Hey, Spike! finds there’s life after newspapering | SummitDaily.com

Hey, Spike! finds there’s life after newspapering

There is life after newspapering — just ask Alex Miller and Jane Reuter.

They are former well-known journalists on The Summit, having worked for a variety of pubs, now plying their talents down in Denver at ViaSat, a big-deal company providing internet services in gaps where others don't reach.

Both were staffers at the Summit Daily, Summit Sentinel, and Copper Cable and Ten Mile Times.

Alex graduated from Summit High in 1982 and completed his formal education at the University of Colorado in Boulder in '87.

He was managing editor at the Summit Daily, and our Swift Communications' sister daily in Vail.

Since 2012, Alex has been working at ViaSat in Inverness, the Denver Tech Center, not far from IKEA, and living in nearby Highlands Ranch.

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According to Alex, ViaSat is $1.4 billion company that does satellite communications, including a service called Exede (previously WildBlue), providing internet in areas where high-speed cable and fiber don't go.

"Think of people north of Silverthorne or over in Alma, we have almost 700,000 customers nationwide," he explains. "What's really cool is that early next year we're launching the first of four new satellites, and that'll greatly improve and expand our service from here in the U.S. to all around the world."

ViaSat aims to be the first global internet provider, with service for homes, businesses, aircraft and even ships.

"We've been getting a lot of press lately for our service on aircraft, which works a lot better than the ones using cellular networks," he adds. "We're also going to be putting our service on senior government leader and staff aircraft."

ViaSat's headquarters is in Carlsbad, California. The company has about 3,700 employees, with around 430 in Denver.

"I work in the marketing department as content editor, and I do a variety of writing and producing for the Exede service," explains Alex. "As I write this I'm on the set for a video we're shooting in Castle Rock. I work on copy for our website, ad materials, video and radio scripts and even some television commercials. I also help manage our social media sites as well as a community forum where our subscribers go for info on the service. I've ended up using a lot of my writing experience plus some of my previous TV and stage experience, so it's worked out to be a pretty cool job."

Jane Reuter's job at ViaSat is also as a content writer.

"She does a lot of writing for our dealer newsletter and online help center and also does some local PR outreach," he says.

Does he miss newspapering and living in the mountains?

Alex says, "I sure do, and I miss Summit a ton. But four of our five kids (plus now two granddaughters) are down here so that's very nice."

Alex reports wife Jen is back in the college recruiting business.

"Jen is a recruiter for Texas Tech University and works out of our home in Highlands Ranch, while also traveling a fair amount as part of her job," he notes. "She's picked up where she left off when she recruited for Pepperdine University when we lived out in Los Angeles and she really enjoys it."

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"Hey, Spike!, once again, my thanks for helping make our 2015 Senior Rummage silent auction a record $22,700, which, along with proceeds from the rummage sale, allowed us to grant $47,500 to deserving nonprofits in Summit County," writes senior activist Evie O'Connor Lau.

"Your recent 'Hey, Spike! gathers up a slew of informative newsy items' made me think that, perhaps, you would have occasion to mention this year's silent auction in a column with other items of interest," Evie asks.

This year's silent auction will be held in conjunction with the rummage sale on Thursday, July 28, to Saturday, July 30, with closing bids at 4 p.m., Saturday.

"I am preparing my usual wine presentations, including Silver Oak Napa Valley Cabernet, gathering certificates from some of our wonderful merchants, and obtaining antiques and collectibles. I would be so happy to have another vehicle donated," adds Evie, recalling last year's Porsche 928 and Toyota Camry donations.

The Summit County Senior Services offers social, educational and recreational activities, community outreach and volunteer opportunities, Mountain Meals, care navigation information and referrals and medical transportation. For more info, call (970) 668-2940.

Miles F. Porter IV, nicknamed "Spike," a Coloradan since 1949, is an Army veteran, former hardrock miner, graduate of Adams State College, and a local since 1982. An award-winning investigative reporter, he and wife Mary E. Staby owned newspapers here for 20 years. Email your social info to milesfporteriv@aol.com