• My predecessor, friend and hero, Sarah Sue Ingram

    Forgive me this week, readers. I’m feeling a little lost and a lot heartbroken.

    I think it’s always that way when you lose a member of your family, and we at the Beacon have lost one of the dearest members of ours.

    Sarah Sue Ingram, who kept our newsroom running smoothly until I got here, died Monday morning of complications from lung cancer.

    If you learn nothing else about Sarah Sue from my column, you need to know if she could have beaten it, she would have. She promised to fight and she was absolutely a woman of her word.

  • We all must be better examples for county’s children

    By Ken Proctor

    Guest Columnist

    I have had the privilege to spend the past several months working with our Brunswick County Schools students, both inside and outside the school system, and with the school staff members. I have worked with children from the first grade through the 12th grade. I also have experience employing Brunswick County students for more than 25 years.

  • Rural counts when it comes to voting about Connect NC

    By Patrick Woodie

    Guest Columnist

    Rural North Carolinians will have the chance March 15 to vote on the Connect NC bond referendum to invest $2 billion in improvements to our university system, community colleges, small town water and sewer infrastructure, agricultural research facilities, state parks and National Guard facilities.

  • On Campus at Brunswick Community College: Linking our students with support services

    By Dr. Susanne Adams

    Guest Columnist

    Recently, I ran across a quotation by Phil Jackson, American professional basketball executive, former coach and former player serving as president of the New York Knicks in the National Basketball Association (NBA.)

    Jackson shared, “The strength of the team is each individual member. The strength of each member is the team.”

  • The utmost importance of ‘Spotlight’

    My friend, Fran Salone-Pelletier, has already written in the Beacon this year about “Spotlight,” which two weekends ago was dubbed Best Picture in this year’s Academy Awards, but now I want to offer my perspective.

  • The cat got out of the bag

    Brunswick County made news last week when the economic development director it spent three months searching for resigned just short of four months into the job.

    The reports put the reason for his resignation resulting from inadvertently putting the county’s response to an information request from a tire manufacturer looking for a new plant location in public emails.

    Emails to and from elected officials and county staff are public record and the county set up a computer terminal in 2009 for the public to review the emails.

  • Tips for getting your taxes done safely

    By Roy Cooper

    Guest Columnist

    The tax deadline is looming, and you may find yourself needing help to file your taxes. Using a tax preparer should make filing your taxes easier, but only if you choose one that is reliable and accurate.

    There are plenty of legitimate tax preparers in North Carolinians, but unfortunately my office hears from consumers each year about tax preparers who charge unreasonably high fees, file tax documents without approval or fail to complete the job.

  • You decide: Was change greater a century ago?

    By Dr. Mike Walden

    Guest Columnist

    Consider this picture: Your home has no electricity or indoor plumbing. This means no electronics or instant warm baths and showers, and “using the bathroom” means accessing an outdoor “outhouse.” Heat in your home is generated from a wood- or coal-burning stove, but unless you’re close by, most of your home is still freezing in the winter. Of course, there is no air-conditioning in the summer.

  • Preparing for the primary election

    By Brent Ducharme

    Guest Columnist

    As the March 15 primary approaches, recent changes in state voting law are adding an extra layer of confusion for North Carolinians navigating the path to the polls. It is vital for voters to be prepared for the election March 15.

    Voters with questions or concerns can call the national Election Protection hotline at 888-OUR-VOTE (687-8683). The hotline is available during early voting and will be staffed by volunteer attorneys and trained UNC law students the day of the primary.

  • Thanks to all those who give of themselves

    Thank you to everyone who came out to the Beacon’s annual Health Expo this past Saturday at Shallotte Middle School. I understand the turnout was as excellent as the weather and many people took advantage of screenings, freebies and opportunities to learn about the many health and wellness options available in our community.

    Me, I bowed out of attending on account of my lingering croup. Our annual event is intended to be an exposition of good health, and my presence would have had the opposite effect.