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Business Woman of the Year Katie Kuba (right) receives her award from Buckhannon mayor Robbie Skinner and 2021 honoree Alisa Lively. (Photo by Monica Zalaznik / My Buckhannon)

My Buckhannon editor Katie Kuba named Business Woman of the Year

BUCKHANNON — One summer in the early 2000s, while studying English at Allegheny College, a spunky young girl returned to her hometown in West Virginia over summer break. Passionate about writing, she jumped at the chance to intern at the local newspaper, where she worked under the tutelage of experienced editor Drena Decker and local news veteran John Scott.

Twenty years later, many things have changed, both in that small town of Buckhannon and in the field of journalism. But one thing has not changed – if you have a story to tell, Katie Kuba will help you tell it.

On Thursday, Kuba was recognized as the 2022 Business Woman of the Year at the Buckhannon-Upshur Chamber of Commerce awards banquet. Held at the Event Center at Brushy Fork, the banquet returned to an in-person format for the first time since 2019.

Kuba is the editor of My Buckhannon, a position she’s held since the local business’s founding in 2018. Joining her as this year’s honorees are:

  • Business Man of the Year, Randy Sanders
  • Business of the Year, Highland Landscaping
  • Citizen of the Year, Joey Baxa
  • Organization of the Year, Buckhannon Community Theatre

Alisa Lively, the 2022 Business Woman of the Year, presented the award to Kuba.

Born in a suburb of Philadelphia, Kuba would call Buckhannon home from a young age. She grew up on College Avenue, just a few blocks from West Virginia Wesleyan College, where both her parents worked until recently retiring. After graduating from Buckhannon-Upshur High School in 2001, Kuba would go on to earn her undergrad degree in English from Allegheny College and a master’s degree in American Studies from UMass Boston.

While in school, Kuba interned at The Record Delta, and between degrees she worked at the Erie Times-News. Upon completing her master’s degree in Boston, she returned to Buckhannon and pursued a career in journalism, working as a reporter at several area newspapers, including The Record Delta and the Inter-Mountain in Elkins.

In 2018, Kuba joined founder Brian Bergstrom in launching the online news platform My Buckhannon, which brings readers daily stories from in and around Upshur County. Under her guidance, the My Buckhannon team has grown to include reporter Monica Zalaznik, sports editor Duane Carpenter and digital content manager Beckie Boyd – and of course Kuba’s muse, her always snuggly cat Myles.

Kuba is a storyteller at heart, and a fierce advocate of professional journalism. Despite My Buckhannon’s small size, she works tirelessly to tell the stories that matter to the people of Upshur County. Her writing is clear, accurate, engaging, and meaningful.

While My Buckhannon is an innovative digital platform, Kuba brings old-school journalism ethics to the job. She believes journalists must be out in the community, interacting with the people they serve, which is why she’s such a familiar face around town, whether she’s mingling at Stone Tower Brews or hunkered down at a Buckhannon City Council meeting.

Over the years, Kuba has documented the course of life in Buckhannon – triumphs and tragedies alike. Along the way, she has collected a slew of awards from the West Virginia Press Association, recognizing her coverage of business, government, and in-depth local news features.

If you haven’t read anything by Kuba recently, you won’t have to wait long – her most recent story, focusing on homelessness in Buckhannon, will hit My Buckhannon subscriber inboxes at 5 a.m. sharp.

Pictured below are the 2022 Buckhannon-Upshur Chamber of Commerce winners, with the exception of firefighter Joey Baxa, who was teaching a class in California and could not attend Thursday’s banquet. Stay tuned to My Buckhannon for full stories on all the honorees.

The Business Man of the Year award is presented to Randy Sanders (right) by Buckhannon Mayor Robbie Skinner and Alisa Lively. (Photo by Monica Zalaznik / My Buckhannon)
The Business of the Year award is presented to Highland Landscaping owner Bobby Gompers (right) by Buckhannon Mayor Robbie Skinner and Nathaniel Bonnell, president of 2021 honoree Citizens Bank. (Photo by Monica Zalaznik / My Buckhannon)
The Organization of the Year award is presented to Buckhannon Community Theatre executive producer Rise Hanifan (right) by Buckhannon Mayor Robbie Skinner and Jeremiah McCourt, representing 2021 honoree Upshur County Trails. (Photo by Monica Zalaznik / My Buckhannon)

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