THE WASHINGTON NEWSPAPER Vol. 98, No. 2 February 2013
Journal of the Washington Newspaper Publishers Association and Allied Daily Newspapers of Washington • www.wnpa.com
Legislative event date undecided New governor often needs time
he date of Legislative Day 2013 for Washington Newspaper Publishers Association and Allied Daily Newspapers of Washington is expected shortly. Securing a date takes a bit more time in years when there is new leadership in Olympia, but it is likely we’ll gather in Olympia on a Thursday in March. When the date is announced registration will be available online at www. wnpa.com/events and by mail. The schedule should be the same as in past years, with the legislative briefing and talks by legislative leadership and elected and appointed officials from about 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. followed by a reception at the Temple of Justice reception room and dinner with new Gov. Jay Inslee at the Governor’s Mansion.
WNPA partners with Tennessee Press Judge editorial, design contest entries in March
NPA-member newspapers are invited to judge entries in the News, Photography, Special Section, Sunday Edition and Design divisions of the Tennessee Press Association’s
ON THE WEB
Register by March 7: www.wnpa.com/events Better Newspaper Contest this spring. Judging is set for March 15-29. The Tennessee contest includes entries from daily and weekly newspapers in five divisions.
Most entries will be judged on the betterbnc.com site, giving WNPA members the opportunity to experience judging on the website that hosts the WNPA contest. Special Section or Issue, Sunday Editions and Design entries will be judged from material shipped to judges by UPS. WNPA-member newspapers that provide judges for the Tennessee contest will receive a
credit toward the fees for their contest entries, $50 for one judge and $75 for three or more judges. Remember that seeing Tennessee Press Association members’ work may be an an advantage in planning your 2013 contest entries, which TPA members will judge this summer. Questions? Contact Mae Waldron, email@example.com or (206) 634-3838 ext. 2.
RED SKY DELIGHT
Strong buy: A weekly in Seattle Move mirrors Black’s purchase in San Francisco
ound Publishing, the state’s largest community news organization, purchased the Seattle Weekly effective Jan. 9. Details of the purchase were not disclosed. The Weekly, a freely distributed newspaper in Seattle and nearby cities, was purchased from Village Voice Media Holdings. The Gloria Seattle Fletcher Weekly reaches over 200,000 unique print and digital readers every week with more than 1,500 outdoor news boxes and instore racks throughout Seattle and nearby areas. It was founded in 1976 by Darrell Oldham and David Brewster. See SOUND, page 5
Brian Myrick/Daily Record, Ellensburg
For Brian Myrick and the Ellensburg Daily Record, ‘Red Fog’ placed first in the Color Sports Action Photo category, Circulation Group III, of the 2013 Washington Better Newspaper Contest.
New leader takes over Sound’s Whidbey group Pierzga accepts state position; Graves steps in
ound Publishing has named Keven R. Graves executive editor and publisher for the Whidbey Kasia Keven Newspaper Group, which inPierzga Graves cludes the Whidbey News-Times newspapers, and while I’m (Oak Harbor), the Whidbey excited about my new position, Examiner (Coupeville) and it will be hard for me to leave the South Whidbey Record Whidbey and the newspaper (Langley), as well as the industry behind,” Pierzga said. Whidbey Crosswind, a monthly “But Keven is a great fit for publication serving veterans on the Whidbey community, and the island. that makes me feel really good Graves is succeeding Kasia about the transition.” Pierzga in the role. Pierzga Lori Maxim, vice president has accepted a public relations of Sound Publishing, said she position with the Washington appreciates the contributions Department of Revenue in Pierzga made to the newspapers Olympia. “I have a real passion for on Whidbey Island.
“We will miss her enthusiasm and passion for the newspaper industry,” Maxim said. “And we wish her the best as she returns to public relations.” Graves, 48, comes to Whidbey after 13 years as editor and publisher of the Nisqually Valley News in Yelm. “We are thrilled to have Keven take over the helm for the three Whidbey Island papers,” Maxim said. “He brings a breadth of experience, plus a commitment to community service, that we’re confident will resonate well in the community.” Graves has roots in Whidbey Island dating back more than 30 years. “I was on the newspaper staff at Anacortes High School, and we’d bring the paper to Oak Harbor to be printed,” he said. “Owner-Publisher Wallie Funk
became a mentor, encouraging me to pursue a newspaper career.” “This is kind of like returning home,” said Graves. “My journalism career started at the Whidbey News-Times. I always hoped to return there someday.” “I’m glad that day has come,” he said. “I’m excited to rejoin Sound Publishing and work with the great staff.” Graves earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Western Washington University in 1987. He started his career as an intern reporter at the Whidbey News-Times. He was hired as a full-time reporter and remained with the newspaper for the next seven years. During that time, Sound Publishing purchased the newspaper from Funk and co-owner John See WHIDBEY, page 5
What does Warren Buffett know that we don’t know?
verybody who has called on an advertising client recently has probably been told that newspapers are folding all over the country. Or that newspapers are a dying industry. Or that the client is spending their ad dollars on (take your pick): a) the Internet, b) mobile ads, or c) social media. Any and all may apply, and the news from the technology front isn’t great either. Consider the disastrous news from Pepsi. It seems a few years back they decided to change their strategy. They took half of their traditionalmedia ad budget and invested it in social media. The end result is they lost 2 percent market share. That equates to a loss in annual beverage sales of $500 million. They were knocked out of their No. 2 position in the market to No. 3 behind Diet Coke. The other big news on the tech side is that the number of people accessing the Internet via their cell phone now exceeds those using desktop computers, laptops or tablets. Once again many advertisers are being forced to redesign their websites, this time to be platform independent. Where it
Officers: President: Bill Forhan, NCW Media, Leavenworth l First Vice President: Keven Graves, Nisqually Valley News, Yelm l Second Vice President: Lori Maxim, Sound Publishing l Past President: Jana Stoner, Northern Kittitas County Tribune, Cle Elum l Secretary: Bill Will, WNPA, Seattle Trustees: Mike Dillon, Pacific Publishing Co., Seattle l Josh Johnson, Liberty Lake Splash, Liberty Lake l Eric LaFontaine, Othello Outlook l Imbert Matthee, Waitsburg Times l Don Nelson, Methow Valley News, Twisp l Stephen McFadden, Ritzville-Adams County Journal l Fred Obee, Port Townsend Leader Staff: Executive Director: Bill Will l Editor/Manager of Member Services: Mae Waldron
Officers: President: W. Stacey Cowles, The SpokesmanReview l Vice President: Mike Shepard, Seattle Times Company Board: Rufus Friday, Tri-City Herald l Jill Mackie, The Seattle Times l Dennis Waller, Chronicle, Centralia Executive Director: Rowland Thompson THE WASHINGTON NEWSPAPER is the official publication of the Washington Newspaper Publishers Association. It is published monthly by WNPA, 12354 30th Ave NE, Seattle WA 98125, phone (206) 634-3838. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org; URL: www.wnpa.com, in conjunction with Allied Daily Newspapers of Washington, P.O. Box 29, Olympia, WA 98507, (360) 943-9960. Email: email@example.com.
