Last spring, I sat down with Sharon Adams, co-founder of Walnut Way Conservation Corp., to chat with her about her work. I was working on a story for a series called Coming Home, which explored the lives of Milwaukeeans who’d moved away from the city but who ultimately returned to make a difference in their hometown.
I knew Adams, and I knew her work in the Lindsay Heights community had been impactful, so I was excited to talk with her. However, what I didn't expect is for it to be one of the most moving interviews I’ve ever conducted.
We talked for three hours, every moment painstakingly recorded and later transcribed. And as I sat with the transcription, weaving our meandering conversation into a cohesive story, I remember being distinctly moved – nearly to tears – at certain junctures. "What a phenomenal woman," I thought to myself many times, "I need to know more people like Sharon Adams. I need to BE more like Sharon Adams."
So, when I saw that NPR had featured a StoryCorps segment during "Morning Edition" about Sharon and her husband Larry, I immediately tuned in. And wow. It's only three minutes long, but it's powerful stuff.
It literally gave me the chills – those genuine, amazing, we’re-all-human-and-that’s-amazing chills, as well as the holy-cow-these-Milwaukee-folks-are-amazing chills.
It also made me think: Maybe love really IS the answer, after all.
So give it a listen. But put on a sweater first.
Lori is an avid cook whose accrual of condiments and spices is rivaled only by her cookbook collection. Her passion for the culinary industry was birthed while balancing A&W root beer mugs as a teenage carhop, fed by insatiable curiosity and fueled by the people whose stories entwine with each and every dish. She’s had the privilege of chronicling these tales via numerous media, including OnMilwaukee and in her book “Milwaukee Food.” Her work has garnered journalism awards from entities including the Milwaukee Press Club.
When she’s not eating, photographing food, writing or recording the FoodCrush podcast, you’ll find Lori seeking out adventures with her husband Paul, traveling, cooking, reading, learning, snuggling with her cats and looking for ways to make a difference.