Welcome to Around the Meadows! We’ve created this blog as another way to communicate with friends old and new; whether you’re a longstanding member of our Waiting List or a web surfer finding us for the first time, we want to welcome you and invite you to learn more about all that Carolina Meadows has to offer.
By way of introduction to newcomers, Carolina Meadows is a continuing-care retirement community in beautiful Chapel Hill, N.C. Our residents come from all over and have diverse backgrounds and interests. With its laid-back atmosphere, plentiful amenities, diverse resident population and top-notch dining, Carolina Meadows is uniquely positioned as one of the leading retirement communities in the Southeast. Another differentiating factor is our Equity Advantage plan, which provides that if you leave the community for any reason, we return your entry fee and share in any appreciation. More on that in another post!
I’d also like to introduce myself and the rest of our blogging team: I’m Lisa Wynne, Vice President of Marketing. I’ll be posting here along with other staff members, including Director of Social Accountability Katie Huffman, Marketing Associate Phil DeSantis, Activities Director Kris Snyder and others. We plan to use this space to keep you up-to-date with items of interest about Carolina Meadows, including updates on our upcoming expansion , community outreach and more. In addition, please visit the News section of our web site to read press releases and the many interesting articles written by members of our resident PR Committee.
If you have any questions about Carolina Meadows or would like to learn more, please call me anytime at 800-458-6756, or email me.
To kick off our blog, I’m delighted to feature a commentary by resident Paul Hardin. Mr. Hardin has had a distinguished career in law and higher education, including serving as chancellor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He also is a new member of our PR Committee, a group of gifted residents who assist me with writing news articles for our web site, event planning and other activities that help educate the community about Carolina Meadows.
by Paul Hardin
Barbara and I are fairly new residents of Carolina Meadows, and I am a brand new member of Rita Borden’s Public Relations Committee. My first assignment by the committee was to attend and write a report on the April Men’s Breakfast. I haven’t missed a Men’s Breakfast in my short time here, so that was a welcome assignment. It turned out to be, as usual, both lively and informative.
Dud Waldner announced that the breakfast buffet was open and gave us such a warm, friendly welcome that we would surely have responded with a standing ovation, except that (1) we always get a great breakfast, (2) Dud always makes warm, friendly comments, and (3) standing ovations are pretty taxing at our age. But I digress, as the saying goes.
After we ate, Dud called on Milton Hamilton to introduce the speaker, who happened to be Milton’s own distinguished son, Professor James Hamilton of Duke University. That decision may strike the reader as chauvinistic, but the choice of speaker turned out to be a 10 strike! (If my own son were not also exceptional and beyond college age, I would enroll him back at Duke with urgent entreaties to take a course from Hamilton). More seriously, James Hamilton was a Harvard double major in Economics and Government, has taught there and served as a Visiting Professor at Stanford, and teaches courses and administers programs at Duke that cover a wide range of disciplines that impinge in one way or another on journalism.
Therefore, what we heard this morning was a brilliant exposition on the current state and likely future trends of journalism in the USA. Oversimplifying, the future of journalism is promising (has a strong audience) when its subjects are business trends, sports, or scandals that breed investigative reporting and big stories, and is less promising when its subjects are public affairs that are not supported by ordinary readership (unless they ARE supported by media families or non-profits who subsidize reporting because of their own avid interest in certain kinds of news. Think Pope Foundation in Raleigh?) Professor Hamilton mentioned strong News and Observer sales when investigative reporting yields big stories, but pointed out that such stories are so expensive to report that The N&O can only do two per year, whereas, news giants like the New York Times have many reporters and the power to generate lots of such stories. The title of Professor Hamilton’s recently published book is ALL THE NEWS THAT’S FIT TO SELL.
Here’s an interesting aside. Professor Hamilton asked how many of us read printed newspapers and showed strong surprise when almost all hands went up. He recovered his equilibrium by noticing our age. Later he asked how many of us read newspapers on the internet and got relatively few raised hands. He probably was reminded strongly in those two moments that discussing journalism with bright, educated college-age constituents is different from discussing journalism with bright, educated elders.
Speculation abounds about the future and direction of journalism. Professor Hamilton foresees neither general success nor straight-line decline. Many factors, some obvious and others more subtle, determine whether need or appetite for certain types of information is matched by the ability of the media to produce that information in those markets. Professor Hamilton understands those factors and amply demonstrated his ability to cover a great deal of ground in a single breakfast speech. However, this is an intricate field of study, and I for one came away from breakfast impressed by the speaker and fully resolved to read his book. I’d call that a