Arkansas Editorial Photographer

Milken Educator Awards | Arkansas Editorial Photographer

In late 2016 and in early 2017, I spent a several days over the course of six weeks traveling throughout the southeast again working with the Milken Family Foundation photographing the Milken Educator Awards. I worked with this incredible foundation previously in 2015 for the same event.

What are the Milken Educator Awards? An initiative of the Milken Family Foundation, founded by Lowell Milken, the awards honors up-and-coming educators around the country and awards each with a $25,000 unrestricted cash prize. In the words of Dr. Jane Foley, senior vice president, Milken Educator Awards, at the Milken Family Foundation, who won the award herself for the state of Indiana in 1994, "Movies has the Oscar's, music has the Grammy's, science has the Nobel Prize and sports has its gold medals. We have the Milken Educator Awards." Teacher magazine calls it, "The Oscars of Teaching."

For 30 years, the Milken Educator Awards has recognized and rewarded excellence in education by honoring, and surprising (more on that below) top educators around the country in a very public way. To date, more than 2,700 Awards have been given out, totaling $68 million. Once an educator wins this award, their careers in education will never be the same.

Simply put, this is an absolutely wonderful event to photograph. The winners have NO idea they've won until their names are called. No one knows. Not the students, not even the rest of the faculty have any idea what's about to happen. Only a select few administrators knows who wins. An educator cannot apply to receive this award. You don't find them, they find you. As you will see below, some of their reactions range from shock, to utter joy to disbelief.

Below are some of my favorites moments from each state I photographed: Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Florida and Mississippi.

I am really looking forward to working with The Milken Family Foundation again this year.







On a side note: I left the newspaper world over four years ago so it was fun to see my name on the front page (maybe) one last time.

From Baths to Beers: Part Two | Superior Bathhouse Brewery

By now, most of us know about Superior Bathhouse Brewery in Hot Springs. It's the only brewery located in a national park. I spent a day at Superior this past spring photographing their brewing process as well as some beauty shots of selected beers and some of their more popular menu items.

The old, and historic, Superior bathhouse seemed like a logical place to have a brewery, after all bathhouses are built to handle large amounts of beer's main ingredient: hot water.

 Karen E. Segrave | KES Photo

Superior Bathhouse Brewery

The idea of re-purposing an old building as a brewery is not new. Retrofitting Superior posed special challenges since the bathhouse building itself is a National Historic Landmark.

The spring water that is brought into the building is already at 142 degrees, so less energy is needed to get it to 172 degrees which is ideal for brewing beer.

Superior is getting lots of national attention. In a recent article by the Chicago Tribune, spoke to owner Rose Schweikhart, "Very few springs are both hot and potable. We are the only brewery in the world utilizing thermal spring water in our beer. You will find many breweries with spring water and many breweries that use geothermal technology to heat water, but we are truly the only one who uses thermal spring water out of the ground directly into our processing vessels."

 Karen E. Segrave | KES Photo

Superior Bathhouse Brewery

There's a lot of downtime when it comes to brewing beer, which is something I learned during my photo shoot. In between the steps of the brewing process is when I photographed the beer beauty shots. You can see those in my other blog post.

Once the brewing process is complete, the spent grains are then scooped out and dumped into buckets. But what to do with it? Jay Lee, a local farmer and owner of JV Farms in Bismarck picks up the grains who then feeds it to his pigs. To the pigs, it's like eating candy. JV Farms processes their pork and several of their items can be found on the menu at Superior. I can attest to how good their bratwurst it.

More on that in another blog post coming next month....


Broadway Bridge | A River's Eye View

I was asked to photograph the Broadway Bridge construction project by Arkansas Business. The current bridge, nearly a century old, will close to all traffic for up to six months while the new bridge is installed. The new bridge which is being built by Kansas City-based Massman Construction Co., is being built in sections. Many drivers only get to see the construction of the bridge as they commute over the current bridge, the Main Street Bridge to the east or other outlets.

 Karen E. Segrave | KES Photo

The Broadway Bridge has been under construction for the last 18 months by Kansas City-based Massman Construction Co. Once closed the installation of the new bridge will take 180 days.

I spent a very hot afternoon on a steel barge in the middle of the Arkansas River to get a unique view of this long overdue project.