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editor colorado

Official publication of the Colorado Press Association / / Vol. LXXXIII, No. 11

Inside: Hildner leaves impression on Pueblo sports and women. PAGE 7

November 2012

Council aims to fight for right to know By Don Lindley Public rights of access to government meetings and records in Colorado have suffered in recent years because the media, the traditional defenders of these rights, have been swept up in an unprecedented transformation that has diminished its resources. To help fill this void, leaders of the Colorado Freedom of Information Council decided

CFOIC’s goal: Advocate for government transparency earlier this year to pursue a more ambitious educational, advocacy and fundraising mission aimed at protecting our right to know. CFOIC sought and received 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status and then applied for a $25,000 grant from the National Freedom of Information Coalition. (The NFOIC — www. — is a nonpartisan alliance of state open government groups and freedom of information supporters. Its activities include awarding grants that support growth of state open government organizations.) Last month, the NFOIC board approved the grant application and now the CFOIC must come up

with $25,000 in matching funds. To receive the grant and shore up defense of the First Amendment and rights of access, it needs support from everyone in Colorado who believes that basic standards of government transparency are at the core of American democracy and government accountability.

Since its inception in 1997, CFOIC subsisted on modest dues paid by members and the work of a network of volunteers. Because of limited resources, its activities have been confined primarily to sponsoring occasional open-government community forums, presenting annual awards to leading open government advocates in Colorado, and providing briefs or testimony in CFOIC on page 8

Tonsing takes over top spots at two papers By Sara Waite Journal-Advocate Managing Editor Julie Tonsing has been named as the new publisher for both The Fort Morgan Times and the Sterling Journal-Advocate. She has been the business manager and later publisher of The Times since 2009. Julie Tonsing has been named the new publisher of The Fort Morgan Times and the Sterling Journal-Advocate. Tonsing will be taking on the role on Nov. 5 after David McClain, president and publisher of the Journal-Advocate from 1995 to 2006 and since 2008, retires on Nov. 2. She will be adding the Sterling title to her current duties as publisher of The Times, where she has worked since 2009. Prior to that, Tonsing was at the Journal-Advocate for 20 years, where she says she “grew up in the newspaper business.” When she left Sterling, she was serving as the JA’s business manager and financial manager for Eastern Colorado Publishing Company, which includes both the Sterling and

Photo by Greg Luft/Colorado State University Nearly 1,500 high school students attended the Colorado High School Press Association annual Journalism Day, hosted for 11 years by Colorado State University. More than 30 industry experts shared their knowledge on topics ranging from law and ethics and creating award-winning yearbooks, to photography for dummies and building a social media brand. See the J-Day photo spread on pages 4 and 5.

Gathering for J-Day

PUBLISHER on page 8

The innovation mission in action

Marketing pro joins SYNC2

Last year’s North American Innovation Mission, sponsored by the Local Media Association Foundation, took participants to numerous stops over the course of the intense one-week study tour and afterwards, LMA made a comprehensive report available. Suzanne Schlicht, COO of The World Company, was one of the I.M. participants and shared the numerous lessons and follow up report with colleagues throughout her company, including the team at The Steamboat Pilot & Today, the oldest business in beautiful Steamboat Springs, Colorado, They wasted no time in taking action on

SYNC2 Media welcomes Senior had the ability to help them in ways Outside Sales Consultant, Mike Macthat I couldn’t,” MacDonald said. Donald. Mike brings nearly 15 years “For print account executives today of print and digital marketing experito have additional products in their ence to SYNC2. portfolio, they truly are the one-stop He is a graduate of Colorado State shop for their clients.” University with a B.A. in Consumer Following his time at the Camera, Sciences. He spent five years as a sales he became the Director of Sales and consultant at the Daily Camera in Marketing for an online consulting Boulder helping newspaper custom- MacDonald firm, which operated legal-related ers to grow their businesses through internet directories and software the development of solid marketing programs. development. In his digital consulting role, he “When I worked in print, I know my clients worked with thousands of legal service prowere interested in digital and, at the time, I was viders to help them better manage their busisimply losing their dollars to other firms who SYNC2 on page 6

Reprinted with permission from LMA Today.

each of the key takeaways from the 2011 Innovation Mission report and made accomplishing them in ways suitable for their market a top priority. As Ad Director Meg Boyer puts it, “The first Pilot came off the presses in 1886, and we haven’t stopped innovating since!” She and her team have worked hard to turn the lessons from that report into reality and their efforts are paying off in many ways including being named “Best Innovators” in the 2012 LMA Advertising & Promotions Contest. It’s also paying off in revenue – through mid-2012, overall advertising revenue is up over last year by almost 4%. What they are doing with the valuable lesINNOVATION on page 8


colorado editor

November 2012

News is at the heart of Democracy colorado editor ISSN #162-0010 USPS # 0122-940 Vol. LXXXIII, Issue 11 November 2012 Colorado Editor is the official publication of the Colorado Press Association and is published monthly at 1336 Glenarm Place. Denver, CO 80204-2115 p: 303-571-5117 f: 303-571-1803

