Meet Izzy, Celebrity Newspaper Personality of the Year

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Editor’s Note: Bethany Erickson is the digital editor of People diaries, our sister publication. We asked him to recognize the recent “Person of the Year” newspaper article. It’s a solid story. Here is Bethany.


Every year, People diaries picks a person of the year for Park Cities and Preston Hollow, and then we feature them in the January issues of Park Cities People and The people of Preston Hollow.

But for some reason, 2021 seemed like a good year to do something different. Maybe it was because we seemed a bit stuck, you know, with the pandemic, or maybe we just like to create more work, but looking for a new way to tell the stories of really interesting people seemed like a big deal. imperative.

When we started planning for People of the Year issues in September, our goal was to create an opportunity to interact and engage more with our readers. Out of that came our Readers’ Choice of the Year, which would be featured alongside the Editorial Team’s Picks.

We asked readers to come up with their picks, and then we took those nominations and put them on a ballot using a company called PolCo. We expected a slow start – it was the holiday season, to begin with, and it was also a whole new venture. We ended up getting about three times as many votes as we thought.

And at the end, Isabelle “Izzy” Martin, a student at the Dallas Episcopal School, has been chosen by our readers as Person of the Year.. Izzy is a preteen who fights with osteosarcoma, a cancer that starts in the cells that make up her bones. Doctors caught her cancer after she broke her femur (which isn’t exactly an easy bone to break) during a dance class (it’s not an activity that typically breaks the femurs). Although he’s been on grueling treatment regimens at a time when it’s not easy to be immunocompromised, Izzy leads several philanthropic efforts, including one for Austin Street Center and an osteosarcoma research fund.

Luckily, one of Izzy’s classmates is NBC DFW’s daughter Meredith Land. Meredith was ready with a story that aired on two news broadcasts on December 17th – the day we announced our Personalities of the Year. She has beaten headliners like Mark Cuban and Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins.

People diaries

The following week, when the problem hit the displays and mailboxes, CBS 11 picked up the story and introduced Izzy that week.

December – ask anyone in the news business – is usually that grueling wave of activity where you try to end a year and factor in the days off when the news doesn’t exactly take days off. .

But the Person of the year the stories are always just this time (for me, anyway) to breathe and get to know amazing people.

Our three personalities of the year: Lyda Hill (Cities Park), Cindy Brinker Simmons (Preston Hollow) and Izzy, were absolutely opportunities to stop and reflect on our best natures – those who are generous and tenacious and who courageously face adversity with compassion.

I hope you will take the time to meet all three of them.

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