Laura Houser
Email: Laura.Houser@patch.com Phone: 248-534-9780
Bio: I am not originally a Michigander. I grew up in Cincinnati, and went to Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. I went to college with the intention of being an English major; ever since I was old enough to go to school, I wanted to be a writer.  At orientation, I decided to double major in Journalism, seeing the profession as a way to write full time.  I didn't care what medium it was, as long as I could work with words. At Miami, I started working for the student newspaper, The Miami Student.  During my three years on staff, I was a writer, a section editor, and then finally, the News Editor.  As part of the position, I was the senior copy editor, managed the newsroom, and made sure everyone followed their deadlines (they didn't).  It was a tedious, unglamorous job, but I loved it.  I loved journalism and reporting for the same reason I wanted to be a writer in first grade: I love telling stories. Online and in the hyper-local market, the potential for storytelling is even greater. I moved to Birmingham, MI, with my fiancé at the beginning of July 2010.  And so, I'm not originally a Michigander, nor is Birmingham my hometown.  But I'm ready to find my place in this community, and excited to tell its stories. Your Beliefs At Patch, we promise always to report the facts as objectively as possible and otherwise adhere to the principles of good journalism. However, we also acknowledge that true impartiality is impossible because human beings have beliefs. So in the spirit of simple honesty, our policy is to encourage our editors to reveal their beliefs to the extent they feel comfortable. This disclosure is not a license for you to inject your beliefs into stories or to dictate coverage according to them. In fact, the intent is the opposite: we hope that the knowledge that your beliefs are on the record will cause you to be ever mindful to write, report and edit in a fair, balanced way. And if you ever see evidence that we failed in this mission, please let us know. Politics How would you describe your political beliefs? Are you registered with a certain party? I am not registered with any political parties, largely because I believe most party politics are driven by special interests and deep pockets, rather than than what's good for voters. I would consider myself to be fiscally conservative and socially liberal, but since social issues are far more important to me, I call myself liberal. Religion How religious would you consider yourself? (casual, observant, devout, non religious) I've spent years mulling over the intellectual, philosophical and faith-based ramifications of religion, and I can't say I've reached many conclusions.  However, I believe in faith, and take comfort from the assumption that there is a higher power.  And so while my parents raised me in the Baptist church, I now choose to pursue faith on my own terms. Local Hot-Button Issues What do you think are the most important issues facing the community? Where do you stand on each of these issues? Because of the relative wealth of Birmingham's residents, many believe the city isn't affected by the problems plaguing the state of Michigan.  They are.  Continued budget cuts across city departments deserve the attention of Birmingham residents, as well as the state of property values and the housing market.
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