Subscription rate: $10 per year, $1 single copy Staff Samantha Johnston Publisher/Executive Director Brian Clark Design Editor Board of Directors OFFICERS President Brenda Brandt The Holyoke Enterprise Vice President Bryce Jacobson Craig Daily Press Treasurer Terri House The Pagosa Springs SUN Secretary Keith Cerny Alamosa Valley Courier DIRECTORS Mark Drudge Cortez Journal Bart Smith The Greeley Tribune Laurena Mayne Davis The Daily Sentinel David McClain Sterling Journal-Advocate Paula Murphy Trinidad Times Independent Curtis Hubbard The Denver Post Matt Lubich The Johnstown Breeze Periodical postage paid at Denver, CO 80202. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Colorado Editor 1336 Glenarm Place Denver, CO 80204-2115

I am privileged and honored to be taking the reins as president of the National Newspaper Association. Across America, citizens depend on their community newspapers for the news of their neighbors, their kids, schools, their communities, their local merle government. baranczyk In the vast majority of small nna cities and towns, president newspapers – print, e-editions, html, utilizing audio and video – are the only source of news. And if readers did not have newspapers, democracy in these communities would falter. Democracy cannot long survive without the news. It is the news – fair, accu-

rate, objective, timely and complete – that citizens rely on to make decisions on elections, on democracy, for their communities, their states and their country. NNA continues to battle the U.S. Postal Service on behalf of community newspapers. Eliminating Saturday delivery, closing rural offices and closing processing centers have challenged community newspapers the past two years. And now the Valassis negotiated service agreement and the postal service’s Every Door Direct Mail program are daggers aimed at the heart of the newspaper industry. What is especially galling for community newspaper publishers is the fact that the local newspaper is typically the postal service’s biggest customer in a given town or city. Just as Colorado Press Association is our voice in Denver, NNA is community newspapers’ voice and representative in Washington. To those Colorado newspapers that are already NNA members,

thank you. To those who are not, I ask you to join. Membership in NNA builds our base, our foundation which means we can continue to be a force on postal matters, legislation before Congress, educating newspaper staff, protecting public notice and enhancing, promoting and furthering this industry. And a broader base gives NNA greater strength before federal government agencies and in the national media, as well as a stronger presence on Capitol Hill. Second, Colorado newspaper representative should plan to attend the We Believe in Newspapers Leadership Conference in Washington, March 13-15. The conference is an opportunity to deliver a message to our congressional representatives, to tell our elected officials what’s important to community newspapers. Two years ago NNA launched the We Believe in Newspapers campaign. It is aimed at affirming newspapers’ roles in communities we serve through our editorial and

opinion pages, columns, advertising and self promotion. Our message is newspapers are the conscience, the heart and soul, the heartbeat, the source and voice of democracy of our communities. If we believe in newspapers, and we do, we must tell our communities, the industry we are a part of, and the world what we believe and why.

was with the building of that school in 1918. The town of Flagler had other newspapers of publications as far back as 1888. “The Weekly Register,” published at Malowe. There is no record of its demise. The Flagler Progress was the first permanent newspaper in 1908 which William (Will) Borland bought out in 1918 and merged out the Flagler Progress and made Flagler a one newspaper town with The Flagler News. There has been seven owner/publishers of The Flagler News in the past 100 years. The three longest owner/ publishers were the last three publishers, combining 82 years and counting. Clyde and Ruth Coulter hold the honor of the longest longevity serving the community for 45 and a half years, from July 1, 1948 to  January 1, 1993. That feat will not be

matched. Tom and Jean Bredehoft are going on their 20th year in 2013 buying out the Coulters on January 1, 1993. Twyman (T) Guard and his wife, Grace were at the reigns from 1931 to July of 1948. Edwards Krutchens founded The Flagler News in 1913. J.D. Heiney bought him out in 1914 and H.E. Wetherell bought out Heiney in 1914. An April 26,

1915 edition of The Flagler News announced that the next issue would be published by William H. Borland of Brush. Will had a son named Hal who would later go on to be a world renowned author. Throughout the year The Flagler News will be bringing you stories and pictures of the past 100 years.

Baranczyk is the fifth Colorado journalist to serve as NNA president. Predecessors were: George E. Hosmer, The Herald, Fort Morgan, 1914; Guy U. Hardy, The Daily Record, Canon City, 1918; Don Hardy, The Daily Record, Canon City, 1965; and Bob Sweeney, Villager Newspapers, Denver, 2003. Baranczyk is president of Arkansas Valley Publishing Co. and editor and publisher of The Mountain Mail in Salida. AVP publishes The Chaffee County Times, Buena Vista; The Herald Democrat, Leadville; and The Park County Republican and Fairplay Flume in Bailey.

The Flagler News turns 100 Reports of train wrecks, blizzards, floods, fires, tornadoes, sports state championships, parades, new business openings, old businesses closing, socials, deaths, births, wedding announcements, droughts, bountiful harvests, car accidents, homesteaders, meetings, The Flagler News has covered them all. Now for the past 100 years.  Without a question the biggest story being the tragic air show tragedy that occurred September 15, 1951 just a few years after Clyde and Ruth Coulter took over the reigns as owner/publishers on July 1, 1948. The Coulters had the distinction of having to report on the worst air show accident in U.S. history right in their back yard. It was September 15, 1951, when the small town was stunned by an air show tragedy. Twenty dead; 30 injured in worst air show accident in U.S. history—Crash brings horror to peaceful Flagler as stunt plane hits crowd at show; 20 dead. 17 hurt— Small town stunned by air show tragedy. Just a few of the headlines that appeared in different papers around the area.  The Coulters again had to cover the burning of one of the towns main buildings, when the school at the end of north Main burned one October night in 1951.  The Newspaper and the Coulters would play an intricate part in the passing of a bond issue to build a new school just as the newspaper


