The BEAT’S Chief Investigative Reporter
John began his writing career at the tender age of 6 when he won an award for an essay he published in the local paper of his hometown of Reno, Nevada. The essay titled, “Why I want to runaway” was ultimately nominated for a state-wide award.
At 16 years of age, he stuck out his thumb and soon found himself on a cross country adventure that would take him into several southern states. He spent the fall following his 17th birthday in Nashville, TN panhandling, while strumming his old acoustic guitar for tips.
Eventually he found steady part-time work as a fill in guitarist at several mom and pop recording studios. In his spare time, he was writing music reviews in a local entertainment magazine under the pen name of Buck Ritter.
His writing abilities helped him bring in more cash by submitting freelance articles to other area newspapers, all while attending night school. Six years after landing in Nashville, John left with a B.S. in Communications to take a job as a radio announcer in Tulsa, OK.
While living in Tulsa, he continued his freelance writing and ended up selling an undercover piece to the Tulsa World for several thousand dollars. The story concerning police corruption in nearby Broken Arrow also won him an award in investigative journalism.
In early 2014 John moved to southwest Missouri and became The BEAT’S Chief Investigative Reporter. John’s spring of 2014 stories on bullying brought him quite a bit of recognition as a fearless journalist.