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New hires bolster Outlaw editorial, distribution teams

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Brandon Walker

Small towns mean a lot to Brandon Walker. That’s because the 23 year old grew up in Marshfield, Vermont, where the total population peaks just over 1,500 people.

“I lived at the dead end of a dirt road,” Walker said. “My grandma was my closest neighbor. You get this sense of community where you’re not just another person in the day when you pass someone in the street.”

In a town like Big Sky, this sort of appreciation for community transfers nicely. Walker will tap into that small-town spirit and his major in electronic journalism arts, which he earned at Northern Vermont University, in his post at Outlaw distributing the Explore Big Sky newspaper and covering local sports.

“I just love how appreciative everyone is to have someone there reporting on the games,” Walker said. Walker, who got his first taste of professional sports journalism on a regional, New England sports TV program, went on to say, “they thank me and I get to do something I enjoy.”

Walker will also be assisting with the distribution of Outlaw Partners’ print media, which includes EBS, Explore Yellowstone and Mountain Outlaw magazine.

Favorite Sports Team: New York Yankees – “Everyone was against me in school.”

Favorite Film: “Free Solo”

Favorite Food: “Macaroni and cheese—the homemade version my mom gave me before playing in sports games.”

Favorite Writer: Gary Paulsen (“Hatchet,” “Winter Room,” “Dogsong”)

Kirby Grubaugh

Kirby Grubaugh, 28, had one of those “Aha!” moments growing up watching snowboarding movies and reading snowboarding magazines—he could combine his passion for carving slopes with the art of mountain sport photography.

“It got a lot of wheels turning for me on what I could do with a camera,” said Grubaugh, __, who will be assisting Walker with distributing Outlaw’s print media and also shooting photos and helping on the social media front..

The Kennewick, Washington native’s passion for capturing the moment has become a passion for capturing the story. And there’s no more natural place for a storyteller in Big Sky than within the ranks of Outlaw Partners’ editorial team, where Grubaugh will be assisting with the company’s social media needs as part of an evolving digitally enhanced media strategy.

“I’m excited to tell the stories that are out there, aren’t being told, and should be,” he said.

Why live in Big Sky? The answer lies all around us, and goes beyond an epic hill just a 10-minute drive from Town Center.

“I previously worked with underprivileged and at-risk youth as well as adults with Peak Seven Adventures out of Spokane,” Grubaugh said. “I knew I liked the outdoors, knew I liked people, and I want to try and play for the rest of my life.”

Strong community in Big Sky? Check. Natural playground? Check. Grubaugh is looking forward to pairing the two essentials with his passion for storytelling.

Favorite Sports Team: Seattle Seahawks – “Everyone where I’m from is a fan.”

Favorite Film: “Hesher” – “It’s kind of a [heavy] metal, independent film with Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Dwight Schrute [Rainn Wilson] from ‘The Office.’”

Favorite Food: “A homemade rib eye cooked over the fire, with a red wine reduction, asparagus and home-style potatoes.”

Favorite Writer: Wes Anderson – “I really like the one with the Boy Scouts … ‘Moonrise Kingdom.’”

Joseph T. O'Connor is the previous Editor-in-Chief for EBS newspaper and Mountain Outlaw magazine.

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