OUR Penola Pennant journalist Katie Jackson is no stranger to the media industry.
Much of her teenage years were spent around local newspapers as father Trevor Jackson– The Border Watch sports editor – worked in the industry during her formative years.
While in high school, Katie enjoyed socialising with peers thanks to her outgoing personality and excelled with her English work, but combining the two for a career in journalism never crossed her mind.
Instead, Katie spent five years working in different industries before taking the leap into media.
Katie start working part-time in the sports department with her father in mid-2015, compiling scores and processing supplied items for The Border Watch.
After almost a year working behind the scenes, Katie was offered a cadetship in the news department from former editor Jason Wallace.
“At the time I was still only working part time and had never actually written a real article,” she said.
“One day Jason asked me if I could go out to a story as everyone else was busy, so I just did it.
“When I got back to the office, I wrote up the article with the help of dad and submitted it to Jason.
“It turned out that he ended up using my story for the next day’s front page lead – I’m just glad he didn’t tell me that beforehand otherwise I might have been a bit more nervous.”
Not too long after that, Katie was given a full-time position and has not looked back.
Mostly working on The Penola Pennant, Katie spends a lot of her time travelling to and from Penola and Coonawarra in search of the next big story.
As her dad is the resident camera guru around our office, she has a little more help in the photography department than most, but does not see this as too much of an advantage.
“Dad definitely helps me out a lot with my photos but he’s also not afraid to tell me when they’re not that great,” she joked.
“Most of the time he’ll tell me how he could’ve done it or how I could’ve made it a little better, it’s mostly constructive criticism but sometimes I’m sure he just likes to annoy me.”
A local born girl, Katie moved away as an infant and only returned to the Blue Lake city five years ago.
In this time she has immersed herself in country life, taking every opportunity to explore the region.
“I grew up in Coffs Harbour and Albury and spent a bit of time living in Melbourne,” she said.
“Mount Gambier is definitely a change of pace for me.
“But I love it, I’ve made some really great friends here and enjoy driving up to Robe or heading to one of the region’s walking trails whenever I can.
“There’s so much on offer if you just go looking for it.”