Welcome to the Ohio County Monitor Community Contributors’ page. Here you will found out a little more about our community contributors and can specifically find pieces written by them conveniently in one place with a few clicks.

This pilot project was created as part of a partnership between the Ohio County Monitor, former Ohio County newsman Sam Ford, and the Tow Center for Digital Journalism at Columbia University in New York City.

The idea behind it was to somewhat bring the idea of society columnists from the old newspaper days into the 21st century. These writers are members of the community and they will be writing about whatever they feel like writing about. It could be about the goings on in a small community in Ohio County, a feature about a person they admire, a bit of history, or any subject they feel the citizens of Ohio County would appreciate.

Click here to view their posts.

Community Contributors:

Angie Hudnall

Angie Hudnall lives in Cromwell, Ky., and is a health improvement nurse for Perdue Farms. She has been a registered nurse for 18 years in long term care, physical rehab, mental health, substance abuse treatment, and home health.

Tara Ward

Tara N. Ward is a Hartford native and 2001 graduate of Ohio County High School. She obtained a bachelor’s degree in Economics from Western Kentucky University and a law degree from Washington University in St. Louis. Tara has a private law practice in Hartford and volunteers for many boards, committees, and community service oriented projects in the county. She is a devoted dog mom and lacks much free time due to various commitments and projects, including building a house and planning a wedding. When she can grab a spare minute, she enjoys hiking, kayaking, and getting together with friends.

Cheryl Gilstrap

Cheryl Gilstrap is a retired middle school reading teacher and a proud Army Brat. She loves spending time with her grandchildren. Reading fiction and writing poetry are also favorite pastimes. She lives in Cromwell, Ky., with her husband Cecil, a 10 year old black cat named Jack, and a ginger cat named Butters who is always causing trouble around the house.

James Robinson

James, a native Tennessean, has lived in Beaver Dam, Kentucky, for nearly 26 years. James spent the first part of his life living and working on a small farm and later working in construction. In 1993, a construction accident forced a change in his career. Since 1997, James has worked in the court system, as the supervisor for social services and Together We Care Director of Ohio County Schools, as executive director of the International Center of Kentucky, and management in the private sector. He returned to the Ohio County Schools in 2016 and works there today. He has worked with groups in several states and three countries in matters relating to family, youth and immigration/refugees, and has worked in Frankfort and in Washington, D.C., nearly 15 years, advocating for the same. James is a graduate of University of Louisville and Brescia, where he is a member of the Brescia Alumni Hall of Fame. He is married to Sandy Johnson Robinson. They have three children: Ashley Robinson Coleman (Atticus and grandson Asa); Cody Robinson (and wife Christy Luttrell Robinson); Thad Robinson (and Melinda Phelps).

Tiffany Calvert

Tiffany Calvert began work as the new Ohio County Extension Agent for Family and Consumer Sciences on January 1, 2013. She earned her Bachelor of Science from Western Kentucky University and her Master of Arts in Education from University of the Cumberlands. Tiffany has a passion to teach others about nutrition, food preservation and how to save food dollars. She shares her interests in kayaking, gardening, hunting and being outdoors with her husband Trent and two sons Talon and Tateum. The following are a few community events she participates in: Longest Day of Play, Celebrate the Baby, Truth & Consequences: The Choice is Yours, Children’s Farmer’s Market and several others.

For more information on programs Ohio County Cooperative Extension Service has to offer like the extension office on Facebook or call (270) 298-7441.

Heather Blair

Heather Blair is a Kentucky girl at heart, growing up in a small town she’ll never leave and has a love for backroads and bluegrass landscapes.  She finds joy in the little things, like butterflies and farmers markets, friends and family gathered at the table and catching more fish than her hubby. Her best-selling novel is currently in her head but, in the meantime, she has been published online for over a decade.

Erinn Williams

Erinn Williams hails from Whitley County in the heart of Southeastern Kentucky, and now resides in Owensboro with her husband, Seth. She is an Elementary Education major, working this fall in the Daviess County Public Schools as a preschool educator. Erinn is actively involved as a volunteer for the Bill Monroe Foundation at the Bill Monroe Homeplace in Rosine and recently served as the Kids Zone Coordinator for ROMP in Owensboro. Bluegrass runs deep within her roots, as she comes from a long line of musicians, and is an aspiring mandolin player. She is active in her church and in the recovery community. Erinn loves the outdoors, traveling with her husband, cooking, and appreciates a fresh glass of lemonade. She has a passion for writing, spreading hope through her faith, and being with family and friends.

Gavin Richardson is a native of Hancock County, Kentucky, with family roots in Ohio County as the son of Beverly (Ford) Richardson and grandson of Grace (Moore) Ford and Charles E. Ford. Gavin earned a B.A. in English and Classics from Vanderbilt University and a Ph.D. in English from the University of Illinois. He is Professor of English at Union University in Jackson, Tennessee. He is married with three sons, and is the great-great-great-great grandson of John W. and Cynthia Ford profiled in this essay.