Co-founder, Lunatec Inc.
Freelance video editor
Kelly Glasscock, Derby
Photojournalism teacher, Derby High School
Kelly, 32, grew up in Manhattan. When he was in high school, a student teacher saw his work and suggested he come work for the Collegian. He didn’t waste any time, starting the summer before college. After graduating with a journalism degree, Kelly shot for a paper in Jackson Hole, Wyo., then moved back to Kansas and freelanced for the Wichita Eagle and Powercat Illustrated. Now a teacher at Derby High School, he still covers K-State sports. “I get to enjoy the best of both worlds. The stability of a full time job and the thrill of being a freelance photographer.”
Kelly says he stays connected to K-State and didn’t think twice about being part of A Week At Kansas State. “I felt like I was back in college with the old photo staff,” he says of shooting the K-State vs. KU football game. “I loved hearing all the stories from our legendary K-State photogs. Hearing Gary Haynes speak for one of his last lectures was a memory I’ll hang on to for quiet some time.”
Matt Stamey, Gainesville, Fla.
Photographer, Gainesville Sun
Born and raised in Manhattan, Matt Stamey, 32, is a third-generation K-Stater. He shot for the Manhattan Mercury part-time his first two years in college but quit to put his energies into Student Publications, where many of his friends were. After graduating with a journalism degree, he moved to Houma, La. (south of New Orleans) and worked for the Courier as the chief photographer, covering Hurricane Katrina and the Gulf oil spill. In 2010 he moved to Gainesville, Fla., where he’s a staff photographer at the Sun.
Of all his memories from K-State, the road trips stand out. “Trips to Phoenix, Memphis, Dallas, Lincoln, Portland. Those were some of the greatest memories from college. And some of the greatest friendships ever.” He was excited to contribute to We Are K-State. “All through college I would look at the first AWAKS book and want to be a part of something like that. I’d see the group photo in the back and it was filled with some really top-notch photogs. I wish I could have been in Manhattan. But shooting some K-State football greats in Tampa was a close second.”
John Sleezer, Olathe
Photographer, Kansas City Star
John, 54, shot for the Philadelphia Inquirer and Columbia Daily Tribune before being hired at the Kansas City Star where he has been for nearly 25 years. He missed AWAKS in 1986. “I had a plane ticket and was ready to come back, but my daughter Sarah was born a few days before the week started. Many years later, she graduated from Kansas State.”
John was a photographer in the Army before college. “I visited K-State and met student photographers who welcomed me and encouraged me to come there. That sold it for me,” he says. “The Collegian was as close to real life as I could get while being a student. We treated every day at the Collegian just like a real-world daily newspaper. The best memory I have is the close friendships made in the photo staff. We encouraged each other to do better.” John points out that photojournalism is changing. “I hope that instructors at K-State can add to their technical skill sets to help prepare students to enter the job market.”
Erin Perry O’Donnell, Wichita
Freelance writer and editor
Erin, 41, was a high school journalist but chose another major when she came to K-State. She signed up to work at the Royal Purple, though, and within two months was changing her major. After college, she wrote for papers in Kansas City, Texas and Colorado, then did content management and design for newspaper and other webites in Colorado, Phoenix and Las Vegas. She wrote for UNLV’s alumni magazine before moving back to Wichita in 2005, where she freelances for a wide variety of clients and projects. “I’m busier than I’ve ever been, more multi-media than I’ve ever been, always changing hats and changing voices.”
Erin was inspired by the photographers she worked with at the Collegian and Royal Purple: “Even though I was always a writer, I ran with the photogs as much as they would let me. I was drawn to the way they told their stories because it enhanced ours so much. There was a magic here that I’ve never seen in another newsroom.” She calls the first AWAKS book “a fantastic time capsule.”
