Local journalist awarded East Kentucky Leadership for Media and Technology

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(WYMT) - For Jamie Lucke, it has been a journey that has taken her across the Commonwealth of Kentucky to Across the Atlantic Ocean, but through her more than 40-year career in Journalism, Jamie Lucke has never lost sight of where she is from.

Jamie Lucke calls Morehead Kentucky home. She graduated from High School there and has always had a keen memory of the place where you could say the journey began.

"We moved around quite a bit when I was little but it always felt like basically a variation on the same little college town just on one side or the other of the mountains," said Jamie Lucke.

Lucke graduated from the University of Kentucky in 1976. The University was just a little more than 50 miles from her hometown and where she discovered her true love for writing.

From Lexington she went on to a handful of stops in Kentucky, then to England on a Scholarship, one of the first people in Kentucky to be awarded one, and then when she returned she had the distinct honor of moving to Jacksonville Florida and writing for the Times Union before making stops on Georgia, and Alabama before being hired on at the Lexington Herald-Leader.

"Graduated College in 1976 I immediately went to work for landmark community newspapers I was so lucky right out of college," said Lucke remembering her start in Journalism. "From 1987 until a month or so ago, a long time, a lifetime."

Lucke was on the editorial board for the Herald-Leader until her retirement. She wrote tons of articles in her time including many about her home region of Eastern Kentucky.

"What I believe is that Eastern Kentucky is America Distilled to its essence," said Lucke.

In her time writing she detailed a sludge spill in Martin County, and her goodbye article at the H-L where she highlighted how the beauty of Eastern Kentucky should not be ruined by the proposed building of a Federal Prison int he Roxanna Community of Letcher County.

"I just think the place deserves better," said Lucke.

Lucke still has a passion for writing and Journalism, sometimes stepping in to write freelance articles for the H-L Lucke has a message to pass on to future writers.

"I would say question your own beliefs, that's really important. To examine what you believe and figure out why you believe it," said Lucke with passion.

As she tells the future generation of writers to find their path she remembers the path she helped blaze and establish at the Herald-Leader making sure that those who picked up a paper in Lexington and Across the Commonwealth were spurred with thought-provoking articles written to help those who need it and entice those who are not hurt to help those who are.

"The job of journalism is to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable, and the Herald-Leader editorial page has always done a good job of finding a way to afflict the comfortable," said Lucke.

Lucke is the winner of the 2019 East Kentucky Leadership Award for Media and Technology. The East Kentucky Leadership Foundation Awards are being held Thursday and Friday at the Benham School House Inn.