will all end up is anybody’s guess. Then, just last year, along came legendary investor Warren Buffett. According to Wikipedia, Bill Buffett Forhan is widely Publisher, considered the NCW Media, most successful Leavenworth; investor of the WNPA President twentieth century. Buffett’s purchase of Media General’s 60 community newspapers is a definite vote of confidence in the industry. It’s true that Buffett purchased the papers for a bargain-basement price. But if the industry is dead or dying, then the investment makes no real long-term economic sense—and one thing Buffett has always been known for is his long-term investment strategy. Media General is not Buffett’s first foray into the industry. He has had a long-term investment in the Buffalo (N.Y.) newspaper and is the largest outside shareholder
in the Washington Post. In an interview with Forbes Magazine Buffett once said, “Newspapers have been giving away their product at the same time they’re selling it, and that is not a great business model. So when they put papers up on the Internet and you get it free, you’re competing with yourself….And you’re seeing throughout the industry a reaction to that problem and an answer to it. You shouldn’t be giving away a product that you’re trying to sell.” I would second that remark but also add that we have been allowing the tail to wag the dog for far too long. Computers, tablets, and smart phones are wonderful pieces of technology, but without good, professionally developed content they have limited appeal. Sure, you can search the world for news and information, but how accurate is that information? In today’s Internet world, you cannot be sure a site that looks like and claims to be the website of your local bank is actually your bank’s site. So how can you be sure the news you’re reading online is real news? Device manufacturers and software developers have been
crying for years that content should be free. If you’re selling computers, why would you want it any other way? The cost of the device is significant, and you must pay for Internet access or telephone service so why not pay for content? You may think I am whining but that’s not my purpose here. The Internet provides us with tremendous new opportunities to expand our individual businesses. That is especially true for weekly newspapers. For example, now we have the tools to expand our frequency and coverage without adding pages, carriers, paper, etc. But why shouldn’t we be part of the equation when it comes to content service and reliability? Somehow we need to get the equipment providers to make us part of the package. For example, why don’t they provide us with free e-editions that are platform friendly? They then would pay us based on the number of users who access our content. It’s a radical idea but one that we may need to explore as an industry. On a more proactive note, the WNPA Advertising Committee has been working hard on a
campaign to promote awareness of the continuing relevance of community newspapers. In that process I have seen some really good op-ed pieces about the power of community newspapers and some good advertisements and videos. Our industry has not been very good at selling our story or promoting our value. We must learn to be more competitive. The world is more competitive, and our readers and advertisers are hammered daily by messages from our competitors. If you have a good idea for our advertising campaign on the power of the local newspaper, send it to Mae Waldron, mwaldron@wnpa. com, or committee chair Keven Graves, firstname.lastname@example.org. We have lots of talented and creative people on the staffs of WNPA-member newspapers. We tell our ad customers that every day, and now is the time for us to work together on a campaign that will build our brands and grow our businesses both collectively and individually.
Despite the laws, we still need watchdogs
overnment decisions should be made in public. Government documents should be accessible. Government employees should know and follow state law. The concepts are simple and crucial to operating a democracy. Yet, here in the real world, we still need watchdogs to ensure government agencies hold open the doors of government. Tim Ford, open-government ombudsman in the state Attorney General’s Office since 2007, has been one of those watchdogs. He was appointed by former Attorney General Rob McKenna, who created the position in 2005. Ford helps citizens, government employees and members of the news media understand state open-records and public-meetings law. His work, undoubtedly, has headed off lawsuits.
Unfortunately, the AG cut the ombudsman position to part time in 2008 as his office budget was cut. State Karen Attorney Peterson General Bob Executive editor, Ferguson News Tribune, has been on Tacoma the job only a few weeks but already has decided to keep the ombudsman position, albeit part time. Ferguson said he is following through on a campaign promise to foster government transparency. One of his goals is to reinstate Ford as a full-time ombudsman, but he’s not sure he can do that in this budget cycle.
“I’m hoping to do it in the nottoo-distant future,” Ferguson said in late January. Ford believes the position must be full time. More than 500 people a year seek Ford’s advice on open government, he said. They include citizens (and reporters) fighting for access, lawmakers seeking advice on new legislation and government staffers trying to follow the laws. Ford acts as consultant, a mediator and an educator. He struggles to meet the demand. When he’s not acting as ombudsman, Ford provides legal counsel to state agencies, such as the state Liquor Control Board. He sometimes experiences what he calls the “natural tension” between zealously protecting his government clients and promoting the people’s right to open government. “I need to be a full-time om-
budsman,” Ford said. “I need independence to say what needs to be said.” He said he has made it clear that being part time is unworkable in “allowing me to do the job I want to do as ombudsman.” Ferguson and Ford together are supporting House Bill 1198. It would require training of public officials and employees on public records and open meetings. Ford believes agencies would welcome the training. “They love it, they want more of it and it needs to be more regular,” he said. If the bill passes, Ford will be the trainer. Passing HB 1198 is on Ferguson’s short list of legislative priorities. Reinstating a full-time open-government ombudsman as soon as possible should be, too. Reprinted with permission.
