Davidsonian Reunion

Thank you to all who joined current and former Davidsonian editors, staff writers, professors, and alumni Saturday, April 12, 2014 for the “Celebrating 100 years of The Davidsonian" event!

The Davidsonian Reunion took place in the Katherine and Tom Belk Visual Arts Center lobby and Semans Lecture Hall. The afternoon began with a panel discussion featuring five Davidson alumni in journalism; Caroline Que ’04, Rick Thurmond ’94, Ann Wicker ’77, Michael Kruse ’00, and Ike Bailey ’95. The day's events also included a career networking reception with current students, an all-alumni reception, and a keynote panel consisting of Davidson's 2013-2014 Batten Professors, David Boraks, founder and editor of Davidson News LLC; Rick Thames, editor and vice president of the Charlotte Observer; and Steve Weinberg, executive director of the international organization Investigative Reporters and Editors, magazine feature writer and editor, newspaper reporter, and author of eight books.

Davidson Alumni Bios

Caroline Que '04

Caroline Que (pronounced "kay") joined the Davidsonian staff in fall 2001. A week later, on Sept. 11, she wrote her first news story. She worked for the paper for three years and, between editions, majored in English with a concentration in gender studies. After Davidson, she received a master's in journalism from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

She began her career at The Washington Post, working as an editor first for the newspaper and then for the website. She later worked as the Washington editor for Yahoo! and as the chief content officer for Dyno Media, a startup company that focuses on business news. But newspapers were always her first love, and this year she became a staff editor at The New York Times.

She lives in Brooklyn with her partner, Megan Rossman, the director of video at Teach For America.

Rick Thurmond '94

An English major, Rick Thurmond interned at Charlotte Observer his senior year, then spent a year as a freelance sportswriter. In April 1995, he joined Charlotte magazine as part of a team relaunching the title from scratch. He served on the editorial staff for 18 years, 14 of them as editor. During his tenure, the magazine and its sister publications earned more than 60 regional and national awards for editorial excellence. Rick also wrote dozens of stories, including a profile of Bob McKillop. In January 2013, he was named publisher of the magazine and its sister titles.

He lives in Charlotte with his wife Ashley and three-year-old daughter Molly.

Ann Wicker '77

Writer and editor Ann Wicker was in the newspaper and magazine business for many years. A 1977 graduate of Davidson College, she also holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Queens University of Charlotte. Wicker edited Making Notes: Music of the Carolinas, an idea she took to Novello Festival Press. This nonfiction anthology features stories and essays about the rich legacy of music in North and South Carolina. The collection was a finalist in ForeWord magazine's annual contest for books from independent publishers. Wicker co-founded of the Weathers Creek Writers' Series, which for two years, offered one-day writing workshops in a log cabin in Cleveland, N.C.

In addition, she works with individual writers as an editor and coach. She has been a presenter at the South Carolina Book Festival, Carolina Writers' Night, and the Southern Festival of Books. Her work has appeared in Creative Loafing, SouthPark, Charlotte, Lake Norman Magazine and elsewhere. She is a member of Sisters in Crime and the North Carolina Writers' Network.

She is married to music producer and recording engineer Mark Williams.

Michael Kruse '00

Michael Kruse, the sports editor and then editor-in-chief of the Davidsonian before graduating in 2000, is a staff writer on the enterprise team at the Tampa Bay Times, the largest newspaper in the Southeast. He has won the Paul Hansell Award for Distinguished Achievement in Florida Journalism and the American Society of News Editors' award for distinguished nondeadline writing. His recent three-part series, The Last Voyage of the Bounty, was a finalist for ASNE's award for online storytelling, and his work was anthologized in the book Next Wave: America's New Generation of Great Literary Journalists.
He is also the author of Taking the Shot: The Davidson Basketball Moment and has written for ESPN's Grantland, Charlotte, Our State, Men's Health and Parade magazines, Harvard's Nieman Storyboard, and the Davidson Journal. He lives in St. Petersburg with his family.

