Sometimes you have to make changes

Published 3:34 am Saturday, April 12, 2003

By By Paul Keane
I never really planned it this way, but sometimes you have to make some changes. Effective last Friday, I have left The Atmore Advance as publisher.
This decision has been gnawing at me for at least two months, and it's caused quite a bit of turmoil between my wife, Doris, and I.
I've waffled back and forth and back and forth on this one and finally came to a decision this past week.
Just to get it out of the way, I'm branching out on my own with a book publishing company, editing, laying out, designing and marketing heritage/genealogy books and other products.
It's both exciting and scary at the same time.
The reason for the decision is simple, and it comes with four names – Doris, Chris, Kelly and Steven. In order, that's my wife, my oldest son, my only daughter and my youngest son.
About two weeks ago, I had an eye-opening experience, an epiphany if you will.
I discovered that my children and wife had a life and that I was not always a factor in that life.
After much thought and introspection, it occurred to me that over the past 15 years I had chased a newspaper career and just expected them to tag along.
Nearly every time, they tagged along with style and grace, never complaining when I couldn't make it to an event or couldn't do something with or for them because I was busy putting out a newspaper.
The final nail in my decision was really made Tuesday night when I had to miss a big part of my youngest son's tee-ball game because we were having some problems getting Wednesday's issue out on time.
That told me that I really needed to make a change.
But, it still wasn't an easy decision. The main reason is because of this community.
I still believe in all my heart that Atmore has great potential and will one day realize that.
In the short time I've been with this paper, I've encountered some wonderful people. People on the City Council, in the Mayor's Office, with the Chamber of Commerce, in Leadership Atmore, with the Poarch Creek Indian Tribe, in the business community, at church and at various civic functions have all left indelible footprints in the sand that is my life.
I don't mention anyone by name out of fear of leaving someone out, but rest assured that each and every one of you have made an impression with me that will not quickly go away. For that, I thank you and offer my eternal gratitude.
Where will this new path in my life lead me? Right now, I really don't know. We will be staying in the area, but time will tell where we may head in the future.
Hopefully, sometime in that future, our paths will cross again and I can thank you in person.
Paul Keane is the former Publisher of the Atmore Advance.

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