#HN?LJLCM? Community Newspaper covering Phillips County in NE Colorado

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colorado editor

November 2012

guest column

guest letter

Digital age’s dirty secret

From Josh Awtry, editor, Fort Collins Coloradoan

By Chris Dickey This column is for you, oldfashioned readers of the printed page. Did you know you might just be considered the environmentally conscious consumers of media? Please allow me to explain. For some time now there’s been a growing body of evidence suggesting drawbacks to our on-line-all-the-time society: Does Facebook make us lonlier? Can grown-ups communicate beyond 140 characters at a time? Are our kids’ brains being short-circuited? That sort of thing. But we like to think that our global obsession with all things digital is at least a “green� activity, unlike, say, off-shore oil drilling. Natuarly, however, nothing is without consequences – especially obsessions. The New York Times recently completed a one-year study on the power demands that keep the seemingly infinite amount of data – emails, texts, movie and music downloads, credit card transactions, Twitter feeds, etc. – flowing through cyber space. (That a media company took so much time to perform actual journalism in our age of round-the-clock sound bites is new in itself, but I digress). The results of the study are not pretty. Behind the scenes of this glorified digital frenzy are behemoth “data centers,� warehouses filled with stacks upon stacks of computer servers – which are beefed-up desktop computers that process unbelievable quantities of information. Data centers easily number in the “tens of thousands,� the Times reports. They’re growing at an exponential rate; “federal� data centers in the U.S. along grew from 432 in 1998 to 2,094 in 2010. And they suck up electricity like a death-row inmate chain-smoking cigarettes. One industry expert estimates that individual data centers use as much energy as it takes to power a medium-sized town. To envision this on a local scale, that’s like Gunnison Rising annexations popping up all over the place, yet with nary a Kindle-carrying activist uttering a word in protest. What’s more, the report says, is that most of this power is wasted. Data centers only use, on average six to 12 percent of their electricity performing actual computations. The rest is used to keep banks of servers on stand-by, basically, for those surges in online activity that could otherwise slow, or, heave forbid, crash our inalienable right to watch the latest YouTube viral video. Lastly, in the event of a failure in the electricity grid, online companies rely on exhaust-spewing diesel generators to serve as backup power supplies. The result of all this? “Pollution from data centers has increasingly been cited by the authorities for

violating clean-air regulations,â€? according to the Times. “In Silicon Valley, many data centers appear on the state government’s Toxic Air Containment Inventory ‌â€? Kind of makes getting your fingers ink-stained from reading the Sunday paper feel downright wholesome in comparison, doesn’t it. Who knew recycling page after page of those dead trees, which were a decaying fire danger to begin with, was such an act of environmental stewardship? I know, know. There’s nothing “cleanâ€? about the old-fashioned way of delivering pictures and words, either. But that’s the point. There are no free lunches. So what to do? Live like a caveman? Even they wreaked havoc on their environment, especially after they figured that fire thing out. And neither petroglyphs nor pictographs would stand a chance of being EPA-, HCCA-, LUR- or LDC-approved today. Maybe, at the end of the day, we’re all just life-sucking, carbonemitting parasites. At least we could admit it, rather than turning a blind eye to our environmental realities – like, say, an antifracking or anti-mining type who thinks nothing of all the things that he enjoys, and uses regularly, that come from natural gas and mineral extractions. Does Crested Butte have a single restaurant that doesn’t rely on natural gas for cooking? Does Robert Earl Keen, God love his honky-tonkin Texas soul, realize where the strings on his guitar come from? The one he uses to sing anti-mining songs? That’s all I’m trying to say. Let’s strive to rid, or at least reduce, hypocrisy in the real world. Including the myth that technology is a “cleanâ€? industry. And then perhaps we can start assessing other possible side effects of the digital revolution. Like declining literacy. Newsday reports that national reading scores on the SAT college-entrance exam have sunk to their lowest point in 40 years, and writing efficiency isn’t much better. At the risk of sounding like a Luddite, could the age of electronic gadgetry have anything to do with these troubling trends? Heck, I don’t know. But I’ll leave you with this snippet of an email I recently received from a college – excuse me, a university – student: “Are media class putting a debate on October 25 and we where wondering if we could run are add in your news paper.â€? Oofta. Maybe stone tablets are the way to go. At least back then you had to put some actual effort, and perhaps even a little thought, into what you were saying. Chris Dickey can be contacted at 970-641-1414 or publisher@


What’s an engagement editor do? It’s taken nearly 10 months, but I’m thrilled to report to you that the Coloradoan’s news team is at full staff. We could have gotten there sooner — but the addition of new positions for our expanded reporting pool, coupled with my notorious habit of being exceptionally picky, meant that finding the right fits took longer than expected. The newest (and final, for now) hire on our news team is Paul Berry, a journalist who joins us from The (Colorado Springs) Gazette. He fills a role that is still rare, but becoming increasingly common in newsrooms: that of the engagement editor. What’s an engagement editor? Simply put, an engagement editor connects. They connect stories to readers, citizens to journalists, questions to answers. For those of you reading this in print, the idea of connecting a story to a reader might seem foreign. After all, you became connected to these stories when the paper was delivered on your doorstep this morning in one big package. But, increasingly, readers online don’t get the digital equivalent of the “news is here� thwap of a paper on concrete. Thus, part of the role of the engagement editor is to make sure prospective readers are finding the work we’re doing. An example: Let’s say we do a story on the southern segment of the Mason Trail reopening after completion of the Troutman underpass (a story I personally can’t wait to see in the paper). Regular readers of the paper or website will be informed, but what about those who haven’t established a news habit? Enter the engagement editor. In this case, they’d seek out Fort Collins’ cycling community where they digitally gather (places like Bike Fort Collins’ Facebook