Moving experience for a veteran executive
n June 1, 1999, I came to the Nisqually Valley News. On Feb. 8, 2013, I will be moving on. It was a very hard, emotional decision, but I am confident it was the right one for me. With my son graduating in four months, this transition dropped from the sky unexpectedly, as if on some preordained schedule. Liam will be going on to college in the fall, and empty-nest syndrome was kicking in hard. On Monday, Feb. 11, I will become the new executive editor and publisher for the Whidbey Newspaper Group. I will be overseeing five publications on Whidbey Island. If a person does their job well — and I like to think I have here at the NVN — you feel a mixture of great sadness and happiness when it comes time to leave. You also have confidence that the business will continue to thrive and grow long after you’ve gone.
I am certainly sad because I won’t get to see every day those whom I have worked with so closely for so long. We are Keven like famGraves ily. We have Editor and shared some Publisher, Nisqually Valley of our most News, Yelm significant and special moments with one another. They are special friends who will forever be in my life. I am happy and excited because I am going to newspapers I know well and I will be living closer to my family. I started my newspaper career at the Whidbey News-Times, and I helped found the Coupeville Examiner (now Whidbey Examiner), two of the newspapers I will oversee.
When I started at the WNT as an intern reporter in 1987, I hoped to someday be its publisher. When I left there in 1994, I had been acting editor. I am succeeding a good friend of mine, Kasia Pierzga, who was a co-worker at the Whidbey News-Times and who also once owned the Examiner. I have big shoes to fill. However, Kasia and I share a similar passion for community newspapers and an affinity for the Whidbey Island publications. I will also be working again with my former assistant editor, Megan Hansen, who left here a few months ago to become the editor on Whidbey. I leave proud knowing that the Nisqually Valley News is one of the best community newspapers in the state, and confident it is in the hands of an adept and loyal staff who loves it as much as I do. Everything we accomplished here during my time behind this desk happened because of team-
work. Every single employee here is a critical cog in a welldesigned machine. Each person knows they are reliant on their fellow coworkers to keep this machine running smoothly. My replacement here at the NVN will undoubtedly be announced in the coming weeks. I know the staff will welcome my successor and do everything they can to ensure a smooth transition. And I believe the community will do the same. As my days here tick away, I want to thank you — our readers and advertisers — for making this a fun, rewarding and amazing job. I don’t take for granted that newspapers as great as the NVN come along every day, and I hope that you don’t either. I am grateful and appreciative of every moment of the past 13 years here. I am honored and blessed to be a part of this newspaper’s long, rich history.
OPEN ACCESS & LEGAL ISSUES
Mayor honored for open stance Senate ‘leak’ probe Skagit Valley Herald, Mount Vernon
edro-Woolley Mayor Mike Anderson received an open government award last month for walking out of a meeting he said was violating the state’s Open Public Meetings Act. The Washington Coalition for Open Government announced the Key Award for Anderson. WCOG President Toby Nixon presented the award to Anderson on Jan. 23 during the SedroWoolley City Council meeting. Anderson said he made the decision to walk out of the meeting last year even though it caused friction between him and many of the members of the Skagit Council of Governments. SCOG is comprised of area mayors from Skagit County, as well as port and county commissioners, and acts as a pass-through agency for federal, state and local grant funding to pay for regional transportation projects. In the thick of hiring a new
executive director last year, a SCOG staffer failed to post a required meeting notice. SCOG had intended to meet in closed session on Aug. 8 to talk about the qualifications of four finalists for its then-vacant executive director post. Because the meeting had not been properly advertised, Anderson left in protest after calling the city attorney. The council never convened the August meeting because of questions regarding its legality. Some SCOG members openly voiced their displeasure with Anderson while he was out of the room. “There’s a huge amount of peer pressure in these groups to just go along and not be too strict to comply with every technical detail,” Nixon said. Nixon also is a city council member in Kirkland. The act requires public agencies to notify the media and anyone else who has asked for the information of all special meetings at least 24 hours before
the meeting occurs. The act also requires the agency to post a meeting notice on paper at the agency’s normal meeting place and the meeting site if it is held at an alternate location. Neither happened at last August’s meeting. Anderson said he didn’t want to rankle members of the board but felt he had to speak up. “I just think that open government, and good government, there should be rules you use and go by,” Anderson said. “That wasn’t right.” In November, the state Auditor’s Office sent a letter to SCOG, voicing concerns with how the council had conducted a meeting on Aug. 15. In that letter, the state office said SCOG was not complying with the intent of the Open Public Meetings Act when the board voted to negotiate with a finalist for the then-vacant executive director position without naming that finalist in a public meeting, calling it a “secret vote.”
slowed to a drip GOP hands job to Dem senator Seattle Times
he state Senate has apparently scaled back plans to investigate who leaked documents involving state Sen. Pam Roach, R-Auburn, to the media. The Associated Press reported earlier this month that Roach violated Senate policy by verbally attacking a Senate Republican staffer last year. The information came from leaked documents. Republicans, who control the state Senate with the help of two Democratic senators – Rodney Tom, D-Medina, and Tim Sheldon, D-Potlatch – authorized the secretary of the Senate to investigate the matter in consultation with private counsel.
Senate Democrats sent out an email Jan. 22 saying Tom would conduct the investigation by himself. Tom was appointed Senate Majority Leader by the Republicans after he crossed party lines. In an interview, Tom said he planned to ask Sen. Karen Fraser, D-Olympia, Sen. Linda Evans Parlette, R-Wenatchee, Tom Hoemann, the former secretary of the Senate, and the Democratic and Republican caucus attorneys a few questions related to the leak. He would not describe his questions. If all five people say they had nothing to do with leaking the documents to AP, Tom said he’ll drop the matter. “I wanted to make sure people understood this isn’t a witch hunt,” Tom said. “We’re just trying to maintain the integrity of the institution and move forward.”
