Rebecca was born just a couple of years shy of being a baby boomer, and was raised on depression-era values. The youngest of eight kids, she inherited a true-grit work ethic from her single mom who lost her husband to a heart attack when Rebecca was 9 years old. Her mother and siblings made their living working together on a 4-acre micro farm in Salt Lake City, Utah.
When Rebecca was 17 years old, she finished her senior year of high school at night school so she could work full-time as a secretary during the day to help support herself and her mother. “I actually enjoyed that,” said Rebecca. “I felt like I was accomplishing a lot. I knew I was earning the money to help at home, yet I was still finishing high school too, and I paid for my first car! I had to do that; the only way I could get a job was if I drove myself to work and my mother couldn’t drive, so I had to find a way to do it.”
Rebecca received an art scholarship for college, but didn’t pursue it to continue helping her mother. She says her confidence came from having to work hard from an early age. “I picked raspberries to buy my own school clothes, but nobody gave it a second thought about kids working back then – that’s what they did, that’s how they grew up. It taught them responsibility and gave them a sense of worth.”
Charles R. Kennedy, Rebecca’s husband of 25 years, taught her entrepreneurship and encouraged her to conceive and pursue her own business dream, The Silver Lining News, at a time when women were not predominately in the workplace. Together, they raised two children until Charles’ death when Rebecca ventured into the insurance field.
Rebecca still lives in Salt Lake and is now 26 years into her second marriage with Leonard McConnell, and shares her ongoing SLN dream with him. Leonard was instrumental in building SLN’s initial presence on the Web, and now, he serves as the daily quote editor.
Rebecca believes the key to success is accomplishing one little extra thing every day in some area of your life. “That’s not to say you don’t have those days when you pull out all stops to work yourself to the bone. But the important thing is that you do something a little more each day to move forward rather than just tread water.”
Linda was born and raised in Salt Lake City, Utah and became a journalist in high school when she took journalism as an elective to an English class. When her journalism teacher, also the school newspaper editor, noticed Linda was hooked, she appointed Linda feature editor of the state award-winning publication.
“That’s the teacher that changed my life forever,” said Linda. “Since those positions were appointed, not applied for, I felt a huge sense of responsibility to keep up the paper’s quality and status. After that year on the newspaper, I never gave it a second thought about my career path; I was going to be a journalist. It was like recognizing my life calling.”
Linda graduated from the University of Utah with a BA degree in Mass Communications, where she also served as a writer on the University of Utah Collegiate newspaper. She served internships in Senator Orrin Hatch’s press office, at United Stations Radio Network and KUTV. She reported for several publications in Utah, including Utah Business magazine where she was associate editor, and managing editor for Sandy Style. Linda’s work has earned awards from the Society of Professional Journalists, Utah Headliners Association and Marcom International.
“Now, my Mom says, I am prepared to help her take The Silver Lining News into the future!” says Linda. “I couldn’t feel more responsibility than I did that day in high school when my journalism teacher gave me my first assignment as a reporter. But this is something even more special than that life-changing moment – this is about my family, and personal and professional histories coming together for a great mission.”
In addition to raising her daughter, Linda enjoys spoiling her dog and taking her on long walks near her home in Bountiful, Utah. She believes the key to success is gaining the maturity to finally recognize that your mom did know a thing or two, after all.
I cover mostly food stories for The Silver Lining News. With that in mind, you should know that I am a food snob. And an unapologetic one. I’m always on the hunt for good food, meaning it not only has pure flavor and original flare, and its taste per bite outweighs its calorie per bite, but good food is usually served on, sandwiched between, smothered with, and sometimes even deep-fried in a meaningful story.
In addition to teaching me how to clean my room and control my temper, my mother taught me to identify herbs in her pot roast and potatoes and to decipher the difference between Nestle and Ghirardelli chocolate. Didn’t everyone’s mom do that? I’m pretty sure I learned how to read just so I could follow a recipe. One of my earliest memories is me and my family mixing, rolling, baking and packaging gingersnaps for a summer vacation. It’s no wonder I’m unhealthily (though very happily) attached to the sound of my Bosch mixer, the aroma of fresh bread and the late summer-sight of soon-to-be peach pies hanging on trees.
If you need any more convincing of my passion for food, or have anything else to share, please feel free to contact me. In the meantime, I’ll be on the hunt for more Delicacies by Default, Sunnyside Up recipes and other meaningful and delicious connections between food and we humans who eat it.