Business cards Letterhead Envelopes Postcards Sales fliers Circulation forms Rate cards Promotional brochures Presentation folders Special publications Invoices Carbonless forms

page) and share the story there. Thus, those readers who are potentially most interested in the information are now connected to it. That same scenario will play itself out many times per day — stories on energy, nonprofits, volunteerism, beer, environment, innovators and more all have potential audiences that aren’t seeing the stories. And, as long as our folks are going to write them, we aim to get as many people as possible to read them. In addition to connecting stories with audiences, expect to see the engagement editor be able to directly answer a lot more questions asked of us on social media. We often get questions on our Facebook page like, “Why are there sirens at Horsetooth and Shields?� The engagement editor will be able to more closely monitor those questions, ask around the newsroom and post the answer rapidly online — even if the end result is too minor of an item to put into print. The engagement editor combines the old-school roles of town crier and ombudsman with new-school knowledge of social media approaches and web development. In the end, the goal of an engagement editor is lofty, and speaks to journalism’s highest purpose: make sure the community is as informed and educated as possible. In this digital age, that means looping in readers in every way we know how. During the coming weeks, I hope you notice the change. Visit our social media pages at Coloradoan or, and tell us what you’d like to see answered. We’ll put our news team to work. Reprinted with permission from the Sunday, October 7, 2012, Fort Collins Coloradoan.

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colorado editor

November 2012

A reporter and camera operator from Colorado State University’s CTV interviews a participant at J-Day 2012 on the Fort Collins campus.

J-Day all the way High school students flock to CSU to learn about all things Journalism PHOTOS BY GREG LUFT/COLORADO STATE UNIVERSITY

Students from the Englewood Pirateer celebrate their loot at J-Day 2012.

Standley Lakes students turn out en masse for J-Day 2012.

November 2012

Greg Luft, Alumni Coordinator and chair of Colorado State University’s Department of Journalism and Technical Communication speaks to students about covering tragedy.

colorado editor


Professor Scott Winter from the University of Nebraska Lincoln discusses social media.

Colorado Press Association Executive Director Samantha Johnston speaks to students at J-Day 2012 about the importance of social media in creating personal and professional brands.

A student recounts how she overcame a failure in life as part of a session on stretching limits until you fail as a learning strategy.

Ryan Avery, 2009 graduate of the CSU Department of Journalism and Technical Communication, was recently named Toastmasters International 2012 World Champion of Public Speaking. Avery traveled from Portland, Oregon to speak to students at J-Day.

J-Day students experience a day where multimedia is encouraged. Students filmed, tweeted, Facebooked and any other “ed” they could do regarding J-Day.


colorado editor

November 2012

Business reports should be understandable Your newsroom has just finished customer experiences, across all digital brainstorming on how to beef up its busichannels, aligned to the buying and shopness reporting. The conversation happens ping preferences of each individual.” to be at the same time your newspaper It’s a good bet that most reports writhas a major announcement itself. What ten in this vernacular are immediately better opportunity to signal to your readdeleted from an editor’s e-mail “in box.” ers a new page in local business reporting. That’s unfortunate, because the financial The headline: “Publisher announces gobbledygook means something – maybe the call for redemption of all its public something quite important to your comdebt” munity – if translated into plain English. jim The story begins: “XYZ Publishing pumarlo Reporters do have avenues to do so. Co., parent company of the local newspaFirst and foremost, don’t be afraid to per, announced the call for redemption of ask the question. Track down the approall of its public debt. The company elected priate contact – whether at a local facility to redeem all outstanding notes under its or corporate headquarters – and ask for publicly funded indenture, and deposan interpretation. It’s also an opportunity ited funds with the trustee to pay off these notes to develop a pro-active relationship for identifying … XYZ Publishing Co. refinanced its debt under and reporting the employer’s good and bad news. more favorable terms …” The company’s CEO Reporters also should become familiar with the adds, “Today demonstrates just how far we have Edgar website of the U.S. Securities and Exchange come in proving that there is a sustainable future Commission: for our company.” All foreign and domestic companies are required Say what? The press release may as well have to file registration statements, periodic reports, been written in Chinese. It would have just as and other forms electronically through EDGAR. much meaning for most readers. Anyone can access and download the information This is not the first corporate financial press refor free. lease that has created more confusion than clarity. Lastly, regularly monitor the websites of your Consider these two leads. Again, the companies major local employers for press releases and shareremain unidentified to protect the guilty: holders news. “Company A announced today the final results It’s heartening to see newspapers devote of its previously announced private offers to resources to regular business coverage. Stories exchange certain of its outstanding debentures and about employers and employees have a big impact senior notes (collectively, the “Old Debentures”) on communities. What happens at the workplace for a combination of a new series of the Company’s might even overshadow a decision of the local city debentures due 2042 (the “New Debentures”) and council. Today’s challenging economy warrants cash (the “Exchange Offers”).” even greater attention to business as an everyday “Company B announced new software and serbeat. vices designed to help Chief Marketing Officers There are a variety of ready-made business (CMO), Chief Procurement Officers (CPO) and stories to pursue, even for those newsrooms with other key line-of-business executives realize quick- limited resources. er business results by delivering intelligence guided Localize stories that may be found in metro

