Bill Boyle, my younger brother, editor and publisher of the San Juan Record, was recently awarded the Master Editor and Publisher Award by the Utah Press Association. Here is how he was introduced.
He’s sensible: (Actual headlines from state-wide papers) “Bill to Help Charter Schools, Bill Boosting Health Care, Bill Would Ease Gun-toting Limits, Bill to Produce Charcoal from Landfills, Bill Allows Next of Kin to Sign Death Certificates, Bill Gives Concessions to Recreationists, Bill Would Expand Aid to Blind, Deaf Students”.
He’s serious: “Bill Would Streamline Access to Secret Info on Judges, Bill Thins Concurrent Enrollment Choices, Bill Would Scrutinize Jordan School District Spending, Bill to Require Business Licenses, Bill to Require Calorie Counts on Menus, Bill to Study Economic Effect of Immigrants, Bill Would Stop Unions from Paying Union Leaders.”
He’s constant: Bill to Simplify, Bill Goes to Governor, Bill as Guv Declares Latino Day, Bill Passes House, Moves to Senate, Bill Sails Through the Utah Senate.
He’s human: Bill Stirs Confusion, Bill Loses Support of the Community, Bill Stymied Over Gun Rights, Bill Falls Short.
Bill Boyle describes himself as “editor, publisher, and janitor” of the San Juan Record in Monticello, titles he has unassumingly held for the past 14 years. But Bill’s entire life has been one of interest, involvement, and adventure. In a cheerful sort of way, he is a first-class button pusher. You know, the kid who always wants to push the buttons in the elevator, turn on the lights, start the cars, ride the escalators, climb the mountains, see the world. But Bill also contributes; never a snollygoster, he is an unswerving supplier.
In high school, whatever was going on at Monticello High School, Bill was there. His name is on nearly every trophy in the high school trophy case from the 1970s.
College training at Snow College, Brigham Young University, and Stanford University provided plentiful avenues for button pushing and contributions to clubs, associations, and organizations.
Along the way have been years spent working in his beloved Holy Land, which in recent years includes tour guiding, backpacking in Europe and China, and exploring the “Wonders of San Juan.”
Family life follows the same pattern, with wife Linda and five kids, David 16, Hannah 15, Katie 12, Millie 10 and Joseph 5. They take advantage of small town culture, with everyone regularly participating whereever and whenever; dancing, aerobics, volleyball, cheerleading, running, skiing, wrestling, drama, music, school and church.
The entire family has been involved in community plays that are occasional staples of Monticello life. Recently, oldest son David placed second in the 1A state wrestling championship. These are “opportunities to pursue excellence,” as Bill calls them.
Bill’s time in Monticello has been eventful. And he’s still pushing buttons. In addition to publishing the San Juan Record, Bill has served eight years on the Governor’s Office of Economic Development.
Governor Walker’s Rural Affairs Committee benefitted from Bill’s contributions, as did Governor Huntsman’s Transition Team, the Utah Press Association Board, and Canyonlands Natural History Association, which included a stint as chairman.
He is currently serving his second four-year term on the San Juan School Board, his third year on the Utah High School Activities Association Board, and his second year on the National Federation of High Schools Publications Committee.
He wrote the cover story of the October 2008 issue of the national publication, High School Today, recounting the roads to leadership traveled by presidential candidates Barack Obama and John McCain, and the impact of high school sports on those roads.
He has been Monticello Citizen of the Year and Utah Small Businessman of the Year.
His story of how he became “editor, publisher, and janitor” of the SJR actually began many years ago while in grade school, when he announced his intention of owning the paper. His dream at the San Juan Record has been, from the start, an innovative, energetic, and doggedly determined voyage.
Recently, in an effort to improve the paper and in response to rising costs, he initiated some dramatic changes, deciding to have his paper printed in the Salt Lake Valley, 300 miles away from Monticello, instead of Cortez, Colorado, 66 miles away.
Predictably, the change brought positive alterations, including saving money, allowing the paper to be printed with color every week, and facilitating a change to a standard-sized paper. And so far, the paper has arrived on time, every time, color and stories intact.
He also launched the SJRnews.com website, which is growing in popularity every week. In his spare time, he added a successful, opportune book store to the San Juan Record office building.
Through it all Bill has been steady, fair-minded, level-headed, and passionate about his life and his life’s work. Never has adversity, sometimes serious, succeeded in deterring Bill from his goals, hopes, and aspirations.
Indeed, he has said that trials have helped him focus on the important things, to do “what you can do and go to the limits of that.”
As the newspaper headline announces, “Bill is Approved!”