by Julia Barnes
When you first meet Rhashad Pittman, you are amazed by his calm, cool, collective demeanor and may view him as being in a reflective state of mind. But rest assured that beneath the cool exterior and as a gifted journalist, Rhashad’s creative juices are constantly churning and he is indeed reflecting on creating the next great story that will engage and delight all who have the pleasure of reading his work.
For the last 4 ½ years, Rhashad Pittman, has been an integral part of the Latino Times Family working as Freelance Reporter dedicated to bringing Latino Times readers the best in class reporting. Rhashad, has penned countless articles on a variety of topics that have ranged from highlighting local Political Leaders to focusing on Small Business ownership as well as the challenges faced by Migrant Farm Workers.
His significant contributions over the last few years have made him an invaluable member of the Latino Times Team and, it is with sadness that we announce that Rhashad will be leaving us this month for a new opportunity as the Publication’s and Community Coordinator at San Jose State University. There he will continue to impact a huge number of students in his new role.
Although, we are sorry to see Rhashad leave us, we are excited that he is pursuing his goal of continually bettering yourself and your position in life to achieve your ultimate dream. This dream was instilled in him at a very young age by his parents and grandparents.
Born in St. Louis, Missouri and the oldest of three brothers, as a young man, Rhashad was not only inspired by his Mother, a Paralegal and his Father, an Elevator Mechanic but by his Grandfather as well all of whom emphasized the importance of education. “They kept me going” he reflected, “What is important is to focus on one goal and strive for that goal, recognizing that things take longer than you may think, but never giving up. Focus on one day at time”.
It was at the early age of 16 when Rhashad wrote his first poem and realized that writing was what he was born to do because he so enjoyed “loving the flow of the words and telling a story”. From that point on Rhashad never looked back and continued to pursue a career in Journalism and as a Communication’s Specialist.
Upon graduating from the University of Missouri in St. Louis in 2002, he went onto attend the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California at Berkeley. From there, Rhashad landed a position as the Staff Writer at the Stockton Record, Manteca Bureau, covering City Council, City Affairs and Crime.
Desiring to expand his horizons, in 2006, Rhashad became the Media Relations Coordinator at the University of Pacific, managing UOP’s news and social media outlets. Subsequently, in 2007, Rhashad came to Latino Times as a Freelance Writer where over the last few years we have all benefitted from his inspiring articles.
When asked about his experience at Latino Times, he stated, “It has been a great enjoyment writing for Latino Times. I loved the people that I met in the community. I loved the fact that I was embraced by the Latino community and welcomed with open arms.”
Rhashad went onto add, “This has been a great opportunity and the staff has been very supportive as well. I also want to thank Andrew who even though I am not Latino, took a chance on me and could have received a lot of potential backlash, yet still gave me this opportunity to write for the newspaper. I have been so fortunate to see this publication blossom and flourish and have continued success and growth.”
Latino Times Founder and Publisher, Andrew Ysiano, also shared similar sentiments as he reflected on Rhashad’s tenure and relayed, “It has been an honor to work with Rhashad. He is one of the most talented writers that I have had the pleasure to come to know. I think that I turned him into a part time Latino in the process and wish him the best because he is the best.”
In his new position as the Publication’s and Community Coordinator with San Jose State University, Rhashad’s goal is to continue to learn, grow and contribute to San Jose State’s outreach providing better opportunities and enhancing the overall program for all students.
When asked if he had any words of wisdom for aspiring writers or young people in general he was eager to encourage by saying, “Get rid of all of your negativity in your life because life is already hard enough; even if it is someone that you really care about. Never give up on achieving your dream, because just when you are about to give up, it will happen.”
Rhashad , on behalf of everyone at Latino Times, thank you for your amazing dedication over the past few years and know that you will always hold a special place in our hearts. We wish you much success in continuing to achieve your dreams and your many new adventures on the horizon.
Vaya con dios.
by Julia Barnes