P-I’s ‘ideal’ reporter, columnist Scates dies at 81
ongtime Seattle PostIntelligencer reporter and columnist Shelby Scates spent 35 years writing about politics without becoming a cynic. “It is the pursuit of ideals, not wages or prestige, that kept most reporters of my generation on their beats and at their desks,” he wrote in his 2000 memoir. Shelby Without Scates ideals, he continued, “the reporter is as hapless and ineffective as a combat infantryman without a rifle.” Scates, a titan of Washington state political reporting, died Jan. 3 in Seattle from complications of dementia. He was 81. He covered wars and presidential campaigns. His investigative reporting ended
more than one political career. He wrote three books in addition to his memoir. He skied, sailed and climbed mountains. And he never got comfortable with computers. “He was the last of the oldtime newsmen,” said Seattle City Councilmember Jean Godden, a former P-I colleague. She said she saw Scates about a year ago and he told her with some pride that he still was writing on a manual typewriter. John de Yonge, a former P-I editorial-page editor, said that when the newspaper began using computers, Scates would come to work early, peck out his column on his typewriter, pencil-edit it — then painstakingly retype it on the computer. Both the Washington Post and the New York Times recruited Scates, de Yonge said, but “he told me, ‘There’s not enough powder snow out there to keep me interested.’ “ Former Washington governor and U.S. Sen. Dan Evans climbed mountains with Scates,
starting with Mount St. Helens in its pre-eruption days. But as a journalist Scates never let him off easy, Evans said. “I would call him a friend — a pretty good friend — but that didn’t stop him from sticking the needle in on occasion. ... He didn’t let things go. He would dig and find out what was really going on.” Scates was born in Obion County, Tenn., in 1931, one of 10 siblings. In his late teens he headed west, hitchhiking and working odd jobs, and wound up in Seattle. He studied history and philosophy at the University of Washington, working as a merchant seaman to help pay his way. He graduated in 1954, then spent two years in the Army. Scates reported for International News Service, United Press International, The Associated Press and the weekly Seattle Argus before joining the P-I. He was a Nieman Fellow at Harvard University — one of journalism’s top honors — in
1962-63. He met Seattle attorney Joan Hansen, his companion of 41 years, in 1968, when she was volunteering on Robert Kennedy’s presidential campaign and he was covering it. They led an adventurous life together, she said: “We climbed Mount Rainier. We sailed around Vancouver Island three times.” In covering politics, Scates distinguished himself by seeking out “the why, and not so much the what,” de Yonge said. And he didn’t stop reporting when he became a columnist, the former editor added. One of his biggest scoops came in 1979 when a former legislator who had disappeared for 18 months in the face of federal extortion and tax-fraud charges agreed to meet Scates at a British Columbia airstrip and confess his crimes. Scates then shepherded the miscreant across the border and accompanied him when he turned himself in to surprised authorities in Seattle. Scates wrote well, former
Seattle P-I and Seattle Times journalist Casey Corr wrote in 2000, and told stories even better: “His West Tennessee accent and cackling laugh made even the most routine legislative hearing a three-act tale of fools and knaves. Scates always seemed to have golden sources who revealed the private deal or personality tiff that drove a public outcome.” In addition to his memoir, Scates authored a biography of Washington Sen. Warren Magnuson, a history of SeattleFirst National Bank, and a volume on one of the architects of the downfall of Wisconsin Sen. Joseph McCarthy in the 1950s. In addition to Hansen, survivors include two daughters, Jane Scates Meininger, of Portland, and Margaret Scates, of South Korea; and two granddaughters. A celebration of Scates’s life is set for 1 p.m. Aug. 11 at Shilshole Bay Beach Club, Seattle.
Sun loses unstoppable ad man Lengel to leukemia Kitsap Sun, Bremerton
utside, it could be blowing big snow sideways without a car on the road. Even that wouldn’t stop Kitsap Sun senior account manager Tim Lengel from bursting into the Parr Ford Mazda showroom. With his wide smile and teeth gleaming, he was primed for the kill, packing a thousand reasons why Rod Parr should buy an ad. “By gosh, here’s a reason to advertise today,” Parr remembered of Lengel, who died Jan. 5 at age 63 of acute leukemia. Joy, his childhood sweetheart and wife of 42 years, was
with him at Swedish Medical Center, along with three of their four grown children. A son on the East Coast Tim Lengel couldn’t get back in time. Awfully good, with a little naughty thrown in, Lengel was loved both by coworkers and clients. Everyone called him old-style. With his brilliant white shirt and impeccably knotted tie, he stood in stark contrast to the younger,
casual set at the Sun. His work ethic was fearsome. He was often the first to arrive in the morning and last to leave at night. He never missed a day of work, even when taking chemotherapy sessions for an earlier bout of cancer. Lengel was the Sun’s own Willy Loman, with the deepest of obsessions to make the ultimate deal. Unlike the salesman in the Arthur Miller play, Lengel never became obsolete. He sold to the very end, even making phone calls from his deathbed to his treasured clients, assuring their ads would be well-tended in his absence.
“He called me to make sure that everything was OK,” said Jacquie Goodwill, of Harrison Medical Center. “I adored him.” Lengel, with a quick and wicked wit and enjoyment of people, made the mundane fun, according to Doug Haughton, an owner of Liberty Bay Auto Center in Poulsbo. “He really enjoyed the encounters. And if a sale resulted from it, that seemed to be a bonus,” Haughton said. One who will greatly miss the newspaper’s top salesman is senior account manager Dorothy Braid, who worked at the desk beside him for the past decade.
