If my byline seems familiar, you might remember some of the stories I wrote as a sports reporter for the Forsyth County News between 2006-2011. I’m a long way from North Georgia these days, working as a school psychologist with high school students in Los Angeles. The two jobs are very different in some ways, but one constant between high school football stadiums in Forsyth County and special education meetings in L.A. is that I’ve been able to spend a lot of time interacting with young people as they navigate high-pressure, anxiety-filled situations.
One thing I always emphasize to worried teenagers is the value of dependable information. Is that rumor about your best friend really true? Investigate it. Go to the source. Find trustworthy sources of information. Spend less time on social media. (I repeat this one a lot.) Reliable information is crucial in understanding the world, and working out your own plans for how to deal with it.
When it comes to staying informed about your community, I firmly believe that there’s no substitute for reliable journalism, and local newspapers are an indispensable part of that equation. Atlanta-based reporting can only tell you so much about your own hometown. It takes dedicated reporters and editors working local beats to tell you what’s happening in Forsyth County with a level of detail you won’t find anywhere else. I can say from experience that nobody provides the kind of dedicated local sports coverage that Forsyth County News produces each week, and that’s just a small piece of the valuable community-based reporting readers rely on FCN for.
As COVID-19 has thrown so much into question about our public health, economy and society, this kind of reporting is even more vital. Forsyth County has continued to grow since I was reporting on rec league basketball tournaments. I went back for a visit a few years ago and marveled at the new businesses in and around downtown Cumming. A growing community needs a source of reliable journalism more than ever. Forsyth County News has been there for you year after year. Can you take a minute and think how you can be there for them now? Subscribe, advertise, consider a donation if you can. I know it’s hard times for everyone right now. Imagine how much harder it would be without this particular source of reliable information.
BJ Corbitt was a sports reporter for the Forsyth County News between 2006-2011. Today, he works as a school psychologist with high school students in Los Angeles.