About Us

Your Local News (covering Loganville, Monroe, Walton County and East Gwinnett) is your eyes, ears and voice in the community. It is an online publication that brings you the news, events and community information that is important to you. It is not only a place where you can get information, but also one where you can share information.


Your Local News, P O Box 128, Monroe, GA 30655, Email: Sharon@waltonliving.com, Phone: 678-622-1747: Melanie Ann Jackson, Email Melanieann@waltonliving.com, Phone: 404-375-7881

Meet the Team


Sharon Swanepoel

Sharon began her career in journalism in 1995 as a freelance writer for the Walton Tribune. She expanded that to include the Gwinnett Daily Post in 1997 and in 2001 she joined the Gwinnett Daily Post newsroom as a staff writer/editorial assistant. After a two- year break to work in a business with her husband, she helped launch the Loganville Tribune in 2005, moving to The Walton Tribune in 2010. Sharon’s first real experience with an online publication came in 2011 with the launch of Loganville-Grayson Patch for Patch.com, adding the Monroe-GA Patch in 2012. Monroe Local News was her first venture as a member of the local independent online news community under Your Local News, Inc. media. In 2014 she purchased Walton Living Magazine and launched Loganville Local News in December 2014. In 2017, Monroe Local News, Loganville Local News and the online issue of Walton Living Magazine were combined into one webpage under Yourlocalnewsinc.com.

Sharon first moved to Monroe during the Storm of 1993. She lived in Loganville and Grayson for a few years in between before returning to the local community in 2007. She and her husband have lived in Monroe ever since. Their children all completed their schooling in Walton County and they now have four grandchildren doing the same.

Contact information: Email: sharon@monroelocalnews.com. Phone: 678-622-1747

Co-Publisher/Marketing Director

Melanie Ann Jackson - Co-publisher and Marketing Executive for Monroe Local News and Loganville Local News.

Melanie Ann Jackson

Melanie Ann is a transplant from the Milwaukee, WI area.  After leaving Wisconsin and moving to Tampa Fla in 1979, she continued in the food service industry until 1982 when she was promoted and transferred to Snellville. In 1998, she made the decision to open her own successful restaurant in Social Circle, Simply the Best Cafe.  At the same time, she began working for a local news publication writing community articles and selling advertising to and for local businesses. She became involved with a local radio station, Bostwick Broadcasting (WMOQ) for a 15 year period as an integral part of the weekly “Morning Madness Show” and hosted the “Sunday Night Bluegrass” show. She is published and continues to provide service for local businesses, formally with the Walton Tribune and then with Georgia Connector Magazine.

Melanie Ann studied business and marketing at the University of Wisconsin, she is an Ambassador with the Walton County Chamber of Commerce, is a past president of the Loganville Kiwanis Club and serves as a child advocate with CASA. She enjoys and is active in many community charity events. Being blessed with two remarkable children successful in their own careers, she is also blessed to be the proud grandmother of five amazing and loving grandchildren.

Melanie Ann lives in the Monroe area enjoying the country life with two dogs, two parrots and one very old cat.  She is very proud to be a contributing source to Monroe Local and Loganville Local News and Walton Living Magazine

Contact information:  Email: melanieann@monroelocalnews.com. 404-375-7881


Lori1Lori Duff

Lori has been a resident of Loganville and Walton County since 1999. She is a lawyer and part-time judge, and when she is not writing boring legal briefs, she is a popular local humor columnist and blogger, published author and stand up comedian. She also contributes Legalese, a weekly column, to Monroe Local News that attempts to simplify some of the idiosyncrasies in Georgia’s legal system.

Her writing goal is twofold: to unleash more laughter into the universe, and to dispel the myth that lawyers (and the law) have to be inaccessible and inhuman.

She is married to a retired DeKalb County Police Officer and has two children who attend Walton County Public Schools.

“Humor crosses the great divide of politics and race and religion — I hope to bring to the Monroe Local and our community something we can all laugh at together (i.e. the inane ramblings of my polluted stream of consciousness).”

Columnist – From your paws to mine

emilyEmily Beth Goldstein

Emily Beth Goldstein holds a Bachelor of Science in communications from St. John’s University, NY.

Native New Yorker, migrated from New York to Loganville, Georgia in 2008 to give her daughter with autism a better life.  Emily advocates for autism and is very active in the autism community.

In 2012, Emily began her journey as an animal advocate, assisting pet owners in reuniting with their lost pets thru Facebook.  Since she began reuniting lost pets she has personally reunited hundreds of lost pets with their families. Being an active animal advocate Emily has also been responsible for advocating hard for animals in the shelters set to be euthanized to be saved by rescue groups with great success. She turns no stranger away that contacts her through Facebook for help in searching for a lost loved pet, no matter what state they reside. She works hard bringing families back their lost treasured animals.

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