In 2004, I created KentCountyStar as the first online-only news publication in the Grand Rapids, MI area, covering local public affairs and small business news. The original design looked a bit like The Drudge Report and was coded in HTML with the FrontPage editing software. I upgraded to using a template service that was set up for news organizations. However, the design was counterintuitive and the template company charged too much for minor changes, so I shelved the project for awhile. In 2007, I discovered WordPress and revived KentCountyStar. In 2016, I renamed it to metroGRnews to better reflect community identity. The site is offline,Read More →

The best plants for attracting butterflies to your yard:AngelicaAsterBaptisia  – host plant for the Wild Indigo Duskywing butterfly.Black-Eyed SusanBee BalmButterfly Bush (Buddleia)Butterfly Flower (Asclepias)CoreopsisConeflowerDaisyDillEupatoriums FennelGoldenrodLantanaLiatris (Blazing Star)Lupine – Host plant for Karner Blue butterflyMilkweed – host plant for Monarch butterflyMint family: Agastache, Lavender, Rosemary, Calamintha, Pycnanthemum PhloxQueen Anne’s LaceSalviaStokesiaSunflowerVerbenaVernoniaYarrow The best plants for attracting hummingbirds to your yard:Bee BalmDaylilyLarkspurSageFoxgloveHoneysuckleWeigelaGiant HyssopPhloxLantanasLupineYarrowFuschiaCatnipsRhododendronRead More →

As I was going through task management apps, looking for something to provide a checklist of routine events, it occurred to me that task management is good, but does not necessarily get me any closer to achieving my goals. The tasks I’ve been organizing are chores, budgeting, and other events. To a degree, they might get me closer to my goals, but in a haphazard manner. I wanted something to be more directly organized toward my goals, so I have searched around for some tools to achieve this. Here’s what I’ve found so far: GoalScape What I like about this app is the visual interfaceRead More →

In 2010, WikiLeaks released a 2007 video from the gun camera of a U.S. attack helicopter, that depicted the killing of a dozen people and that November began releasing 250,000 classified diplomatic cables between the U.S. State Department and its embassies and consulates around the world. President Obama called Wikileaks a national threat. Politicians, including Obama pushed for the prosecution of Assange and any journalists or government insiders who had collaborated with WikiLeaks. After reading through my paper now before posting it here now, I think to myself about the impact WikiLeaks has had since then on journalism and on politicians. Here is my originalRead More →

This week I got an invitation to set up an interview for a job with an online tool called The website asked for my name and email address and to confirm that I am not a robot. After I confirmed the appointment, I was presented with the options to add the appointment to Google Calendar or Microsoft Office Calendar. I really like this tool. It takes ‘phone tag’ out of the equation in setting up appointments, and it requires the applicant to follow through with setting up the appointment. In addition to setting up interviews, it can be used to set up appointments withRead More →

Olivet College, THE ECHOThe Echo, Olivet College’s newspaper, I started out as a Guest Writer and eventually was promoted to Staff Writer. My byline sometimes is JD Sullivan, other times is Jim Sullivan.Skills: Interviewing, Researching, Reporting, Media Ethics, Investigative Reporting, Meeting Deadlines INVOLVEMENT IN STUDENT GROUPS OFFERS UNIQUE BENEFITS, OPPORTUNITIESOne of my strengths as a reporter is curiosity. As a new student to Olivet College, I was curious about the sorts of activities available to students which led to the first article I wrote for The Echo. Mu Omega Pi Members Being Asked to MoveThis is an investigative journalism piece I wrote for my collegeRead More →