Together, they ruled the local caradvertising market like king and queen, each enjoying $100,000 accounts. “We’d bring back the money, back then,” Braid recalled. On Jan. 7, stands of impeccably ordered manila folders filled Lengel’s empty desk. A notebook with deep-rutted doodles made during client calls was neatly arranged front and center. A Tacoma News Tribune photo of a chimpanzee in a white shirt looked down from his cubicle wall. “Oh my God, the jokes,” Braid See LENGEL, page 5
Concrete result: New WNPA member a returnee Reborn Herald rejoins WNPA
ashington Newspaper Publishers Association Board of Trustees approved the Concrete Herald for associate membership at a Jan. 11 board meeting in Olympia. The Herald, published monthly, has 1,000 paid subscriptions and 4,000 free distribution for a total circulation of 5,000. The newspaper has offices at 7674 Cedar Park in Concrete and is online at www.concrete-
Pioneer launches Idaho weekly Meridian Press debuted Jan. 25
eattle-based Pioneer News Group Co. has started a weekly newspaper for Meridian, Idaho. The first issue was printed Jan. 25. The Meridian Press is a publication of the Idaho PressTribune, Publisher and President Matt Davison said, and will be distributed Fridays to more than 10,000 targeted homes and at several locations in Meridian. The weekly newspaper will have a full online component, apps and a full suite of social media components as well. The Idaho Press-Tribune of Nampa, a Pioneer newspaper, made the announcement at the January monthly luncheon of Meridian Chamber of Commerce. “The positive feedback we’ve already received from the Meridian community has been overwhelming,” Davison said. The Idaho Press-Tribune conducted a research study a year ago and results underscored the need for better media coverage of Meridian, Davison said. “People I’ve met with are really excited. This has been one of the most exciting projects I’ve ever been a part of. Starting a newspaper from scratch isn’t an easy task, but I’m confident we have the team and strategy in place to be successful with the Meridian Press.” Staff members are Holly Beech, who has been the business reporter for the Idaho Press-Tribune for nearly two years, and Sales and Marketing Executive Christi Atkinson. “At a time when many feel newspapers are on their last breath we are expanding,” Davison said. “The Idaho Press-Tribune, the Emmett Messenger-Index and now the Meridian Press will be a part of the communities we serve for a very long time.” Davison is the former publisher of the Daily Record in Ellensburg.
herald. com, where publisher Jason Miller provides details of the Herald’s history. Founded in 1901 as the Hamilton Jason Miller Herald, the newspaper soon got its second publisher, Hans J. Bratlie, a Norwegian immigrant who purchased the paper in 1903.
Bratlie moved the Herald east to Concrete in 1912, following the growth stimulated by two cement plants. Some three years later, fires destroyed the Herald and seven other buildings in town. Though the buildings were rebuilt, Bratlie soon moved to Ridgefield, leaving the newspaper in the hands of a series of transient owners. However, in 1929 Charles M. Dwelley took charge, building readership and subscriptions. He continued as editor and publisher for more than 40 years, serving as WNPA
President in 1957-58. Succeeding Dwelley as publishers were Robert and June Fader from late 1970 to 1984, Anne Bussiere from 1984 to 1989, and John and Mae Falavolito. Under the Falavolitos, the Herald ceased publication in the early 1990s. Three publications succeeded the Herald: A special upriver edition of the Skagit Argus of Burlington, produced by Skagit Valley Publishing in Mount Vernon (1992-93); East Skagit Community News, published by Pat Betts (1996-2005); and
finally, beginning in early 2006, Philip Johnson produced the monthly Upriver Community News. In late 2008, Johnson put the News up for sale for $4,000. Miller was a member of the town council and a citizen activist, as well as a freelance writer and editor, when he initiated a grassroots effort to raise the $4,000. His fundraising succeeded, and on May 6, 2009, Miller published the first issue of what he refers to as the reborn Concrete Herald.
Intern deadline nears CALENDAR OF EVENTS Feb. or March Legislative Day April 25
WNPA Board Meeting, Bellevue
Better Newspaper Contest Entries due
Tourism Special Section Entries due
WNPA Board Meeting, Leavenworth
WNPA Board Meeting, Olympia
126th Annual Convention, Olympia
riday, Feb. 8 is the deadline for WNPA publishers to nominate an intern for the 2013 WNPA Internship Scholarship program. Please email your nomination to Mae Waldron, mwaldron@ wnpa.com. Winners will be announced by March 9, 2013. The internship is a 240-hour commitment and must be served at a WNPA regular-member newspaper. The internship scholarship, up to $1,000, would be in addition to any salary or other benefits you may provide for your intern. Publishers should provide the following: • A letter of nomination from
the publisher, including the proposed duties for the intern and the name and title of the person who will supervise the intern • An essay (up to 300 words) from your nominee about their interest in a career in community journalism • Up to five examples of your nominee’s work, if available Your nominee may be a high school student, college student, or simply someone in your community who you would like to have as an intern at your newspaper this summer. If you have questions, please call Scott Wilson at (360) 3852900 or Mae Waldron, (206) 634-3838 ext. 2
Chronicle creates Centralia College paper Blaze Staff Chronicle, Centralia
he Chronicle in Centralia has launched a monthly newspaper produced by students of Centralia College and focused on campus news. This newspaper, which will be distributed for free at the college and inserted into print editions of the Chronicle, is part of a new comprehensive journalism program, independent of the college and operated by the Chronicle as a service to the college and the community. The newspaper will include
Centralia College East, in Morton, and is called the Blaze, in homage to the college’s Trailblazer mascot. The Blaze fills a gap created by the closing of the former paper sponsored and published by the college, known as the B&G, or Blue and Gold, according to Chronicle Editor-in-Chief Brian Mittge. The concept demands that students of the college work in the Chronicle’s newsroom as interns, learning the ideas and real-world skills the news industry needs.
A corner office in the Chronicle’s downtown newsroom has been converted into an office and a working college newsroom for the Blaze. Eric Schwartz, assistant editor at the Chronicle, had the idea to create the newspaper. He attended Centralia College and worked on the Blue and Gold. Hallie Simons, a 2012 Centralia High School graduate who served as editor of the Columns high school newspaper and interned at the Chronicle this past summer, is the first editor-in-chief of the Blaze.
Members of the Blaze board are Chronicle staff including publisher Christine Fossett, editor Mittge, retail sales director Brian Watson, web developer Brittany Voie, sports editor Aaron VanTuyl (also an adjunct professor at Centralia College), sports writer and photographer Brandon Hansen, visuals editor Pete Caster, and design supervisor Kelli Erb. Stories will also be online at www.centraliablaze.com and at www.facebook.com/ centraliablaze.
Gazette ex-publisher to lead Sequim foundation
ue Ellen Riesau, former publisher of the Sequim Gazette and WNPA’s 2008 president, has been hired as the first executive director of the Olympic View Community Foundation in Sequim. The foundation was started in 1997 as the Sequim 2000 Committee, which raised funds to renovate the downtown. “Sue Ellen is a founding
board member and has a deep connection and experience in this community,” said foundation board president Jennifer Puff. “We are incredibly lucky to have her as our director.” Riesau said she is excited to take on the responsibility of directing the foundation and most important, to make its goals and commitments more visible to local citizens.
