LANSING: A tribute to local journalism, journalists

LETTER from ROGER LANSING

A tribute to local journalism, journalists

Editor’s Note: This speech was given Friday, June 25, to honor Editor Greg Klein at the 2020-2021 Cooperstown Central School Athletic Awards Banquet.

In the fall of 2005, the Cooperstown community lost a piece of its soul with the unexpected passing of Ken Kiser.

Kenny was a devoted husband and dad, a man who thought the best of each person he met, enjoying the beauty in life, every minute of every day.

In honor of his legacy, the Cooperstown Sports Booster Club annually presents the Ken Kiser Award for Good Sportsmanship.

Past recipients of this award represent a broad spectrum of support and commitment to the athletes and athletic programs in Cooperstown. This impressive list of alums shares many of the same qualities as tonight’s recipient; kindness, dedication and an unwavering devotion to the student athlete.

This year, the award recognizes a single individual who has made a point of showing Cooperstown, and our student athletes in particular, to others through the power of the written word. I would like to invite Greg Klein to the stage as the 2021 recipient of the Ken Kiser Award for Good Sportsmanship.

Greg has served as a member of the Sports Booster Club, as a volunteer for many community and sporting events over the years, and is a dedicated member of the greater Cooperstown community. However, we’re pretty sure that it is more likely that you recognize his name from the bylines on many articles in our local paper. Greg Klein has been there to recap all of our athletic journeys with the eloquent stroke of his pen. In a world where small local newspapers are becoming more and more rare, Greg’s dedication to covering the stories that are important to our community is commendable.

On a personal note, I recall a rather involved conversation that I had with Greg six or seven years ago while standing on the sidelines at Doubleday Field. We were talking about the importance of local news to local residents and since we were both veterans of local news, we were commiserating about the fact that “local” was getting lost in the continued consolidation of media into larger and larger corporations. Greg’s passion for his local community came through in our conversation that day, and has shone continually in his writings since. He has written about our student athletes’, and our community’s, accomplishments, and he has written about the times when we have fallen short, and through it all he has used his keen eye to capture those moments and put them into words.

For his dedication, his understanding that a school and its athletic programs create a bond around which a community can thrive, for his friendship and service to the Cooperstown Athletic Program and the Sports Booster Club, we proudly present the 2021 Ken Kiser Award for Good Sportsmanship to Greg Klein.


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