Hometown: Little Silver, NJ
Birthday: August 13
Amy Byrnes has lived in Monmouth County for over 30 years and loves that there are always new things to discover here. Her path to Patch was as direct as trying to find a parking spot at the Monmouth Mall on Black Friday. A Red Bank Catholic High School grad who majored in journalism at the University of Delaware, Amy helped launch Mirabella magazine as a member of its merchandising department. After starting a family, she decided to get back to journalism and worked for a number of area community newspapers like The Hub, the Asbury Park Press "Red Bank Reporter," and the Monmouth Journal. This summer she got to go for a ride in the Horizon blimp down the coast on assignment and decided that getting paid to do cool stuff is excellent. Most recently, Amy has reported on small business issues online for BusinessNewsDaily.com.
When she's not out playing Brenda Starr, Amy has found herself at times serving as a PTO president and Board of Education member and occasional brownie baker and perennial Girl Scout leader. She also manages the ever-changing moods of three teenagers, a heartbreakingly-sweet 8 year-old, a super-hairy golden retriever and a cat she found half dead in her garage last year who now stares imperiously from her perch on the couch and owns a Snuggie.
At Patch, we promise always to approach the news as objectively as possible and adhere to the principles of good journalism. However, we also acknowledge that true impartiality is impossible because human beings have beliefs. So in the spirit of simple honesty, our policy is to encourage our editors to reveal their beliefs to the extent they feel comfortable.
My dad has often cautioned me that in the interest of preserving relationships, it is best to refrain from discussing either religion or politics. This came on the heels of the 2000 election when my mother and I stopped talking for over a month. That being said, I will admit to being fairly liberal socially (I just believe everyone deserves a real chance) but concerned about too much governmental intervention mostly because it is so tainted by special interests and partisanship.
This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness. ~Dalai Lama
Trouble is, 12 years of Catholic school has given me a complex relationship with organized religion. I am raising my children Catholic and often find peace at church (and in yoga class), but I must admit that I am not above bribing them with a trip out to dinner after mass on Saturday nights to ease their own (and my) religious ambiguity.
Local Hot-Button Issues
Taxes, the closing of Fort Monmouth, a proposed cell phone tower for Tinton Falls, school budgets, ongoing construction at Routes 35 and 36 intersection. Did I mention taxes?