For about the first six months I worked at MinnPost, a curious thing seemed to happen whenever I talked to someone about the place, whether it was a friend, a writer or a source.
Even before I could launch into my pitch about MinnPost, the other person would invariably say, “Yeah, that Beth Hawkins is great.”
I couldn’t agree more, and not just because Beth’s education coverage made her a must-read for anyone who cared about the issue in Minnesota. You couldn’t ask for a better colleague.
All of which is why I really hate writing these words: Beth Hawkins is leaving MinnPost. She has decided to take a position with Education Post, a year-old nonprofit based in Chicago whose aim is to foster constructive conversations about public education.
I’ll leave it to Beth to explain exactly what she’s up to next, but I’m happy to talk about what she’s meant to MinnPost over the last seven-plus years. Whether it was shining a light on little-known success stories or holding public officials accountable, the thoughtfulness, tenacity and fairness she brought to the beat didn’t just win over readers; it became a model for other MinnPost reporters. The fact that her prodigious abilities as a writer and a storyteller tended to get overshadowed by her mastery of her beat just goes to show how trusted she was.
Lucky for us, her departure from the MinnPost staff doesn’t mean she’ll be totally absent from the site. She’ll still be writing stories from time to time as a contributor, and you can keep up with her via twitter at @beth_hawkins.