newspaper business sections. Customize state employment figures for your community or region. Report what companies are doing to comply with requirements of the federal health care reform legislation. Profile local companies that have found a niche in the global marketplace. Go beyond the proclamations. Events such as Manufacturers Week or Small Business Week present opportunities for coverage, but stories must be meaningful. Find a local angle. Are companies challenged to find skilled workers? What’s the local economic impact of in-home businesses? If a community does not have a recognition event, why not organize it yourself? Use your chamber of commerce as a resource to track important happenings on the local business scene and not simply as an avenue to publish photos of each and every visit by the Red Coat Ambassadors. Then set guidelines for many of the standard stories: new businesses, closed businesses, anniversaries, expansions, businesses offering distinctive services. The underlying lesson is that any story, no matter its importance, will be of minimal value unless it is easily understood. That’s especially true in business stories that are written at some corporate headquarters. Editors and reporters need to ask the necessary questions to link the story to your communities. The result will be a win-win scenario for the business and your readers. Jim Pumarlo writes, speaks and provides training on community newsroom success strategies. His newest book is “Journalism Primer: A Guide to Community News Coverage.” He also is author of “Votes and Quotes: A Guide to Outstanding Election Coverage” and “Bad News and Good Judgment: A Guide to Reporting on Sensitive Issues in SmallTown Newspapers.” He can be reached at www. and welcomes comments and questions at

If you fail to plan . . . I first heard it years ago... his best just to get the and I’ve remembered ever pages done in time: since: “If you fail to plan, No one knew how you plan to fail.” long the story would Some say it originated be. with Benjamin FrankThere were lots of lin. Others aren’t so sure. good photos, but no Regardless, the quote is space. memorable—and it’s a sure No one had perreminder to editors that mission to move ads to ed they need to work on their henninger create more room for the planning. For every issue. package. During a recent converIt was just too late to sation with some editors, I think of all that. pointed out that the jump That last point was all on a page 1 lead story was (to put it too true: It was just too late to think nicely) “text heavy.” I offered some of all that. ideas for improving the design: An editor, knowing that this More photos. was going to be an important story Breaking the one long story into (remember: it was the page 1 lead), multiple shorter pieces. should have been working on a deUse of pull quotes. sign plan much earlier in the day: The problem with those suggesHow can we segment this story tions is that they just couldn’t be into shorter pieces? worked out at 9:30 p.m., a half-hour How long do these pieces have before deadline. The layout person to be? was swimming upstream and doing How about quotes for pullouts?

“The Scream,” by Edvard Munch. Does it remind you of you?

With such an emotional story, surely there will be some compelling quotes. Who’s going to edit the story? Who’s shooting the photos? How many? What subjects? What angles? How do we create extra space for the jump? Can we move ads from that page? Whom do we ask to get the ads moved?

MacDonald combines print, digital talents SYNC2 from Page 1 nesses as well as to understand the importance of online marketing. Before joining SYNC2 Media, Mike was an Agency Business Development Manager for an online adver-

tising agency in Denver. He was responsible for generating new business opportunities with Fortune 500 companies. His accomplishments include developing professional relationships with companies such as Time, JP

Morgan, Chase, Zynga and Disney. “SYNC2 Media is a great fit professionally. Account executives today have the ability to act more like media planners and buyers than ever before,” MacDonald said. “This role combines

What do we do to help Bob get this all designed on deadline? Apparently no one in the newsroom had given such planning a thought. It never happened. So, the one long story was written, with only a one column photo running with the 30-inch jump. No pullouts, no display photos...nothing to encourage those readers who followed the story. Another quote applies: “If you keep doin’ what you’ve always done... then you’ll keep gettin’ what you’ve always got.” How disappointing is that? ED HENNINGER is an independent newspaper consultant and the Director of Henninger Consulting. Offering comprehensive newspaper design services including redesigns, workshops, staff training and evaluations. E-mail: edh@ On the web:

my print and digital background into one. My expertise will help our print customers bring lost advertising dollars back in house, and it will help our association to me more relevant in the digital age.” When he’s not in the office, Mike enjoys spending time with his wife and two children.

