Kenosha News Photography Staff
Kevin Poirier - Chief Photographer
I started my career in photography working for the high school newspaper while I was an exchange student from France. While attending a community college, I worked at the Traverse City Record-Eagle before completing my studies at Columbia College of Chicago.
I was hired at the Kenosha News as a part-time photographer in 2004. I am now in charge of the photo department as the newspaper’s Chief Photographer.
I have the pleasure of working with a very talented staff that has a lot of experience in the community and great talent. I could not ask for better people to work with.
Since I have started, many things have happened in the community, from a tornado, to great athletic achievements by local students as well as people achieving greatness in their area of expertise. I have had the chance to documents many of these events and share the joy as well as the pain of the people involved.
I want to thank the community for opening their arms to our staff at sometimes-difficult times to help us tell the stories that need to be told.
What began with what I thought would be a short stay at the Kenosha News 26 years ago has become half my life.
Fresh out of Michigan State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism and backed with five years of professional experience at other newspapers, I was ready to make my mark…and earn a steady paycheck.
With this opportunity, I set out to document all things great and small in Kenosha’s day to day life. The best advice passed on to me from veteran photojournalists was “it’s not where you work, it’s what you do where you work that matters most.” All these years later I realize how valuable this approach is.
Believe me, quality photographs don’t just pop out of the camera. It’s the combination of creativity, technical expertise and rapport with a variety of subjects and situations that determine how successful our images are. Sometimes the process is actually more interesting than the photos and other times serendipity makes us look really good.
My work has won a variety of awards on the state, regional and national level, but the recognition I value most is the esteem of my fellow journalists at the Kenosha News and more importantly, the people and community we serve on the pages of “Kenosha’s most interesting daily newspaper,” to borrow an expression from Howard Brown.
Kenosha has been a great place to work and live, but what really inspires me is the life I share with my wife Susy and our children Dora and Beau. Some day I’m going to put together a wonderful photo diary of our lives together…but for now I love living it and taking pictures along the way.
My interest in photography began as a junior at St. Joseph High School when I joined the yearbook staff. The feeling I got from documenting school events, from football games to school dances, was unparalleled.
After high school, my love for photography grew with my passion for the outdoors. I would carry my camera gear on every camping and backpacking trip. The camera allowed me to bring a piece of the experience home.
In 2001, I joined the editorial staff as a newsroom assistant. That’s when I was introduced to the Kenosha News photo staff. Included in my duties was photo archiving. Seeing our community through their eyes was an enlightening experience. I craved to have my own vision, through the lens. Shortly after, I was enrolled in Milwaukee Area Technical College’s photography program.
In 2007, I became a part of the staff I had admired for so long.
Covering issues and events throughout the Kenosha community as a Kenosha News photographer has been rewarding and humbling. Everyday, I learn something new about Kenosha, where I’ve lived for more than 20 years.
Brian Passino is a Kenosha News staff photographer. Brian, married to Lynn Passino, holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Parkside in Art, primarily painting and drawing. Brian’s interests include rebuilding vintage bicycles and astronomy.
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