Lajean Rau-Keene, Tonganoxie
Senior copywriter, Walz Tetrick Advertising
Lajean, 43, never considered a journalism career until she had to take R2 while tentatively pursuing an advertising degree. She knew she had found “her place” the minute she entered the Collegian newsroom, where she worked until she graduated. After completing education and journalism degrees, Lajean worked for the Kansas City Star for 16 years, as a copy editor, letters editor and ombudsman on the editorial page, then as a features editor. She now writes and edits for an advertising agency in the Kansas City area.
Lajean says she never forgot the cameraderie and learn-by-doing experience at Student Pub. “There’s no better laboratory for learning than running an actual daily newspaper. Being trusted with that responsibility and expected to learn how to get it done is better than any class you can take. I learned everything I know from those students and our adviser, Ron Johnson. I feel connected to those people forever,” she says. “As for the photographers, they’ve always blown me away. The informal mentorship program they’ve created is amazing.”
Shelby Danielsen, Parkville, Mo.
Shelby, 23, says she learned a lot working on this project. “I’m interested in almost every facet of journalism,” from covering politics to features to investigative reporting. She loves both photography and writing. And as director of a short film club, she developed a passion for fiilmmaking. Shelby hopes to see film production worked into the j-school curriculum. “I’d love to work in documentary filmmaking like National Geographic.” After graduation, Shelby took a job as broadcast producer at Channel 9 News in Denver.
Emily DeShazer, Topeka
Emily, 20, says her favorite thing about journalism is “being able to be in the thick of things.” Passionate about sports photography, she wants to be an NFL photographer someday. She says the experience of working alongside alumni photographers was a good one. “I learned a lot from these guys. I really appreciate them. This is actual real experience and networking. I can catch up on school later.”
Hannah Hunsinger, Olathe
Hannah, 20, transferred from Johnson County Community College, where she also shot for the student paper, “so it was only natural I would come to Student Publications.” She says she wanted to participate in this project to interact with alumni photographers: “It was great to hear their stories and learn how they shoot. And to find out about all the different stories there are to be told around campus.”
Ashlee Mayo, Winfield
Fine Arts, Photography
Ashlee, 23, is pursuing a minor in journalism. She got her entree into Student Publications because of Andy Nelson’s photojournalism class. Eventually she would like to open a wedding and portrait photography business. Ashlee says it was fun to hear the alumni photographers “reminisce about their glory days” and she appreciated the opportunity to meet them and pick their brains. “I loved being able to work with the other photographers, and to be involved in a project that will stand the test of time.”
Evert Nelson, Tecumseh
Since an early age, Evert, 20, has followed in his uncle Andy Nelson’s footsteps in becoming a photojournalist. He started his photo career in middle school while working on the yearbook as a photographer and designer. After a year at Washburn University, he transferred to K-State, encouraged by his uncle to join the Student Pub staff. Evert has interned at the Salina Journal and plans to pursue a photojournalism career. “The AWAKS project was a great way of seeing the history of Student Publication and the possibilities that are out there after your time at Kansas State,” he says.
Tommy Theis, Olathe
Tommy, 25, didn’t do journalism in high school and is a computer science major, but he says he “loves being able to use his computer skills to manipulate images and perfect them.” He had two friends who shot for Student Publications and they talked him into joining them. He now wants to be a photojournalist if he doesn’t work in computers. “I like being able to freeze time and save memories,”f he says. Tommy was inspired by the alumni shooters. “It was very informative and got me excited to work harder.”
Jordan Wegele, Kansas City, Kan.
Psychology, emphasis in photojournalism
Jordan, 23, who was home-schooled, got her love for photography from her dad when she was young. “I’ve been trying to be more professional in the last two or three years,” she says. Jordan worked for the paper at Johnson County Community College before transferring. She’d like to work in marriage and family counseling and help mission-based ministries through photojournalism. Of her time with the alumni: “It’s such an honor to get to talk to them.”
