Lauren Blair

Education & Health Care Reporter

Email: lblair@craigdailypress.com Call: 970-875-1794

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Lauren Blair covers the health care and education beats in Craig and Moffat County. A Colorado native, she graduated in 2005 from Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley, Massachusetts, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in critical social thought.

Blair relocated to Craig from Denver in July of 2014. She has worn many hats in her work life, including that of wedding and travel photographer, blogger, bakery manager, personal chef and instructor for Outward Bound outdoor education programs. Journalism is the perfect avenue for her to indulge her many curiosities and interests, and she relishes the opportunity to grow each day as a journalist, writer, photographer and human being. When not burning the midnight oil in the newsroom, Blair can be found in her kitchen inventing new recipes, pondering the meaning of life with her boyfriend, Yuri Chicovsky, and their two kitties, jamming out to soul tunes and Beatles records, and exploring the far reaches of this beautiful state with camera in hand.

Recent Stories

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Water No. 1 beverage for good health

As spring winds kick up dust and warming temperatures hint at summer heat, it’s important to remember one of the simplest health habits that keeps our bodies going: drink water.

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Fundraiser offers artisan bowls, soups to combat hunger

Handmade bowls, homemade soups and full bellies are the order of the day Friday for the Empty Bowl Fundraiser to benefit St. Michael’s Community Kitchen.

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Poor health habits persist for Moffat County, according to rankings

Moffat County continues to struggle with poor health behaviors such as smoking, drinking. physical inactivity and teen births, according to the 2015 County Health Rankings released last week.

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Sage grouse numbers up in Northwest Colorado

Efforts to protect the greater sage grouse in its 11-state territory are multiplying, according to a report from the Western Governors’ Association released Thursday, and Northwest Colorado’s sage grouse population is seeing significant growth as a result.

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Report shows revenue, volume increases in 2014 for The Memorial Hospital

The Memorial Hospital Board of Trustees learned at Wednesday's board meeting that the hospital saw a $2 million boost in net patient service revenue for 2014 compared to 2013, according to an audit report, and plans to bring in infectious disease expertise via telemedicine.

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High levels of meth found in man who held officers hostage

An autopsy report revealed that James Brent Damon, the man who briefly held two officers hostage in Moffat County on March 9 before being shot and killed, had extremely high levels of methamphetamines in his blood.

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Fewer pregnant moms smoking, more single mothers in Moffat County, Kids Count report says

While fewer moms in Moffat County are smoking during pregnancy, births to single women shot up in 2013, according to data in the 2015 Kids Count in Colorado report released Monday.

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Budget concerns weigh heavily on future of Maybell School at school board meeting

At its monthly work session and meeting Thursday, the Moffat County School District Board of Education discussed the future of Maybell School, ideas for increased cooperation between MCSD and other educational organizations in Craig, and heard updates on statewide assessments.

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Craig students dive into PARCC and CMAS testing; school personnel express concerns

It’s the time of year when students, teachers and school administrators buckle down for another round of statewide assessments. This year, the tests have changed, and some Moffat County School District personnel are grappling with challenges and mixed feelings about the tests.

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Moffat County school lunches get a nutrition boost

Long gone are the days of potato chips, ice cream and soda in school lunch rooms. Healthier school lunches have been a topic of national conversation during National Nutrition Month, and Moffat County School District is taking big steps to bring its own menus to the next level.

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Second-grader Jayden Evenson shows off his invention, the "Party Popper," at Sandrock Elementary School's Invention Convention Thursday afternoon. Evenson's creation utilized a toy car propelled down the track to trigger a needle that popped the balloon waiting at the end. Second-graders demonstrated their devices to teachers and peers, using their knowledge of simple machines such as pulleys, levers and wheels.

Vermillion Creek feeds Vermillion Falls near Browns Park in northwestern Moffat County flows steadily on Tuesday. The falls is one of many scenic destinations for visitors to the area.

Certified public accountant Shaun Johnson, right, from Dingus, Zarecor & Associates, presents The Memorial Hospital's audit report to the Board of Trustees at its monthly meeting Wednesday night. Johnson said the hospital's net patient service revenue increased by more than $2 million in 2014 compared with 2013, in large part due to an increase in patient volume. Next to Johnson, TMH Controller Denise Arola listens while interim Chief Financial Officer Tim Howard studies the report.

AJ Johnson, 4, gets his hearing checked at the kids health fair Thursday at the Early Childhood Center in Craig by school nurse Karie Fisher and her mother, Dianne Johnson. Children from birth to five received free developmental screenings in hearing, vision, dental, cognition, fine and gross motor skills, speech and language, and social and emotional skills. Sponsored by Moffat County School District Child Find, Northwest Colorado Visiting Nurse Association, Northwest Dental Coalition, Connections 4 Kids and Craig Lions Club, the fair coincided with the release of the 2015 Kids Count in Colorado report this week, which compiles analyzes data to assess the overall health and well-being of children in Colorado.

School board member Sue Voloshin shares an update with the board Thursday night about Ridgeview Elementary School, including news that fifth-graders Logan Hafey and Kallie Smith were featured on 9News and CBS4 News for Liberty Day at the Capitol in Denver. She also shared that Ridgeview's literacy week was a success, during which the school invited moms, dads and grandparents to read to their kids at school over breakfast treats.

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