Hometown: St. Petersburg, FL
Rachel Jolley is a USF grad, daughter of a retired fire official and St. Pete native to boot. She is also the local editor for for the Tarpon Springs Patch.
Jolley began freelancing for Patch in December, 2010. By October, 2011 she had moved into the assistant editor position for South Pinellas, where she covered stories for three Patch sites: Old Northeast, Gulfport and the Pinellas Beaches.
In August of 2012, Jolley accepted the local editor position in Tarpon Springs which included launching her very own site. With support from the community and her fellow Patchers, Jolley hit the ground running with Tarpon Springs Patch and is now a proud resident of the city.
Reporting on the local community isn't Jolley's only passion.
With a lengthy career on the pitch, Jolley lists soccer as her first love and even played Division 1 ball on an athletic scholarship. Now, she coaches competitive youth teams.
Whenever Jolley can find the time, she enjoys spending her time either outdoors or with family.
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 because human beings have beliefs. So in the spirit of simple honesty, our policy is to encourage our editors to reveal their beliefs to the extent they feel comfortable.
This disclosure is not a license for us to inject our 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 cause us to be ever mindful to write, report and edit in a fair, balanced way. And if you ever see evidence that we failed in this mission, please let us know.
How would you describe your political beliefs?
I consider myself an independent as far as politics go. I like to keep my options and my mind open. As a proud American, I believe in excercising my rights and will be supportive of my fellowman.
How religious would you consider yourself? (casual, observant, devout, non religious)
Similar to my political views, I think that we are all entitled to our own beliefs and practices when it comes to religion. I am a spiritual individual and have a personal relationship with God.
I think respect is key and that all followers, of any faith (or not), should treat one any other with kindness and compassion.
Local Hot-Button Issues
What do you think are the most important issues facing the community?
I am new to the area, but from what I have learned so far it seems like there is a strong desire for economic development. The main concern I've heard is that folks are on board for growth, but do not want to lose the rich history that Tarpon Springs possesses.
Small businesses are also important to the area. Business owners strive to put Tarpon on the map, not only for visitors and shoppers, but for new businesses as well.
Culture and education are also important to this community. Preserving the Greek ancestry is kept up by the current generation.
Where do you stand on each of these issues?
With an open mind, I am elated to be immersed in the culture and lifestyle that Tarpon Springs has to offer. I think that all of the issues are imperative to the city's growth and success.
Economic development, small businesses and culture will be my main focal points of coverage. However, if Tarpon Springs Patch readers are concerned with other issues, I will alter my gameplan.
After all, I am your local editor and my goal is to keep you, the reader, happy.