Email: Scott.Raynor@patch.com Phone: 319-333-9659
Bio: I grew up in Glenview, Illinois, a wealthy northern suburb of Chicago. I spent my adolescence in an occasionally snooty atmosphere exacerbated by the housing bubble and what I call the jet-black-Escalade bubble.
I was a curious and confused child. My high school role model said on the first day that he hoped we'd feel less confident in what we thought we knew by the end of the class. It worked really well for me.
I didn't know what I wanted to do my freshman, or sophomore, year of college, but I knew where my skills were and where my interest lay. I liked to learn — whether it was science, history or the intimacy of human experience in books — and I liked to write.
I began to write for my school paper, The Western Courier. My first article was on the Western Illinois University's bus program — it was a shock that helped me realize I had to work harder if I wanted to tell the kinds of stories that fascinated me.
Then I left.
I transferred to the University of Iowa and starting working at the Daily Iowan. My metro editors had expectations for stories and quality that were overwhelming at first, but after time I learned a tremendous amount about reporting and writing. Even today it stands as the greatest learning experience of my life — journalistic or otherwise.
I also worked at The Iowa Center for Public Affairs Journalism, a non-profit investigative and explanatory news organization started by a professor of mine, Steve Berry. I then interned at The Corridor Business Journal — a business weekly out of Iowa City — followed by an internship with Patch in the northern metro Detroit area.
Now I'm in Marion — back in eastern Iowa. I feel blessed for the opportunity to make a living writing stories in my new home.
At Patch, we promise always to report the facts as objectively as possible and otherwise adhere to the principles of good journalism. However, we also acknowledge that true impartiality is impossible because human beings have beliefs. So in the spirit of simple honesty, our policy is to encourage our editors to reveal their beliefs to the extent they feel comfortable. This disclosure is not a license for you to inject your beliefs into stories or to dictate coverage according to them. In fact, the intent is the opposite: we hope that the knowledge that your beliefs are on the record will cause you to be ever mindful to write, report and edit in a fair, balanced way. And if you ever see evidence that we failed in this mission, please let us know.
I'm not registered with any political party and that's because I don't have faith in parties. I like to consider myself a critical thinker so I try my best to analyze what's going on without applying partisan templates.
I'm not religious, but I have a certain admiration for many core values of various religions.
Local Hot-Button Issues
There's a lot of contention over what's to become of the uptown district right now. I imagine that conversation won't be over when the elections wrap up. Also, Marion is seeing a lot of growth and many of the larger issues will deal with how to best plan for that. That's growth both in the Linn-Mar School district, commercial growth tied to Tower Terrace Road, the west side of town and whatever construction happens uptown.
Right now, Marion is in the national spotlight due to the District 18 election. It will be interesting to see whether it will mean as much change as is reported.