JACK LORD COOKSEY
Pleased to meet you. Come on in.
WRITER | EDITOR
Published stories, mostly long form
My journalism career began in the mid-1990s when newspapers were already beginning to transform.
The digital frontier seemed a long way off, yet I stayed the course with countless others into print media.
Formats and tools have changed drastically since the emergence of online media, but principles remain.
Ethics matter, writing matters and story still matters, despite the tendency to compress narratives down
to tiny bites for quick, easy consumption. Much of my writing here is built for audiences who understand
that the narrative is necessary if we care to gain true understanding of people and our world.
FEATURE: THE LONG GAME
In the summer of 2019, I spent several weeks with the Richmond Kickers pro soccer club as the team entered its updated iteration — new ownership, a new coach, new roster and a thorough business overhaul.
FEATURE PROFILE: JAMES LANE
I spent a day-plus with the 25th state superintendent of public instruction, the person who oversees Virginia's K-12 schools. He was a truly engaging man to follow.
Update: This story won first place in Public Affairs Writing and a Best in Show from the Virginia Press Association in April 2019.
FEATURE: GROCERY WARS
In the months before the home-grown food retailer Ukrop's handed over its storied family business to a huge global grocery company, I offered this in-depth exploration of the market and cultural forces that ultimately led to its eclipse as the market leader, and then the company's sale.
THE RAINMAKER OF FAIRFAX: GERALD GORDON
As Amazon narrowed down its possible locations for a new East Coast headquarters, Gerald Gordon was largely the person responsible for Northern Virginia's ascendency as one of the top prospects.
THE BIG HEART AND SOUL OF A SMALL CITY: FREDERICKSBURG
This story serves as my love letter to a Virginia town that holds a lot of magic and spirit. Here is a look at its struggle to keep the ingredients that make it special as it undergoes a boom.
RUNNING AND ROLLING
A general-purpose magazine writer compiles copious digests in the name of service-journalism. This is one example of countless briefs packages I've done over the years.
Q&A: FRANKIE ANDREU
At Richmond Magazine, I managed content from concept to the layout plan. This was the back-page Q&A I had with one of Lance Armstrong's ex-teammates. The intro is mine, as are the questions.
TRAVEL FEATURE: MOUNTAIN LAKE LODGE
My time on a magazine staff introduced me to every manner of reporting, including this piece about my visit to Mountain Lake Lodge in Pembroke, Virginia.
EXPLODED CAPTION: NASCAR PREVIEW
The RichMag book opener was a feature photo with a long caption, called Focus. It was my job to plan these with the art director and, usually, to write the copy with the image, as I did here. It was always a lot of work for a short amount of copy, yet the focus was to open the book with something timely and relevant.
NEWS SHORT: URBAN YOUTH PROGRAM
The boundary between editor and writer is blurry, especially at a publication with a limited staff. News items like this usually required much effort to fill only one-half to two-thirds of a page.