“We are more than a grantmaker,” she said. “We are about building community. That is a platform from which I managed the (Sequim) Gazette. I see this as an opportunity to do the same thing by supporting our community through the foundation.” Between 1997 and 2011, the foundation gave $303,205 in grants to 42 organizations.
It incorporated in 2000 as the Sequim Community Foundation and, this year, changed its name to better reflect its geographical reach. It was able to hire Riesau and open an office with the two-year grant from the Benjamin N. Phillips Memorial Fund, which supports organizations that improve the lives of Clallam County residents.
Help evaluate, inspire top high school journalists
very year the Washington Journalism Education Association hosts contests for students in high school media classes. Between 300 to 400 students usually compete. They arrive in the morning, attend press conferences or receive other materials and then have around 90 minutes to complete their
entries. The entries are judged in the afternoon and the students get back their entries at the end of the day. Needless to say, they need professional journalists and college journalism teachers to help judge the entries. Judges come at 11:30 a.m., are hosted to lunch, and then work in groups to judge the entries. They are finished by
3 or 3:30 p.m. at the latest. Please agree to help these high school students learn about your profession by volunteering to judge. Retired journalists are always welcome. Judging will be in the library of Inglemoor High School in Kenmore on Saturday, March 9. A complete list of the contests is at www.wjea.org
so you can choose. Judges for layout, editing and photography are always hardest to find. The most judges are needed in the news, editorial, sports and feature writing categories, since they get the most entries. If you have questions, please contact Tom Kaup, tjkaup@ comcast.net or Fern Valentine, email@example.com.
Lewis County leaders honor DeVaul Herald Co.
uring the 30th annual Lewis County Economic Development Council (EDC) banquet last month, Frank DeVaul was awarded the Gail and Carolyn Shaw Industry Award. DeVaul is CEO of DeVaul Publishing in Chehalis, and with his wife, Judy, publishes the East County Journal in Morton, Tenino Independent, Skamania County Pioneer in Stevenson, and a variety of other publications of benefit to local businesses. The banquet is held to honor projects intended to bring industry to the area and the leaders who bring them to fruition. DeVaul was honored specifically for his help in bringing the medical waste treatment company, Stericycle, to Morton, and more broadly for his publications and his long history of volunteering on community boards. Gail Shaw is a founder of the Industrial Commission, a nearly 50-year-old development partner of the EDC. The eponymous award was created seven years ago. “It is an award that goes to someone who has, over a substantial period of time, made contributions to the industrial development of Lewis County,” Shaw said. “(This award) is not about an
individual, it’s about every board having an encouraged, open and honest discussion,” DeVaul said. “We don’t always agree, but because of those discussions we have come up with the best decisions for our community and that’s what it’s about.” Commission President Buck Hubbert said the award is also largely about leadership. “Frank always steps forward. He takes on projects, follows through with them and is really a great guy to work with,” Hubbert said. “He treats everybody the same, I have never seen him have a bad day and he is never afraid of a challenge.” DeVaul currently serves on the board of the Industrial Park at TransAlta. He has served on the Centralia College Foundation Board and the Chehalis-Centralia Airport Board, as well as volunteered for the local chamber and Kiwanis, the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office budget advisory committee, the Chehalis Public Safety Building committee, the Chehalis Vernetta Smith Library Campaign, the Chehalis Business Association, The Chehalis Renaissance Committee and other groups supporting civic activities. He was WNPA president in 1998.
pares staff after slump Daily Herald, Everett
Rosemary Dellinger/East County Journal, Morton
Frank DeVaul was honored Jan. 24 for his long history of service to the economic development of Lewis County.
Herald shutters Brewster offices, for now Quad City Herald, Brewster
n an austerity move, NCW Media closed the Quad City Herald office in Brewster effective Jan. 1, 2013. Editorial operations for the paper are being coordinated out of the company’s Chelan office until economic conditions
utilizing the administrative staff there to manage circulation administration for all of the NCW papers. But inflation and continued stagnation in economic conditions across the Chelan, Douglas and Okanogan County region have forced additional cost-cutting measures.
Circulation administration is being moved back to Chelan. Because of the nature of reporters’ work, it is difficult for them to cover meetings and events and keep the Brewster office open full time. The Brewster telephone number and post office box will remain the same.
Examiner. He was editor and publisher when he left that newspaper in 1999 to accept the job at the Nisqually Valley News. Pierzga purchased the Examiner in 2006, expanding its circulation and news coverage. She sold the paper to Sound Publishing in June 2012, taking over as publisher for the Whidbey News Group shortly thereafter.
Graves is current vice president of the Washington Newspaper Publishers Association and serves on the WNPA Foundation Board of Directors. “I’ve worked with Keven for some time on the WNPA board, and I’m impressed with the capabilities he brings to the job, both on the business side and the news side,” Maxim said.
