I was born and raised in Santa Fe, N.M., where I attended high school at Santa Fe Preparatory School, serving as photo editor of the yearbook. After attending Colorado College in Colorado Springs for two years and writing for the campus newspaper The Catalyst, I transferred to the University of Texas at Austin, where I wrote for The Daily Texan and earned an undergraduate degree in English, with a minor in Spanish, in 1994.
My first “real” journalism job came in 1995, as reporter/photographer for the weekly Clear Creek Courant in Idaho Springs, Colorado. Almost two years later, I moved about 30 miles west to Frisco, where I served as staff writer for the Summit Daily News and its weekly and monthly sister publications.
In 1997, I began a tenure of nearly 12 years with the University of Colorado’s independent faculty/staff newspaper, Silver & Gold Record. I started out as a reporter and worked my way up to assistant editor and, ultimately, editor. While working at CU, I served as the paper’s photography editor and webmaster, and in 2002 I earned a master’s degree in journalism, penning a thesis about interactivity on newspaper websites.
I was managing editor at Boulder Weekly from September 2009 to March 2014, where I won 32 awards in the Top of the Rockies contest for the Rocky Mountain region of the Society of Professional Journalists. I was also part of a writing team that won a national award from the Association of Alternative Newsmedia for co-authoring the 2012 Boulder Weekly series Ghosts of Valmont Butte.
Since then I’ve served as communications coordinator for Colorado State University in Fort Collins, supporting the College of Health and Human Sciences and College of Liberal Arts.
– Cary Stiff, The Clear Creek Courant