cpa marketplace SMALL WEEKLY FOR SALE Small weekly in Colorado mountain community. Grosses about $96,000. Fixed costs about $46,000. Good opportunity for young couple starting out, or older “downsized” journalists. Easy news beats. Monopoly situation. All buildings and equipment included in sale price; you can walk in on Monday and put out a paper on Tuesday. Current owner will stick around to help with transition. Beautiful location, great for fishing, hunting and outdoor recreation. Excellent schools, low crime, no traffic. Price includes office building and residence. Price reduced to $220,000 from $270,000. Call 970-723-4404. ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR OF COMMUNICATIONS AND NEW MEDIA Responsible for leadership & management of New Media strategy for the Archdiocese; BA or BS required, plus min. of 5 yrs exp. in comm. field; Must be Catholic in good standing with vast knowledge of Catholicism & superb ability to represent Church’s stance orally & in writing. Please send a resume stating desired annual salary range to COPY EDITOR – GREELEY TRIBUNE The award-winning Greeley (Colo.) Tribune is searching for a full-time copy editor. Our news desk requires our copy editors to design pages, write headlines, edit copy and catch mistakes, meet deadline, assign stories to the web and assist with all our digital efforts. Applicants must have an eye for detail and snappy page design. Please send resumes and examples of your work to Editor Randy Bangert at rbangert@ NEWS EDITOR FOR AWARD-WINNING NORTHWEST KANSAS TWICE-WEEKLY News editor for award-winning Northwest Kansas twice-weekly, near federal reservoir, hunting, fishing, farm area. Supervise part-time staff and stringers. Prefer journalism degree, one to two years’ professional experience, knowledge of AP style, page design, writing and camera, news judgement. This is a do-it-all position which requires skill and leadership, focused on creating the best local news possible. Reply with resume and clips to s.haynes@ and dpaxton@ EOE/mfh Dana Paxton, general manager, The Norton Telegram, 215 S. Kansas, Norton, Kan. 67654.

colorado editor

November 2012


A True Pioneer

Judy Hildner left a lasting impression on Pueblo sports and women By Peter Roper Sportswriters are irreverent, defiantly casual in dress and manner, and generally hostile to authority. Not to mention know-it-alls. But if they had anything as grandiose as royalty, you’d have to consider Judith Kathryn Hildner a queen among the knaves. After all, she was probably the first woman sports editor in Colorado when The Pueblo Chieftain promoted her to that job 22 years ago. “And you know, that is important to me,” the 64-year-old Hildner confessed last week, her clear blue eyes direct but warm. “When I started, there weren’t many women in newsrooms and certainly not covering sports.” Readers are already imagining hulking, nearly naked football players trying to intimidate lady sportswriters. We’ve heard the stories, seen the movies, and Hildner acknowledged that, yes, one Denver Bronco did demand to know what she thought she was doing in the sweaty, testosterone-laced locker room. “My job,” she answered and went on asking questions. The news here is that Hildner has closed her notebook for The Chieftain, retiring after 46 years. It is hard to imagine the newsroom without her cheerful voice, offering up comment or criticism on some professional football or baseball game playing on the television that hangs in the sports department. It’s a remote-controlled color TV. And there’s carpet on the newsroom floor. The staff writes on quiet computers and there are women — lots of them — in all departments. Not like The Chieftain newsroom in 1966 when the soundtrack to daily life was clattering typewriters, the thump-thump-thump of teletype machines, a cloud of cigarette smoke in the air and male voices everywhere. On the telephone or talking or laughing at the daily flow of news. So how does a little girl from Niles, Mich., become a sportswriter? TV of course. “There was a neighbor of ours back in Michigan who owned a television, which my family certainly didn’t have,” Hildner laughed. “And so I knocked on the door and asked if I could see the TV. He warned me I wouldn’t like it, that he was watching a (Chicago) Cubs baseball game. But he let me in and believe it or not, I discovered baseball.” She’s not kidding. Little Judy Porter got the bug so seriously, she checked out a book from the library and learned how to score a game. She discovered statistics, that constant stream of numbers that define athletic performance. Batting averages. Earned-run averages. Winning percentages. It was probably genetic. Her father, Ed Porter, became an accountant for the CF&I when he moved his family here in 1954 while her mother, Jean, wrote a local column for the Southern Colorado Register. “So I was the girl who kept stats for the sports teams at Pueblo Catholic High School,” Hildner said. “And was an editor on the school newspaper.” Oh yeah. And she was a New York Yankees fan. Hildner explained, “In those days, the weekly baseball game on TV was almost always a Yankee game. So I became a Yankee fan.” Roll the highlight film and watch young Hildner graduate in 1966 and head for Southern Colorado State College. Baseball fan. Stats girl. And art major? Any veteran reporter will tell you the road

JUDYISMS Asked to recall important mentors or to give advice to aspiring writers, Judy Hildner offered up some quick responses:  “If you want to be a good writer, you have to read good writers.”  She likes Dick Francis mysteries because the late jockey-turned-writer describes action so well in his novels. “It’s not about adjectives,” she said.  Hildner highly respected Dorothy Mauk, The Denver Post reporter, because Mauk was demanding about accuracy. “Dorothy wore these sharplooking professional suits and covered to a newspaper career is paved with good intentions. “I don’t know why I chose art,” she said, smiling — but nevermind, she was already badgering The Chieftain sports department for part-time work. “Bill McClatchey was sports editor and I’ve always been grateful that he was willing to take a chance with me,” she said. Hildner credited Jeanne Hickman, another Chieftain reporter, with having helped convince the oldschool editors that women could do the job. This is the Hollywood part of the story, where the young gal reporter meets the handsome sportswriter from Pasadena, Calif. — Jack Hildner — and their newsroom encounters turn into romance, and then marriage. Add a pregnancy with twin sons, Matt and Thad, and you get a devoted partnership that only ended last May when Jack Hildner, Chieftain writer, editor and all-around-good guy, died from cancer. It speaks volumes that Jack and Judy not only lived together, they worked together every day. Some sportswriters are gamers, who like watching the mystery of an athletic contest reach its conclusion. Hopefully, with excitement and drama. You know the cliche, the