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Webber and the paper went from weekly to biweekly. In 1991, Graves wrote and produced an “Extra” edition of the Whidbey News-Times announcing that the Whidbey Island Naval Air Station had been pulled from a long list of military installations to be closed. “I was privileged to work with great people at the Whidbey
improve. Editorial staff will continue to cover local community events and meetings from their homes in the Quad Cities or out of the Chelan office. Subscribers will see no loss of coverage. NCW Media has been able to keep the Brewster office open over the last few years by
News-Times,” Graves said. “Wallie Funk was instrumental in my career. Fred Obee taught me how to be a good editor. I was also fortunate to work with the late Dorothy Neil and numerous other talented journalists and WNT alumnus.” After leaving the Whidbey News-Times as the assistant editor in 1994, Graves joined with four others in starting the Coupeville
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Founded in 1987, Sound Publishing publications reach more than 500,000 homes weekly with over 700,000 monthly digital readers. Sound publishes 36 daily, weekly and monthly community newspapers and magazines in
addition to the Little Nickel Classifieds in western Washington and northern Oregon. “We think highly of the Seattle Weekly and its faithful readership,” said Gloria Fletcher, President of Sound Publishing. “The Weekly fits quite well into Sound Publishing’s
culture of delivering unique and relevant content to both print and digital readers.” “The addition of the Seattle Weekly to Sound’s print and digital portfolio is very exciting,” said Josh O’Connor, VP of East Sound Newspaper Operations. “The Weekly opens up many possibilities for readers, advertisers and the communities that we serve. “We appreciate the editorial focus on local news, culture and the arts. This publication has been a leader in shaping Seattle for many decades and we look forward to FIND YOUR 25-HOUR DAY
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managing this business in the future,” O’Connor said. The purchase of the Seattle Weekly came in tandem with a separate purchase of the San Francisco Weekly by the San Francisco Examiner, which is owned primarily by David Black, Chairman of Black Press and other Black Press executives. Black Press is the parent company of Sound Publishing. Black Press operates more than 170 newspapers in western Canada and Washington in addition to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser and Akron (Ohio) Beacon Journal. The Seattle Weekly and the San Francisco Weekly will be operated independently of one another. The Seattle Weekly is known for political and governmental reporting as well as music and arts coverage. The Seattle Weekly will remain based in Seattle.
ith advertising revenue in 2012 less than hoped, the Daily Herald Co. on Jan. 4 laid off six employees, including four in the news department. The company also is leaving several vacancies unfilled and is shifting resources to emphasize digital products. “As you know, our advertising revenues did not rebound in 2012 as much as we had hoped,” Publisher David Dadisman said in an email to employees. “We have taken some action this week to rightsize our business for 2013. Unfortunately, that means some of our colleagues will be leaving soon. Additionally, some vacant positions will not be filled.” Those laid off were a news reporter, a sports reporter, a photographer, a copy editor, a circulation employee and an operations worker. The news department has two vacancies that will not be filled, and one news reporter’s hours were reduced. The layoff is the third significant staff reduction in as many years. There were layoffs in late 2010 and early retirements in late 2011. Last year, the company closed the Weekly Herald, which served south Snohomish County, and it soon will cease distribution of the free Herald Shopper. While the company is cutting distribution of printed products, it is reorganizing the management and staff responsible for digital information and revenue, Dadisman said in an interview. Besides the Herald newspaper, The Daily Herald Co. publishes HeraldNet.com, the Spanish-language weekly and website La Raza del Noroeste and the Herald Business Journal.
from page 3 said. Lengel often hovered among the desks at the Sun, slipping tips to reporters, and maybe furtively sharing a slightly off-color joke or drawing, in that old-school way. Lengel came to the Sun in 2000 and served in a variety of advertising capacities, including retail sales manager. He and Joy were involved in the Rotary Club of Silverdale, putting on the group’s annual picnic. He loved it,” Rotary President Mary Hoover said. The couple, grandparents now, also were longtime members of Silverdale Lutheran Church, where the Rev. Bill Crabtree called Lengel “a faithful worshipper.” “We’re all really grieving here ... it was a big shock. We’ll miss him a lot,” said Crabtree. Braid said Lengel lived a good life and everyone’s better for knowing him. “You did a good one, Timmy,” she said.
CAREER MOVES n Jim Van Nostrand returned to his home state to serve as the assistant managing editor, digital, at the Tri-City Herald in Kennewick. He brings 25 years of experience as a reporter and editor to his new assignment. Most recently Van Nostrand was with McClatchy’s Washington Bureau and served as an adjunct professor at the American University, teaching digital storytelling to graduate journalism students. Previously was the senior editor of national news at Knight Ridder Digital, managing national, world and political coverage on 28 Knight Ridder newspaper websites. He got his start in digital journalism in 1995, when he launched Leadernet, an online subsidiary of the Times Leader newspaper in Wilkes-Barre, Pa. Van Nostrand was born at the Army hospital at Camp Hanford, and his family still lives in the area. n Katherine Smith is the new staff writer at the Covington/
Maple Valley Reporter, a Sound Publishing weekly. As an intern at Tahoma School District, Smith covered news and features across the district and worked on a sustainability curriculum project. She graduated in print journalism with a minor in biblical studies from Biola University in La Mirada, Calif., in December 2010, and from Kentridge High School in Kent. Among the influences on her career choice she lists the Rory character on the television show “Gilmore Girls,” which aired while Smith was in junior high school. Smith succeeds TJ Martinell, who joined the paper in April 2011 and accepted a position as an editor at msn.com. Also joining Sound is Dannie Oliveaux, the new editor of the Port Orchard Independent. The editor’s job is Oliveaux’s second at Sound. In 2009 he was a reporter for the Bonney Lake-Sumner Courier-Herald for a year. Oliveaux spent two
years reporting on the Oregon Coast. He had been reporting for the Omak-Okanogan County Chronicle and is pleased to return to an urban environment. n Joe Utter is the newest city reporter at the Columbia Basin Herald in Moses Lake. In December Utter completed a journalism degree at Washington State University. Though he had graduated from WSU in criminal justice about five years ago, after working a few security jobs Utter realized he wanted to change careers. He studied journalism because he’s always enjoyed writing. n University of Washington student Jimmy Lovaas is interning with the News Tribune in Tacoma, joining the statehouse bureau in Olympia. Journalism will be a third or fourth career for Lovaas, executive editor Karen Peterson noted in her introduction. “He has worked as a flight steward, a salesman and a bouncer. We’re guessing some of
those skills might come in handy in Olympia.” Also new on the TNT legislative team is Melissa Santos, who covered Puyallup and Pierce County for TNT from 2007 to 2010. Most recently Santos worked on a second degree in digital media and web design from the University of Maryland while with her husband on his Navy tour in Italy. Peter Callaghan, Jordan Schraeder, and Brad Shannon complete the legislative team, which is led by Kim Bradford. n At the Northern Kittitas County Tribune reporter Lyn Derrick and ad-sales representative Deanna Plesha retired in early winter. Plesha had been the face of ad sales for the past 10 years. Her successor, Teresa Castrilli, has lived in upper Kittitas County since 1997, when she and her husband moved to Easton from Lake Tapps. Since then, Castrilli has managed the business aspects of their construction company,
Castrilli Construction LLC, and raised a daughter, now attending Central Washington University. For nine years Castrilli was active in Easton’s PTSA, and for six years volunteered as treasurer of the Easton Memorial Day Parade and with Easton Elections Polls. Previously she was a systems analyst for Boeing and Overlake Hospital. Bruce Coe, a freelance writer and photographer, succeeds Derrick as a full-time reporter. Coe earned a certificate at Rocky Mountain School of Photography in 2008. With his wife Kim, he operated Knockout Photography, specializing in portraiture and corporate communications. The Nisqually Valley News in Yelm hired Lindsay Trott as a new reporter. She graduated in March from Central Washington University with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in women’s studies. She completed a three-month internship at the Daily Record in Ellensburg.