Ike Bailey '95

Issac J. Bailey is a columnist and senior writer at The Sun News, where he has covered community news, real estate, manufacturing, race relations and politics. He arrived in 1997 after two years as a freelance reporter for the Charlotte Observer. His columns have been published by several dozen newspapers and Websites and been used in university courses. He has won numerous journalism awards, including being named the top columnist in South Carolina by the S.C. Press Association multiple times, and has been recognized by the National Society of Newspaper Columnists, The Casey Medal Awards and the National Association of Black Journalists.

He has spent the past year on a Nieman Fellowship at Harvard University where he has been exploring the intersection of heritage, literacy, the economy and football. He will be teaching a journalism course at Harvard this summer.

Bailey graduated from Davidson in 1995 with a B.S. in psychology. He was a columnist for The Davidsonian during his junior and senior years and was recently a vice president of the Davidson Alumni Association Board of Directors. He has been married for 15 years to Dr. Tracy Bailey, founder of the non-profit literacy program Freedom Readers, and is a father of two.

Batten Professor Bios

David Boraks

David Boraks is the founder and editor-in-chief of Davidson News LLC, a network of community news websites in the Lake Norman area. He's also a part-time announcer at Charlotte public radio station WFAE-FM. Last fall (Autumn 2013) he was the Batten Visiting Professor of Public Policy at Davidson. He holds an M.A. in liberal studies from Wesleyan University, Middletown, Conn., and a B.A. in history from Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y.

He is a lifelong journalist, and has been interviewing national and local politicians, entertainers and artists, corporate CEOs and regular folks for more than 35 years. His work has appeared in newspapers, magazines and on the radio in the U.S. and abroad. He has worked for the daily American Banker in New York, for the online news service LocalBusiness.com, the Charlotte Observer, Hartford Courant in Connecticut, and The China News in Taipei, as well as other newspapers in Massachusetts and Connecticut. 

He is a past winner of Davidson College's Algernon Sydney Sullivan Community Service Award, and is married to Shelley Rigger, the Brown Professor of East Asian Studies at Davidson College. 

Steve Weinberg

Steve Weinberg left his home in Columbia, Mo. the first week of January to spend this semester at Davidson College as a Batten professor, continuing a long tradition at Davidson. He graduated from the University of Missouri Journalism School in 1970, laboring eight years as a salaried newspaper reporter and magazine staff writer before launching a full-time freelance writing career in 1978. He is the author of eight books, with an emphasis on biographies and investigative reporting. His current book in progress is a biography of Garry Trudeau, creator of Doonesbury.

In addition to his full-time writing, He has taught journalism classes at the University of Missouri, plus served as executive director of a journalism membership group named Investigative Reporters & Editors — I.R.E. in the short version. At Davidson this term, he is teaching a course about the craft of biography and a course about the flawed criminal justice system across the USA. His wife Scherrie Goettsch (pronounced "Getch") has spent most of the semester exploring Davidson and other parts of North Carolina. She is an interior designer and painter, and in the past worked four years as a newspaper editor. They are the parents of two grown children, both residing in Oxford, Miss.— one of whom is a magazine editor and the other a restaurant professional.

Rick Thames

Rick Thames is the executive editor of the Charlotte Observer and CharlotteObserver.com. With more than 150 journalists and correspondents, The Observer is the largest news-gathering organization in the Carolinas. Each month, the newspaper and its website reach more than one million readers in our region. This year, Observer journalists were honored with 36 awards from the North Carolina Press Association — the most of any large newspaper in the state for the sixth consecutive year. In 2013, The Observer and the News & Observer of Raleigh, were jointly awarded the grand prize in the Robert F. Kennedy Book and Journalism Awards. The award honored the papers' examination of the finances of nonprofit hospitals, which often act as for-profit businesses. The series was also a finalist for a 2013 Pulitzer Prize. As editor, Thames has led the Observer's transition to become a digital newsroom. Reporters and editors first post all news to the web, mobile and social media. That news then flows into its two print editions. Observer writers maintain 40 blogs and more than 75 Twitter accounts. They also have Facebook pages for major news topics.

This semester Thames brought those experiences into the classroom as a James K. Batten Visiting Professor in Public Policy. He is teaching a course on the impact that social media is having on society, particularly on culture, media, business, politics and armed conflicts.

A native of Laurinburg, N.C., Thames earned an English degree from Pfeiffer University and a master's degree in communication from the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. He and his wife, Debbie, have two grown children and a third who is now a high school junior.