Jacob Wilson, Merriam
Jacob, 19, had only been shooting for Student Pub for a few weeks when alumni arrived for We Are K-State. It was a little daunting, he admits. But he loved the reactions he got when presenting his portfolio. “The advice and support I received from them was wonderful,” he says. “It was an extremely valuable experience, to learn from the best.” Jacob’s passion for photojournalism started in high school. He came to K-State to continue improving and is considering pursuing a career in sports photography.
Jacob Wilson was the youngest student photographer to take part in We Are K-State. The editors loved the memories his picked as his favorites so far in his young career. Reminded them of some other photographers they know:
“When I was in high school, shooting the school’s cross country team during training, I made the ridiculous decision to run with them down the city streets in order to get some ‘epic’ action shots. So for about a half of a mile, I ran behind them, in front of them, and next to them, pretty much just randomly aiming my camera and taking photos. Suffice it to say, all of the photos turned out TERRIBLE. But I really didn’t care. It was such a fun experience, and I feel like I earned the respect of the whole team. That was the moment where they realized how serious I was. For the rest of the year, they would always smile and laugh when I came over to take pictures. We built a bond.
“A favorite memory from K-State came when I had the chance to shoot my first men’s basketball game. K-State’s sophomore guard Angel Rodriguez scored a basket and and was fouled on the play. In anticipation of Angel crashing into me, I instinctively put my camera down to my lap. Luckily, he didn’t crash into me. Instead, after hearing the whistle blow signaling he was fouled on the play, both he and sophomore forward Thomas Gipson screamed with delight. Seeing Gipson’s expression, but knowing I didn’t have time to pull my camera back up, I just pointed the camera as best as I could, hit the focus, and smashed on the shutter-release button. The photo I took turned out to be one of my favorite photos that I’ve ever taken. Gipson is the focus, screaming at Rodriguez who is framing the picture while also screaming. All of the hard work it takes to shoot an event always pays off when you get photos like that.”
GARY HAYNES OBITUARIES
By Marie McCullough, Inquirer Staff Writer
Gary Haynes, a distinguished photojournalist who assembled and directed a team of Pulitzer Prize-winning photographers at The Inquirer in the 1970s and ’80s, has died at 76.
Mr. Haynes was found Friday morning at his home in San Francisco after family and friends could not reach him by phone. The Medical Examiner’s Office there said Mr. Haynes died of natural causes that were still being determined.
“Almost overnight, he brought the paper into modern photojournalism,” recalled Gene Roberts, the Inquirer editor who hired Mr. Haynes away from the New York Times in 1974. “He brought in a whole new wave of photographers.”
Two of Mr. Haynes’ hires won Pulitzer Prizes for covering violence in El Salvador and the homeless in Philadelphia. A third prize, for coverage of the Three Mile Island nuclear disaster, went to the staff.
Clem Murray, now a senior Inquirer photographer, remembered Mr. Haynes’ uncanny ability to “find the picture within the picture” – cropping it to find the most important, dramatic element for readers.
“Gary was a big personality with big ideas,” Murray said. “He pushed us to be creative and do whatever it took to capture ‘The Moment.’ ”
A native of Salina, Kan., Mr. Haynes got his first job behind a camera during a two-year stint in the Army. But his career really took off in 1958, when the 23-year-old Kansas State University journalism graduate was hired by United Press International in Detroit.
He spent the turbulent 1960s documenting the civil rights movement, anti-Vietnam War demonstrations, space launches, the Tokyo and Mexico City Olympics, the World Series, presidential campaigns, and the upheaval after President John F. Kennedy’s assassination.
Decades later, after Mr. Haynes retired, he was given special access to the UPI photo archives. He provided a precious window on late 20th-century history with the resulting 2006 book, Picture This!: The Inside Story and Classic Photos of UPI Newspictures.
At The Inquirer, he used his gift for storytelling and for getting the best out of his “shooters” to make sure visual elements were given the same prominence and space as text.
