About Town Square Buzz
TownSquareBuzz.com is an independently owned online community website based in McKinney, Texas (30 miles north of Dallas). Our mission is to serve as the community watchdog, collaborating with the community to share information and promote discussion around news, events, and issues in and around the area. We are expanding our investigative coverage while many media outlets are cutting back. We aim to tell the whole story through written articles, videos, photos, podcasts and offline community events.
TownSquareBuzz.com brings residents of McKinney, one of the fastest growing communities in the country, together in an online environment. TownSquareBuzz.com seeks to provide you with a way to connect, communicate and create with the community at large.
Our goal is to build lasting relationships with the community by maintaining the highest standard of integrity in local news coverage and all of our endeavors.
Originally founded as McKinneySports.net in August 2005, the site expanded to include news coverage in August 2006 and has expanded to become TownSquareBuzz. Owned by Bado LLC, the site is managed by and for residents of McKinney and the surrounding area, utilizing a combination of paid staff and volunteers.
Sports Writer: Mike Bruu
Mike Bruu is the sports writer for TSB. Growing up playing sports like baseball and basketball, as well as watching countless hours of sports on television, Mike has developed a strong passion for sports and enjoys talking about it daily. Born and raised in McKinney, Mike graduated from McKinney Boyd High School in 2010. He is currently attending Collin College and hopes to one day be a sports journalist and host his own sports radio show.
Sales Account Manager: Megan Hickman
As the Account Manager at TSB, Megan Hickman makes sure every TSB partner feels like part of the family, fostering a positive relationship between the TSB community and local businesses.
Hickman lives with her husband in the historic district of McKinney and has been a McKinney resident for nine years. Hickman has a Masters in Social Work and uses her compassion for helping people in every business relationship and with every TSB collaborator. In her spare time, Megan enjoys the outdoors, Italian food and spending time with family and friends.
Director of Special Projects: Bryan Criswell
Director of Special Projects; Director TSB Foundation
As Director of Special Projects and TownSquareBuzz (TSB) contributing writer, Criswell publishes content to inform TSB readers about news, events and issues in and around McKinney to build upon the role of TSB as McKinney’s one-stop shop for news and information.
Criswell is also Director of the TownSquareBuzz Foundation, which engages McKinney residents and raises community awareness about the unique needs of veterans, military families and service members.
Criswell brings more than 15 years of experience working with federal, state and local governments, non-profit organizations, the media, and the public with expertise including project management; grant administration; advocacy and public outreach/ awareness strategies. Criswell most recently worked at the Executive Office of the Mayor in Washington, DC managing multi-million dollar projects serving the city.
Criswell relocated to McKinney in January 2011 from the Washington DC area and is a graduate of the University of Maryland, College Park.
Reporter: Ben Lane
As beat reporter, Ben Lane covers the McKinney city government, the police and fire departments, the McKinney courts and the McKinney schools.
Ben has spent his entire life in Texas. He was born and raised in Dallas and is new to McKinney. He spent several years in sales and marketing before he decided that he wanted his life to take a different path. He always had an interest in writing, going back to his days on the high school newspaper in Richardson.
In 2009, Ben decided to return to school and pursue a degree in journalism. He graduated from the University of North Texas in 2012. Ben is a sports fanatic (supporting all the Dallas teams through good times and bad), a music lover, a decent cook, an avid reader, a married guy, and the father of a furry dog son. He may also be addicted to Twitter.
Ben is tremendously excited to join TownSquareBuzz.com and the McKinney community as well. He plans to serve the people of McKinney with integrity and honor.
Meet the TownSquareBuzz.com Staff
President/Founder: Angela Bado
Angie founded McKinneyNews.net, now TownSquareBuzz.com, in 2005, first focusing on high school sports news, then expanding to become the hyper-local news and information source for McKinney. A former educator, Angie worked three years as Administrative Assistant to the Campus Coordinator and Head Football Coach at McKinney North High School prior to founding the company. While at North, Angie’s passion for news fueled a desire to be more involved with the world of journalism. She has put her leadership skills to work as founder of TownSquareBuzz, allowing her the opportunity to blend her love of education and communication with the business world while sharing it with the community.
A McKinney resident for 22 years, Angie has spent time in leadership roles in the many volunteer organizations. Currently, the Chair of the Board for the McKinney Convention and Visitors Bureau, and past chair of the Women's Alliance of McKinney, she has chaired various parent groups at the ACT Academy, Glen Oaks and Valley Creek Elementary Schools, Dowell Middle School and at McKinney North High School. When McKinney North opened in 2000, she was directly involved in creating, organizing and chairing the PTSO, the Bulldog Athletic Club and the Gridiron Club.
An avid traveler and reader, Angie also enjoys spending time with her three children, playing tennis and labels herself a foodie.
Director of Marketing and Community Engagement: Matthew Bado
Director of Marketing and Community Engagement
Matt Bado is Director of Marketing and Community Engagement at TownSquareBuzz. Bado brings nearly 10 years of communications expertise to help spread the word about this unique online community. Originally from McKinney, Bado spent the last 10 years living in Washington, D.C. as a strategic communications consultant. His most recent role was at Booz Allen Hamilton, a global strategy and technology firm, where he worked with clients in the federal government to integrate social media tools into their communications and public engagement strategies. Bado is thrilled to return to McKinney and be a part of the TownSquareBuzz team. Bado graduated from Bethany College in West Virginia with a degree in Communications and received his MA from the Graduate School of Political Management at The George Washington University. Follow Bado on Twitter @mbado.
Editor: Steve Kirk
Steve spent 15 years as an editor and writer in the newspaper business, including stints at The Florida Times-Union in Jacksonville, Fla., The Birmingham (Ala.) News, and The State (in Columbia, S.C.). He moved to the Lone Star State in 2006, and has served as an editor and writer for McKinneyNews.net since that time. A 1991 graduate of the University of Alabama's College of Communication in Tuscaloosa, Ala., Steve is a native of Huntsville, Ala.
Lifestyle Editor: Michele Stevens Bernard
Nothing pleases Michele Stevens Bernard more than shining a light on the people, places and things that make her hometown McKinney, Texas "unique by nature". "If it encourages positive change, warms the heart, or makes one laugh out loud, that's the story I want to cover," says Michele. Away from the keyboard, Michele can be found behind the lense of a camera, snapping away, road-tripping with friends and family, checking out various entertainment and restaurant scenes, or if the weather is fair, taking in a game at the nearest baseball field she can find. While Money Magazine voted McKinney the 2nd best place to live in the United States in 2012, Michele maintains her belief that McKinney is in fact the best place to live. Period. If you or someone you know has a story to share with Michele, drop her a line at email@example.com.