Noted area journalist Jon Alexander enjoys fishing along a stretch of the Hudson river in his hometown of Warrensburg. Moving soon to Twin Falls, Idaho, Alexander will be surrounded by wild mountain country — and great hunting and fishing experiences — which he has enjoyed here in the Adirondacks for decades. Alexander is relocating to Twins Falls to take a position as Editorial Page Editor of the Twin Falls Times News.
A leading journalist of the southern Adirondacks will soon be loading his motorcycle into the back of his pickup truck, tossing in a couple of suitcases —and leaving his hometown of Warrensburg behind, heading for Idaho.
And it won’t be to write a travelogue.
Jon Alexander of Warrensburg — who launched his news-reporting career with Denton Publications — is moving to Twin Falls, Idaho to become the editorial writer and Editor of Community Engagement of the Twin Falls Times-News.
Alexander started off as a reporter for the Adirondack Journal in 2008, and in 2009 served as Editor of the North Creek News Enterprise. Later that year, he was named Assistant News Director of radio station WNBZ of Saranac Lake. Since 2011, he’s been a high-profile reporter for the Post-Star in Glens Falls, primarily covering governmental affairs and breaking news. For most of his journalism career, he’s also reported for North Country Public Radio, based in Canton.
Alexander’s last day at the Post-Star is Aug. 3, and on Aug. 19 he starts in his new position, writing editorials and creating the opinion pages for the Times-News. Both newspapers are owned by Lee Enterprises.
Alexander is well-known for his articles, many of which have explored the quirky elements of human behavior underlying political activities and processes.
Alexander credits his studies in anthropology, which he said has offered him insights into the parallels between primate behavior and political dynamics.
“While our closest primate relatives form alliances by killing and sharing the meat, humans are good at forming committees,” he said. “I like to look at the actions of legislative bodies through an evolutionary perspective.”
One of Alexander’s top achievements was his report on how Gov. Andrew Cuomo was clamping down on public access to information in his adminstration, and the fears and resentments it sparked. The article prompted a response from the Cuomo administration, and some observers say the Governor has since backed off on the approach.
Alexander’s questioning of public works officials years ago about beefing up engineering and construction of roadways and bridges in the wake of increasingly frequent violent weather incidents has prompted new conversations on re-thinking infrastructure design. His articles on the issue of climate change, violent weather and infrastructure are now referenced by various authoritative sources.
His article on the unexpected early deterioration of intentionally-rusting steel used in the Adirondacks for guiderails and elsewhere for bridges and buildings — written while a Denton employee — also achieved national attention. Alexander noted that the subsequent replacement of the boutique steel cost taxpayers more than $120 million.
Alexander is a 2000 graduate of Warrensburg Central. He continued his studies at SUNY Oneonta, followed by graduate work in New Mexico, focusing on Anthropology.
Monday, Alexander reflected on his formative years working for Denton Publications and his newswriting in the Adirondacks.
“Denton’s got my foot in the door, gave me my initial training — and it meant a lot to me,” he said. “I’ve enjoyed covering news in the area, and I’ll miss it — but this is a good career move.”
Alexander continued that he was looking forward to not only his new post at the Times-News but also experiencing the wild country of Idaho, which offers outstanding hunting and fishing in its high plains and in the two mountain ranges between which Twin Falls is located.
“The position at the Times-News is really exciting,” he said, noting he’ll doubtlessly be intrigued with the different culture of the west, with its streak of individualism. “Also, the fly-fishing in the Snake River is world-class.”