I am fortunate. I've spent most of my professional life in a state that I love.
In 1980, I began my career "across the street" reporting for KSL radio and television. I took a few detours to South Texas, then Wichita and finally Kansas City before returning in 1993 to Utah and ABC 4.
It sounds funny, but in coming back I have seen the world.
I've covered stories for and about Utahns in Argentina, Chile and Guatemala. (Yes, I speak Spanish.)
I was onboard an Air Force C-5 on a humanitarian mission from Utah to the former Soviet Republic of Georgia. In the jet's massive cargo hold was an old Salt Lake fire truck and other fire equipment desperately needed in the capital of Tbilisi.
On boats in the English Channel over two consecutive summers, I watched as a pair of Salt Lake brothers swam from Dover to a beach south of Calais, France. They were first Utahns to conquer those famous and treacherous waters.
During our "Olympic moment" I pursued stories in Calgary and California, and even spent a month reporting from Sydney, Australia for the 2000 Summer Olympics. I chased the Salt Lake Olympic torch from Athens to Atlanta and Alaska and then on it's final run through Utah.
Along the way I've gotten some awards for my work. An Emmy here, a Press Club award there. They've all been great, but they are not the reason I do what I do.
I want to make a positive contribution to my community.
Now, don't gag. I really am something of a "Pollyanna." My desire has been the same in every city where I have worked along the way.
It's just more so here because "here" is home.
My great-great grandfather, Abraham Hunsaker, had the same idea when he came to this place in 1848. A veteran of the Mormon Battalion, he spent some time around present-day Lehi before settling in Box Elder County.
Back in Nauvoo, Illinois, Abraham ran a saw mill and orchard along the Mississippi River. No such river here, so he took up dry land farming (read: farming without irrigation) and was among the first in the territory to make a go of it.
Abraham witnessed the driving of the golden spike at Promontory (he's on the front row of that famous picture) and served on the Brigham City council.
He built and he served.
I aspire to add some small measure to Abraham's legacy.
And I want to have fun doing it.