Hometown: Owensboro, KY
Birthday: November 1
Bio: Ryan Smith has been getting paid to write great stories for almost a decade, but his involvement with journalism goes back even further. With a career newspaperman for a father, Ryan grew up in a family that cared passionately for community news.
He entered the Army as a journalist and was assigned to the XVIII Airborne Corps at Fort Bragg, N.C. As both a soldier and later a civilian, Ryan wrote for the Fort Bragg Paraglide, ending his tenure as its editor. He went on to work at daily and weekly civilian newspapers in Kentucky and Florida before joining the Patch family.
Ryan is the recipient of three Keith L. Ware Awards for Army journalism and two Florida Press Association Awards for commentary.
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 to inject our beliefs into stories or to dictate coverage according to them. In fact, the intent is the opposite: we hope that the knowledge that our beliefs are on the record will cause us 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.
How would you describe your political beliefs?
I try to vote for people rather than party, especially in local elections where you can really get to know the candidates.
Are you registered with a certain party?
I am registered Democrat.
Local Hot-Button Issues
What do you think are the most important issues facing the community?
Military communities deal with issues that other communities never have to face -- length of deployments, the absence of loved ones for extended periods of time, the economic impact of thousands of soldiers going overseas for a year.