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Concerning my career, I’ve been given a few. The earliest was during high school when I was given the opportunity to write about my high school sports teams for my hometown weekly paper. While attending college in Pennsylvania, I had the opportunity to write and ultimately shoot pictures for a daily newspaper. Later, a photography internship at a daily newspaper in Morris County led to a 20-year career at the publication, half the time as a staff photographer, the other half as the photo editor.

And now, I’ve been given another opportunity.

I am honored and more than thrilled (and a little nervous) to be the new editor at Lake Hopatcong News & Reviews. My goals are simple; to improve upon an already great publication, both in print and on the web. My philosophy is just as simple; to provide readers with useful information concerning the Lake Hopatcong community, and to report on important and interesting events taking place on and around the lake.

As mentioned previously, my career in journalism began on a sports field. Always interested in sport—I played three sports in high school, one sport in college—I thought I would be a sports writer for a newspaper, especially after writing for The Progress while attending James Caldwell High School in Essex County. I continued to pursue sports writing during college, securing a freelance gig covering high school football for The Pocono Record while attending East Stroudsburg University. It was during this time I was asked if I could shoot pictures at a football game. Eager to please, I said yes, even though I had very little photography experience. I thought, ‘how hard could it be to shoot high school football?’ Little did I know…

My first assignment was not a Saturday afternoon high school football game. It was a college game, under the lights, at Montclair State. Oh boy. With borrowed equipment, very little knowledge, and even less confidence, I traveled with the sports editor from East Stroudsburg to Montclair. Hours later, back in the lab, I learned the awful truth about my blind eagerness. Two or three rolls of film and not one image. Nothing. Just total greyness on 108 frames.

I apologized told them not to pay me for the job. I said I would replace the now useless rolls of film. I asked for another opportunity.

And they gave it to me.

So here I am, all these years, and millions of photos, and several photography awards later, and I’m starting something new, being given another opportunity. Unlike my first attempt at photography however, this time around I’m well-seasoned, prepared, and confident. Not only am I armed with years of local journalism experience, I also bring a passion for all things Lake Hopatcong, a community I’ve called home for 14 years. And, as they say, it’s all come “full circle.” I’m writing again.

In the months ahead you will see some changes happening, especially on our website. I encourage you to let me know what you think, good and bad. I also encourage and welcome you to offer up story ideas. My email address is editor@lakehopatcongnews.com.

Let’s get started.

Karen Fucito, Editor, Lake Hopatcong News

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