J.D. O'Connor
jd@patch.com 925.457.4503 twitter.com/LamorindaPatch Originally from: California... fourth generation. Birthday: Yes Bio: I covered the police beat for the San Francisco Examiner, The Associated Press and United Press International for nearly 20 years... and beyond.   For those of you who know me as John, "J.D." is the newspaper byline given to me by a harried Examiner editor who admonished me to "keep it short" - right down to my name.  I'm married, have two kids who keep me on my toes and a parade of wildlife and companion animals who actually own our property in Moraga.  A fourth generation Californian, we arrived in Lamorinda in 1968. Beliefs At Patch, we promise always to report the facts as objectively as possible and otherwise adhere to the principles of good journalism. However, we also acknowledge that true impartiality is impossible and human beings have beliefs. So in the spirit of simple honesty, our policy is to encourage our editors to reveal certain key beliefs to the extent they feel comfortable. This disclosure is not a license for our editors to inject these beliefs into stories or to dictate coverage according to them. In fact, the intent is the opposite: we hope that the knowledge that our beliefs are on the record will force us to be ever mindful to write, report, and edit in a fair, balanced way. And if you, the user, ever think you see evidence that we failed in this mission, we wholeheartedly invite you to let us know. Politics How would you describe your political beliefs? I am a registered member of the Independent Party and gravitated to the party long before it was fashionable to do so.  I am for justice and the principles set forth in our Constitution.  I happen to believe strongly in the five freedoms guaranteed by the First Amendment - Freedom of Speech, Religion, the Press, Freedom of Assembly and the Freedom to petition the government - beliefs buttressed by the fact that a lot of good people have died to make these freedoms available to us. Religion How religious would you say you are? Casual, observant, devout, non-religious? I was raised Roman Catholic but left the church when a drunken parish priest turned a funeral service for the sister of a teen-age friend into a slurry petition for more funds to build a new church.  I'm afraid I walked out of the service at that point and never went back. Local Hot Button Issues What do you think are the most important issues facing the community? Transparency of government, growth, education, crime. Where do you stand on each of these issues? Transparency: After serving as a volunteer on a city traffic safety advisory committee I was concerned by some of the internal processes I was seeing and started an online news resource to cover some of those issues.  It became apparent in a relatively short period of time that others in the community shared my view and were looking for a forum in which to air their frustrations and observations. Growth: Living in Lamorinda for 40 years has both its upside and downside - the upside being the area and its people, many of whom graduated, left home, and have returned to raise their own families here.  The downside, however, is having the benchmark of "I remember when..." - the memory of roads less travelled, hillsides without homes on them and the youthful impression, perhaps, of a quieter, more people-friendly home town. Education: Schools and the education provided students in Lamorinda has always been a hot-button issue.  The relative affluence of the area has made it possible for the local school districts to provide students with opportunities and programs no longer available to many districts throughout the state.  Parents are extremely involved and with two children of our own in local schools, the issues associated with giving all kids an educational foundation they can build on is paramount. Crime: Although one of the safest areas to live in within our state, Lamorinda has seen crime emerge as an issue in recent years.  Our growth, affluence, and proximity to a major highway has made Lamorinda a prime target for thieves of late - and readers have indicated a desire to be informed of trends as they develop.
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J.D. O'Connor deleted post in Launch Your Career with LinkedIn - Webex May 30, 2013 at 07:05 pm

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J.D. O'Connor deleted post in 'California Shades' Art Show At Orinda Library May 29, 2013 at 12:19 pm

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