everything. But what I remember most was how careful she was to get everything right. That’s a role model to follow.” Denver Post columnist Dick Connors taught her there is much more to a wellwritten column than voicing opinions. “I always liked the way Dick used quotes.”  Chieftain sportswriter Dave Socier. «Dave had a real gift for color, of making you feel like you were there.»  Asked about the future of newspapers and sportswriting, Hildner said, “I think there will always be a place for good writing and fact-gathering. I just don’t know what that will look like in the future.” thrill of victory and the agony of defeat. And then there are writers who are drawn to the people, the human story of athletes striving to accomplish something. It can be in a champagne-soaked Super Bowl locker room or a high-school wrestler standing with his arms raised in a gym full of cheering friends and schoolmates out on the Eastern Plains. Hildner said she’s always considered it a privilege to cover the many high school and college teams in The Chieftain’s readership area over the decades. The long drives, the hours in rickety press boxes — in rain, snow and summer heat. The young people who let her into their lives to share in their happiness or tears. “There just isn’t any substitute for being there,” Hildner said. “And the smaller the community, the more grateful they were that The Chieftain was there, taking note.” Hildner laughed remembering some of the more bizarre events she’s covered — like the South High School football game against Mitchell High School where the Colts had to let the Marauders score at least one touchdown for South to move on to the playoffs. It was a point thing and she said it was surreal and funny to see Colt players resisting their instinct to tackle Mitchell ballcarriers. And the poignant moments, like seeing

Retired Pueblo Chieftain sports editor Judy Hildner sits in the stands behind first base at Hobbs Field at the Runyon Sports Complex. Chieftain Photo/Bryan Kelsen

veteran Bronco receiver Steve Watson listening to a young John Elway talking to reporters after a Bronco loss in the 1987 Super Bowl. “Here was Watson, clearly wrapping up his career, and you could see on his face that he understood just how important Elway was going to be in the Broncos’ future, that something special was happening right in front of his eyes,” Hildner explained. She also appreciated grace in the face of defeat, remembering how Todd Helton gave patient interviews after the Rockies’ disappointingly quick exit in the 2009 baseball playoffs. While she enjoyed her last 22 years leading The Chieftain sports department, she also missed covering all those small-town games. Hildner has a wall full of awards as a writer and reporter, she’s been inducted into the Greater Pueblo Sports Association Hall of Fame, and she continues to serve on the Colorado Hall of Fame selection committee. But what she will miss most is that daily involvement with her community. She has truly enjoyed being a columnist, having Pueblo residents come up to her in stores and on the street, to share their thoughts with the lady sports editor they’ve learned to consider a friend. After all, readers knew her husband’s byline for years, as well as her own. Now they also read a son, Matt Hildner, and his news reports from the San Luis Valley. “The Chieftain has been a good home for our family,” she said with emphasis. While she says she is retiring, writers don’t really do that. They just change their audiences and Hildner says she can’t imagine just quitting the word business. So don’t be surprised to see her name in print again. After all, she’s still the kid next door who wants to come in and look at that new television. Reprint with permission from The Pueblo Chieftain


colorado editor

November 2012

Innovation takeaways are a top priority INNOVATION from Page 1 sons from the 2011 InnoMission Report is impressive and Meg and the team from this 11,000 daily newspaper exemplify community newspapering at its best. LMA is proud to salute them and share some of their key initiatives.

Key Innovation Mission Takeaways

Takeaway No. 1 — Intense ongoing training The goal: Visit with 600 underperforming and non-advertisers in just six months. Legacy print reps were required to take their digital specialist with them on each sales call, and they were to lead with digital products first. “This was a great way to get our print advertising consultants up to speed and comfortable selling digital products,” says Boyer. They hung up a countdown so that everyone always knew where the team was relative to goal. On the front of each countdown sheet was a number, and on the back was a form to be filled out after each meeting. Brilliant! The form included who was in the meeting, when and where it took place, what feedback the advertising consultants received from the possible advertiser as well as whether a contract was signed as a result of the meeting. Tip from Meg Boyer I would strongly encourage any newspaper to give an initiative like 600 in 6 a shot. It takes a lot of effort to keep it going, but we gathered critical information, kept the staff motivated, and used it as a cross-training opportunity. Regularly report the results of the initiative to your sales team. Let them know who has seen the most clients and who has signed the most contracts as a result. Salespeople are competitive, and it will keep everyone moving forward. Takeaway No. 2 — Legacy reps can sell digital Capitalizing on the 600 in 6 months multi-media sales effort and

training, they revised commission structures to put the emphasis on digital. Now the digital specialist gets paid commission on overall digital revenue, regardless of who makes the sale. Legacy reps earn increased commission on all sales (including print) for making their digital goals. They also held a half-day retreat where each digital sales rep made presentations on their products. It’s working. In January 2011, 100 percent of banner advertising and online directory sales were sold by a digital sales rep. In January 2012, 50 percent of digital sales were made by legacy print reps. Takeaway No. 3 — Community Contributions On the first Wednesday of each month, the newsroom and offices open to the public as part of their “Coffee & a Newspaper” events. Community members are encouraged to bring their thoughts, concerns and story ideas. “We’ve had a great response, especially when we tie hot topics to the events,” reports Boyer. They also publish community contributions through their Share Steamboat Today feature. Readers submit more than 200 photos per month via Facebook or share@ The paper posts the photos on their website, on social media, and in the pages of the newspaper through their Share Steamboat Today feature. A half-page, full-color promotion runs every day as a way to inform the community about these programs and to share some of the amazing photos they receive. Social media has also proven to be a very powerful tool for them – they’ve already accomplished more than 4,000 fans on Facebook and 1,300 followers on Twitter. They recently joined Pinterest and have enjoyed a lot of initial interest. Find them on Pinterest at http://www. “It is especially critical that we tie all of our online pieces together, so we try to constantly link from our different sites and social media accounts,” says Boyer. Takeaway No. 4 — New Content Strategies Videos! Videos! Videos! They have made producing videos one of their largest goals for 2012 and aim to produce 18 videos per week using existing reporters and photographers and their smart phones. It has been a challenge that the newsroom has eagerly taken on, and it’s been extremely rewarding for their young

