At Leawood Lifestyle, we strive to bring our readers community-focused content month after month. Our local freelance writers are an integral part of our team. Here are a few of the talented individuals who contributed to our June issue.
His Twitter bio calls him an “outnumbered father of two redheads” – daughters who somehow keep him even busier when he’s off the clock as news editor for The Associated Press’ Kansas City bureau. A Lee’s Summit resident since 2005, Chris leads a team of text and visual journalists covering breaking news and enterprise journalism across Missouri and Kansas. Before coming to Lee’s Summit, Chris was AP’s news editor in Salt Lake City, where he split his time directing the news and roaming Utah’s numerous wilderness paths. He brought his love of trail running home to Missouri, and spring weekends will find him roaming at the James A. Reed wildlife area with his wife, Laurel, and daughters Aidan and Raegan, 13 and 11.
Almost every morning, as I walk my neighborhood with our dog Pete, I see my daughter driving her kids to school or my son or daughter-in-law hauling their children. We are blessed beyond words to have our family so close.
I work from home as a freelance writer and photographer, and I have everything that I love within a 1.5-mile circle. I snap iPhone photos of beautiful ponds or autumn leaves.
Our neighbors are friends and our friends are neighbors whose warmth and welcome provide an anchor for everyday living. Leawood is large, but its feeling is intimate.
I’m a junior at Blue Valley North High School and have lived in Leawood most of my 16 years. I enjoy studying history, traveling, and learning new languages. I also love music and am rarely found without my earbuds close by. When I’m not in school, I am playing club lacrosse, working part-time, volunteering through National Charity League, and trying to keep my two brothers in line, which is no easy task.
I am blessed. What 17 year old gets to take photographs for a magazine? This has been an amazing opportunity and I am glad to work with such wonderful people. I love photography, the creativity of it and the math and science behind it. Next to watching Star Wars, I’d rather spend my Friday evenings shooting an assignment or fill Sunday afternoon finding unique places around Kansas City to photograph with my friends. (I’d rather be behind the lens…) My desire is to use photography to change people’s lives, to make a difference in the world, to bring to people’s attention things they might not see ordinarily.
With roots firmly planted in Kansas City, my career as “Mr. Stinky Feet” has allowed me to perform thousands of shows throughout North America and Europe, and twice on The White House lawn. Long ago I worked as a journalist and corporate public relations professional before taking the leap into a “real” job helping children laugh. I also entertain grown-up kids as a freelance writer and public speaker. Through my work with children and as a father of two daughters, I have learned that kids have much to teach adults about living life to the fullest.