Editor's Desk: It's hard to resist allure of an interesting personality
Sometimes, it really is true: The ending is actually the beginning.Each month, any number of McKnight's readers prove it. Upon receiving their magazine, they promptly flip to the back pages first. That's OK with us. Really. Many magazines stick a particularly juicy plum inside their back cover, and we're no different. Readership studies have shown that a significant percentage of American readers scan their magazines back-to-front.
McKnight's readers always have a treat waiting inside the back cover – our monthly Profile feature. It is one of the most popular parts of the magazine, and that's saying a lot.
Take this issue's Profile subject, for example. Rick Miller is the boyish, lanky new chairman of the American Health Care Association. If you've attended an AHCA function and he also was present, you had to have wondered what's up with the 7-foot-1 guy with the easy smile. When you get to the end of this magazine (if you haven't been there already), you'll know.
Although nobody is an "automatic" to be in the prime "Profile" space, Miller was an easy choice. He stands out from the crowd (yes, for more than one reason) and he could have a profound effect on the job that you do. That is basically the criteria for any of our Profile subjects. Whether they're senators, researchers or caregivers, they are people who have either impacted your careers already or very well could in the future.
Not all of our readers are warm to that concept, especially if we feature controversial figures such as union head honcho Andy Stern (January) or staffing researcher Charlene Harrington (August).
Yet, who was quoted in a now infamous New York Times story in September that has put providers on a hot seat with lawmakers from the Atlantic to the Pacific? That's right, both Stern and Harrington. It will be a major story for a while, too (see pages 1 and 4 for details).
Interestingly, a couple of other past Profile subjects also made that New York Times report on equity investors in long-term care: investment CEOs Arnold Whitman (June), a marathoner, and Ron Silva (April 2006), a guy who touts his bed-making skills.
These intriguing people grieve, play, enjoy their families – just as all of us do. And that's the point. We want you to come to learn more about what makes a person tick. That person just might have a better model of caregiving, a desire to purchase your company, or an urge to regulate you stronger. Sometimes it might seem like one of the last things you need to know. But then again, it might really be the first.