Author Archive

Phil Busse

Phil Busse

Phil Busse has spent the past 20 years as a journalist, attorney and educator—and doing his tour of duty with alt-weeklies.

He has served as the Editor for the Source, a popular weekly newspaper in Bend, Oregon and was the founding Managing Editor for the Portland Mercury. While in law school, he wrote crime and legal stories for the Eugene Weekly and started his writing career as the first environmental beat reporter for San Francisco Weekly.

In 2006, Phil started the Media Institute for Social Change (MediaMakingChange.org), an educational non-profit. Based in Portland, Oregon, the organization hosts college students each summer to teach them how to produce public interest film and radio documentaries—and, in 2013, helped launch XRAY.FM, a talk and music radio station that won Willamette Week’s readers choice for Best Local Radio Station in 2015.

Phil is truly surprised that he ended up as a newspaperman; as a kid, he believed that he would grow up to be a spy, and has spent a lifetime acquiring the proper skills—he is certified SCUBA diver, knows how to tie a bow tie and can mix (shake) a mean martini.

Phil graduated from Middlebury College in 1992 and earned his law degree from the University of Oregon in 1997.

Rogue Valley Messenger: Your organization indicates that birds are indicator species. What are birds in southern Oregon currently telling us?   John Alexander: Results from our long-term monitoring and research show that many western forest birds are in decline, likely as a result of intensive forest and river management, including fire

Undoubtedly, the national parks of the United States of America are one of the greatest destinations for adventure-seeking crowds. But heading over there requires a certain amount of preparation if you want to enjoy your trip to these unforgettable areas.We have gathered a few prime suggestions for you to keep

Born in 1990, Pat Simmons, Jr. was a full decade past his dad’s heyday. That isn’t uncommon. Most children only learn about their parents’ antics—professional and otherwise—from hand-me-down stories and photographs from glory days. But when your dad’s profession and his work is nearly a household name, the impact is

About a month ago, a friend texted me about a writer from Ashland. He had just been to a reading in Portland from Victor Lodato, and was elated. “His writing has hints of Annie Proulx’s (The Shipping News) descriptive and Augsten Burrough’s (Running With Scissors) wit,” my friend wrote. That

For the past three years, the Messenger has gathered songs from local musicians and presented them as a compilation. It is part of our mission to try and build “community.” This year, we are including 22 different tracks from 22 different musicians. It is a collection as varied as southern

The Vinh Diagram between comic books and feature film fanatics must have a good deal of overlap. Just consider the success of Marvel. But also consider the number of zombie, vampire, Tank Girl and Wimpy Kid movies—and their inspirations. Local filmmaker Ray Robison seems to have a foot firmly in

Billed as a dark comedy, International Falls is, at once, a simple story about a middleage woman clawing her way out of a Midwest rut; but it is simultaneously a complicated, knotted ball of yarn about standup comedians, desperation, emotional fatigue and unsinkable optimism. It is funny, and in equal

  It is tricky to preview the 10-minute film Made Public without trip-wiring any spoiler. The storyline begins with a groom standing alone at the alter. A smattering of friends and family fill in the pews, and the minister sets the shot clock ticks by entering the screen to inform

Looking for an origin story of a hero? Grit picks up the story a young woman Dian, whose village in East Java—and 15 others—were wiped out 13 years ago by a tidal wave of hot, toxic sludge that had been uncorked by a reckless Indonesian company drilling for natural gas

A standout film at the festival is The Rescue List, equally uplifting and depressing. In one single scene, when a young boy recently rescued from slavery is being interviewed about whether he wishes he had never been born, there is more heartfelt emotion and honest resolve than the entire junket