journalists and their readers reports Boyer. They’re also reporting in real time, as news happens, at They send out an initial “tweet” or post to Facebook as soon as they get word of a breaking news item, and then follow up with the details as the story develops. Takeaway No.5 — Creative Combinations In 2011, the Steamboat Pilot & Today began offering incentives to businesses to advertise in print and online. In addition to those discount programs, they sold a “Press Pass” in January. For $595, the advertiser could purchase a Press Pass, entitling them to 80 inches of display newspaper advertising, discounts on other print products and discounts on digital products. This initiative brought in $65,000 in January revenue and SALES LEADS for the rest of the year. 2011 also saw the start of their “Be Social” package, or social media management. The ‘Be Social’ package includes an enhanced listing on, their online business directory and visitor information website. It also includes regular posts on Facebook and Twitter. There are several add-on options for advertisers, including blogs, videos, email marketing and reputation management.

courts and the state legislature. With the NFOIC grant and matching funds, CFOIC would hire a director (probably part-time at first). In addition to bringing council fundraising and revenue-generating efforts to a level of sustainability, the director would be charged with

leading CFOIC’s expanded efforts. These efforts would include: tEducation – CFOIC would organize open government seminars throughout the state directed at concerned citizens, elected officials and especially records custodians. t Information – CFOIC would develop a telephone and online hotline to provide information,

Elizabeth Bernbergshows off her August edition of Colorado Editor at the Sheraton Four Points in Biloxi, Miss., where she was attending the Newspaper Association Managers Classified Network Conference. CPA wants your photos of Colorado Editor traveling around your community, state, nation and world. Submit your Traveling Editor photos to Selected photos will be run in upcoming editions of Colorado Editor.

Top spot at two papers

Takeaway No. 6 — Create New Business The Steamboat Pilot & Today launched Hot Steamboat Deals on Sept. 15, 2011. In the six weeks leading up to the launch, they focused on securing deals, building the email database, building excitement in the community, and finding the right person to lead the charge. Since its debut just eight months ago, Hot Steamboat Deals has brought in more than $100,000 in net revenue. In an effort to continue growing the email database and offer new products to customers, they launched a “Mom & Me” online photo contest. The contest brought in 102 photos, 1,254 votes and 442 email addresses.

Advocating for government transparency CFOIC from Page 1

Editor out and about

education, assistance and resources to the public and media seeking access to government-held information and government meetings. t Litigation – In addition to continuing to file briefs in open government cases, CFOIC would form a litigation committee that would put citizens interested in

PUBLISHER from Page 1 Fort Morgan dailies, as well as several other newspapers on the eastern plains. She was named the Colorado Press Association’s Newspaper Person of the Year in 1995. Tonsing will bring her experience and success at The Times as she takes over in Sterling, said Al Manzi, president and CEO of Prairie Mountain Media, the company that owns both papers. Tonsing credited the staff at both papers for making it possible for her to accept the dual role. She feels her experience on the business side of running newspapers will serve her well as she transitions to publisher of both papers. Tonsing sees some opportunities for collaboration between the two papers. She noted that while the two already share some content, she thinks that could be expanded, especially online, to provide readers with more news from around the region. challenging denial of access to records or meetings in contact with pro bono attorneys who would represent them. t Advocacy – Working with the CPA and its lobbyist, CFOIC would offer expert testimony on open government legislation. It also would rally public support for measures that strengthen open government guarantees. t Website development – Working with the NFOIC, CFOIC would

Manzi was optimistic about Tonsing’s promotion. “If she has the same success in Sterling that she has had in Fort Morgan, the future is bright for both companies,” he said. McClain said he wishes Tonsing well and is confident the JA is in good hands. “Julie’s promotion is very good news for Sterling, Logan County and for the JA. This is her home ... She knows the community, the people and the importance of the quality of life here,” he said. “I am certain that she will build a bigger, better and stronger newspaper and enhance the powerful digital platforms we use to cover the community.” Tonsing and her husband, Mark, live northwest of Hillrose. Both are lifelong residents of northeast Colorado, growing up in Holyoke. Tonsing is a graduate of Northeastern Junior College and Colorado State University, and has been involved in many civic organizations. develop a more robust website that would be a comprehensive repository of open government information and resources, and be the place to go for Coloradoans interested in all aspects of open government. To support to these important efforts, please send your taxdeductible contribution to the CFOIC c/o Tom Kelley, CFOIC president, 1336 Glenarm Place, Denver, Colo. 80204.

November 2012 Colorado Editor  

Monthly publication of the Colorado Press Association.

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