The Rapidian

Steven Davison honored as Rapidian Reporter of the Quarter

Rapidian reporter Steven Davison discusses his involvement with The Rapidian, what he enjoys about being a reporter and what opportunities he sees for others on The Rapidian.
Steven Davison is The Rapidian Reporter of the Quarter

Steven Davison is The Rapidian Reporter of the Quarter /Renato Delos Reyes

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Steven Davison is an active member in both the politics and music beat at The Rapidian and has published six articles ranging in topics from band and album reviews to political issues such as DecriminalizeGR. To say he has been an active member of the Rapidian community over the last few months is an understatement.

In recognition of his dedication to providing quality citizen journalism, prolific publishing of articles and unwavering support, The Rapidian is proud to award Steven Davison as the Rapidian Reporter of the Quarter for the fourth quarter of 2012.

Davison hasn’t always been an active member of the Grand Rapids community. Although he grew up in Grand Rapids, Davison decided to stay in Kalamazoo after graduating with his Bachelor’s degree in English from Western Michigan University.

“When I left Grand Rapids, it seemed like anywhere was better than here,” says Davison. “Coming back in 2008, it was a pleasant surprise to see just how much has changed and how much opportunity there is for engaging in the community.”

Davison points to The Rapidian as one of those opportunities to engage the community.

“I think it was a good way for me to get out of my shell a little bit and start to see what was going on in Grand Rapids,” says Davison.

While working as a freelance writer for the Kalamazoo Gazette, the stories he enjoyed the most were the community profile pieces. Compared to writing for The Rapidian, the main difference in writing for the Gazette was that there were more constraints. Davison believes that writing for The Rapidian allows writers and reporters to find their own voice and writing style. It allows for the author’s character and voice to shine through.

“I think every article I have done has been fun in some way,” says Davison. “Sitting down and talking to someone I’ve never met before and then you gather all that information and it’s kind of like a puzzle that you put together.”

Davison believes that writing for The Rapidian has helped to expand his own interests and horizons as well as providing him some unique opportunities, specifically in the political sphere.

His own articles on DecriminalizeGR stemmed from his desire for in depth coverage of political issues in Grand Rapids. Reporting on issues that one finds important is the basis of citizen journalism and The Rapidian’s mission of building community through engagement. Davison was bothered by the lack of coverage on DecriminalizeGR, so he decided to write an article about it.

Davison would love to see more investigative journalism on local political issues and more angry voices. He believes that The Rapidian is the perfect platform for these kinds of issues.

“There is so much to be fed up about,” says Davison. “Channel some of that concern or disenfranchisement into something positive.”

While writing for The Rapidian, Davison has been thankful for the constant encouragement and positive feedback on his articles that he has received from the Rapidian community. He has also valued the feedback he has received from his mentor and the Rapidian staff.

“I always want someone to take a look at [my writing], says Davison. “You think you’ve proof-read it and then someone else reads it and there is all kinds of problems.”

Davison remembers publishing his first article with The Rapidian and the sense of accomplishment that came with it.

“[My friend Darrin Doyle] was doing a reading at Bar Divani and I wanted to do a promo piece,” says Davison. “I don't know if it made a bit of difference at the time, but it was good just to say ‘Oh I did it, I can do this.’” 

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