“Gary was always an easygoing person, but a fierce advocate for photography and graphics,” said Gene Foreman, the paper’s former longtime managing editor.
Mr. Haynes also loved to have fun. At one well-attended party where he ran out of ingredients for his specialty drink, the daiquiri, he “had an inspiration,” Roberts said. “He created refried-bean daiquiris.”
“He was just a big kid; he didn’t act his age,” said Mr. Haynes’ son, Philip. “He was really smart, kind, loving, and adventurous.”
In addition to his son, Mr. Haynes is survived by two daughters, Stephanie and Emily.
By John F. Morrison, Daily News Staff Writer
When Bert Fox got a load of the Inquirer newsroom in 1982, he fled.
But Gary Haynes would have none of it. He had contacted Bert, who was picture editor at the Southern Mail Tribune in Medford, Ore., because he needed a picture editor to help him put together his dream team of photographers for the Inquirer.
“I looked at the newsroom and said I can’t work here – it’s too big,” Bert said. “But Gary called me and talked to me. He wooed me into the Inquirer.”
Gary Haynes was not a man to take no for an answer.
“I went from Dodger Stadium to the Philippines, to cover the assassination of [Benigno] Aquino,” he said. “Everybody got a trip around the world. It helped me grow as a photographer.”
“He was bigger than life,” Bert Fox, now with the Charlotte Observer, said of Gary. “He was full of stories. His stories were endless; not just way back but what we did last week, what we were going to do next month. How we were going to tackle his big project. He was a leader by action.”
Bonnie Weller found that out when she was assigned to photograph a female AIDS patient in a hospital for a story about a man who had deliberately infected women with the disease.
“I told Gary, I should call first and get permission to photograph her,” she said. “But he told me to ‘just walk in as if you own the hospital.’ I did, and it worked.”
He directed his passion for photographic excellence to put together what Bert Fox called the “best core of photographers ever seen on a newspaper.”
Gary performed his feats of excellence in the Gene Roberts era of the 1970s and ’80s, when the Inquirer won 17 Pulitzer Prizes, including three by photographers.
The photographers who won the cherished honors were all hired by Gary Haynes.
He was found dead in his home Friday after family and friends were not able to reach him. The San Francisco Medical Examiner’s Office said he died of natural causes. He was 76.
“Almost overnight, he brought the paper into modern photojournalism,” Roberts, the Inquirer editor who had hired Gary from the New York Times in 1974, told the Inquirer. “He brought in a whole new wave of photographers.”
Among them was John Paul Filo, who had already won a Pulitzer by the time Gary hired him in 1981. He won for the famous photo of a girl crying over the body of a Kent State student who was one of the victims of the shootings by Ohio National Guard troops during campus demonstrations on May 4, 1970.
“I was one of the first to come into his department,” said John, who was with the Associated Press when Gary hired him. “He was looking for a wire service photographer who could travel.”
“He was a great boss. He expected hard work, but he also liked to play hard. He was very outspoken, very visual.”
John, who is now on the staff of the CBS communications department, covered the 1981 National League baseball season, shortened by a players’ strike. Two years later, he went farther west on a very different kind of story.
“A lot of people were afraid of him,” said Bonnie Weller, who was at the Inquirer from 1988 to 2010, a former teacher of photography and now a free-lancer. “He was very strong and determined about his work. Things had to be done his way. That was all there was to it.
“He was fierce and demanding. He kept his eye on everything to make sure it was done right. He was a funny man, a happy man, very passionate.”
Gary was a native of Salina, Kan. He started taking pictures in the Army and was hired by United Press International in 1958.
He photographed some of the exciting doings of the remarkable ’60s – the civil-rights movement, anti-Vietnam War demonstrations, space launches, the Tokyo and Mexico City Olympics, a World Series, presidential campaigns, and the like – before joining the New York Times.
He is survived by a son, Philip; and two daughters, Stephanie and Emily.
Services: Were being arranged.