Spieth-Saylor named to succeed Carpenter as editor
Jackie Carpenter, Editor
Jo Ann Spieth-Saylor of Depauw has been named editor of The Corydon Democrat.
The appointment was made this morning by the board of directors of O’Bannon Publishing Co. Inc.
‘Jo Ann is going to be a great editor,’ said publisher and board president Jon O’Bannon. ‘She is extremely detail-oriented and professional.
‘Everyone knows Jo Ann truly loves the community and knows how important a local newspaper is in bringing that community together.’
Spieth-Saylor, 49, is ready to take the helm. She previously served as assistant editor to Jackie Carpenter, who is retiring.
‘I feel very fortunate to have worked under two of the best editors of community newspapers,’ Spieth-Saylor said of Carpenter and the previous editor, Randy West. ‘They have been my mentors since I joined The Corydon Democrat newspaper staff in May 1991.’
As a staff writer, Spieth-Saylor’s routine assignments have included the Lanesville and North Harrison Community School corporations, Harrison County planning and zoning, and police and fire news, in addition to feature writing.
Spieth-Saylor left O’Bannon Publishing Co. Inc. in October 1997 to serve as editor of The Washington County Edition in Salem, a position she held for 14 months before returning to The Democrat.
‘Harrison County has been my home since 1978, and I missed working with the people here, both those at the newspaper and others in the communities,’ she said.
While Spieth-Saylor said she plans no immediate changes, she will work hard to ensure that The Corydon Democrat continues to be a trusted news source for the county.
‘My staff and I will continue to report the news and events as accurately and fairly as possible,’ she said. ‘I want the newspaper to be the place that people go to read about what’s happening here and how it affects them, as well as to learn more about others who live here.’
Spieth-Saylor will direct three general reporters ‘ former sports editor Alan Stewart who has switched to news, and newcomers Ross Schulz and Lindsey Corley ‘ and sports writer Brian Smith. She also will work closely with the newspaper’s paginator and Web site manager, Chris Timberlake.
‘I’m very excited about the team we have put together,’ she said, adding that she welcomes suggestions for stories and wants to hear from others about what they would like to see in the newspaper.’
At the same time, Spieth-Saylor said the newspaper will continue to look at innovative ways to provide readers with news in today’s fast-paced, ever-changing world.
‘We also want to look at ways that we can provide the news, even if it’s a brief portion of a story, in a more timely manner,’ she said. ‘Our readers deserve only the best.’
Spieth-Saylor was born in Indianapolis and moved to Clayton, in Hendricks County, with her parents, Jerry and Jean Weber, in 1963. After graduating from Cascade High School in 1976, she studied communications at Purdue University in West Lafayette and took classes at Indiana University Southeast in New Albany after she moved to Harrison County.
She is a 2005 graduate of Leadership Harrison County and serves on the Leadership board of directors, is a member of the Hoosier State Press Association Better Newspaper Contest and Rules Committee, and is a former member of the former CIT for Metro United Way in Harrison County.
She has earned many HSPA writing and photography awards and received a photography award from the Society of Professional Journalism for metropolitan Louisville.
She and her husband, Ray Saylor, live near Milltown, where he is the chief marshal. They have two grown children, Randy Spieth, who is a news/sports reporter for KDUH-TV in Scottsbluff, Neb., and Kimberly Spieth, who will be a senior at Indiana University, where she is majoring in tourism management.