This feels like home.

I popped up from my nest of pillows and books in the back of the family station wagon and announced, “I’m going to live in Missouri when I grow up.”

I made that declaration at age nine as my family traveled from our home in northeastern Oklahoma to Branson for a vacation. I was taken in, suddenly and completely, by the splendor of the Ozark Mountains, the thick forests, Table Rock Lake, and I was ready to pack up and move right then. I suspect my family, with its deep Oklahoma and Texas roots, thought my infatuation with Missouri was a phase I would get over.

It wasn’t, and I didn’t.

Editor-in-chief Sandy Selby

It took another nine years, but I made my move to Missouri for college, and I have been here ever since. That captivated little girl still lives in me, and her joy is bubbling over as I embark on the ultimate Missouri adventure as editor-in-chief of Missouri Life magazine.

I’ve had the pleasure of writing and editing for this magazine in the past, so I anticipate I’ll be able to slip into a new rhythm with ease. Actually, it is the return to an old rhythm because I’ve been at the helm of magazines before. My heart leaps at a well-constructed sentence or a clever turn of phrase. I find the rules of grammar and style fascinating. Friends have learned the hard way never to ask me to edit something for them unless they really mean it.

There could be no better job than this one for an editor who loves her Missouri life! Over the decades, my passion for this state has continued to grow. As a history lover, I have immersed myself in Missouri’s stories and know there are so many more mind-blowing things to learn about our state’s eventful past. My husband and I live in an 1860s house in the National Historic Landmark village of Arrow Rock, a haven for history buffs. Although we aren’t inclined toward long, distant vacations, we can’t get enough of our Missouri day trips. There’s beauty to see and history to learn in every town.

Now I’ll get to call those day trips “research” as I hunt for the untold stories of Missouri. For that, I will need your help. Tell me about the extraordinary Missourians you know. Where are those remarkable, off-the-beaten-path destinations Missouri Life readers need to know about? Share those stories that didn’t make it into our history textbooks. Tell me why you love your community as much as I love mine.

My new job is the realization of a dream that started on a long-ago car trip. For decades, Missouri Life has been guiding readers to the best our state has to offer. Its continued excellence is my priority, and together, we’ll meet the people and visit the places that make this state an incredible place to call home.