Picking out what happened at the Times-Picayune
y 13-year-old son received an iPod Touch for Christmas this year. I know my son. Probably as well as I’ve ever known anyone. And I knew, given time, he would lose his expensive gift. In an effort to soften the blow when the device did turn up missing, I had Zachary create a background screen with the words, “If you find this iPod, please email kevin@kevinslimp. com to let my dad know you have it.” I had to tell you that story, so you would understand the reference to my son a little further down this column. Now for story number two. In the late 1990s, I left the newspaper world for a few years to be director of communications for the United Methodist Church in my part of the United States. I had a staff that created publications, online content, P.R. material and a newspaper. Some of the most interesting aspects of my job came under the heading of “crisis communication.” As crisis communication director, I prepared the organization for emergencies we hoped we’d never see. Several thousand professionals made up the clergy and staffs of these congregations and it was my job to be sure they were ready in the event of a “media event.” I was quite adept at getting TV reporters to report just about anything. Newspapers weren’t as quick — you might say “gullible” — to accept everything as the truth, so I generally used television to get information out to the masses. This meant I would create text that ministers and others were to use if called by a member of the media during a crisis. They were always instructed, if the reporter wanted more information than I had provided, to contact me directly. Understanding that story will also come in handy as you read further. So last night I was having dinner with a friend when I got a text that read, “Are you watching ‘60 Minutes?’” “No,” was my immediate response.
“They’re saying the newspaper industry is dead. I thought you’d want to know.” Within minutes came an email from Karen Geary of Kevin Slimp the Paris Post- Director, of Intelligencer in Institute Newspaper West Tennessee. Technology “Did you see ‘60 Minutes’? It’s a story about the Times-Picayune. They’re saying newspapers are dead.” The evening continued like that with texts, emails and calls arriving from concerned viewers near and far. This morning, I found the 12 minute clip online and watched it. Then I watched it again. Then I watched it and took notes. In less than 11 seconds, Morley Safer said, referring to newspapers, “virtually an entire industry in free-fall.” The story, of course, was about the Times-Picayne’s move from a daily to a three days a week publication. I was especially interested because some of the folks in the story were the same folks who contacted me back when the shift was announced.
Jim Amoss Takes the Fall for Newhouse
Steve Newhouse declined to be interviewed for the story. That job fell to Jim Amoss, longtime editor of the paper. Safer’s first question to Amoss seemed simple enough. “Did you agree with the decision to start publishing three days a week?” I’m listening to this interview for the fourth time as I write. And for the life of me, I still haven’t heard him answer the question. He gave what sounded to me like a “packaged” response, the kind I might have written years ago. It reminded me so much of my son, when I asked where his iPod was, knowing full well it had been lost. He told me all about the possible places an iPod could be, without coming out and telling me he’d lost it a few days earlier.
I felt for Amoss. I wanted him to tell us what he really thought, one way or the other. All I got from listening to his interview was that the industry was grappling with options. Safer equated what was happening to surgery, where all the limbs are amputated and replaced by artificial limbs. In an open letter to Advance, the paper’s parent company, several high profile citizens of New Orleans, including many names that you would know, wrote that “The Newhouses are losing the trust of the community.” David Carr, New York Times reporter, said, “I don’t think they expected the hurricane winds that came against them.” Yet in a radio interview from a few weeks ago, David Francis, business manager for the NOLA Media Group, of which the Times-Picayune is a part, said that New Orleans is “embracing us again.” I called Carl Redman, executive editor of the Advocate in Baton Rouge to ask him about the new daily paper in New Orleans created by the Baton Rouge paper. Redman reports that his group was overwhelmed by the response to the new daily. They had hoped for a circulation of 10,000 by February 2013. Instead, more than 10,000 subscribed to the newspaper within a week. Between home delivery and single copy sales, the Advocate currently reaches approximately 20,000 homes each day. I tried to reach someone at the Times-Picayune, sending emails to the publisher and several managers, but received no response. Finally, I decided to talk with Rob Curley, deputy editor of the Orange County Register (OCR), whose resume includes more experience in online journalism than anyone I can think of. Rob is a household name and I figured he could give me insight on whatever it is I’m missing related to the Times-Picayune conversion to a non-daily. Instead we spent most of our conversation talking about his new job in Orange County. OCR is one of the 20 biggest papers in the country.
Rob has left his role as online guru to serve as one of five deputy editors of the paper. He explained that, since July, OCR has increased its newsroom staff room 185 writers and editors to 300. I could write several columns about the changes at OCR, but I can sense Rob’s excitement when he discussed his work with America’s “largest community newspaper,” a description credited to Ken Brusic, executive editor. After spending my afternoon interviewing Carl Redman and Rob Curley, I found it difficult to understand why Safer referred to newspapers as “dying.” I found it even harder to understand after reading a story in News & Tech today that six of eight publicly traded newspaper companies showed increases in their stock prices in 2012. Not small increases, but double-digit increases.
I love talking with folks who are excited about working for their newspapers. I visited with two newspapers in Virginia and Kentucky over the past few weeks to work with their staffs. Both papers are doing well and continue to invest in the future. It’s no coincidence that papers that invest in the future thrive. And while the Orange County Register may be America’s largest community paper, you can bet that thousands of community papers will continue to serve their communities and surprise Morley Safer at the same time. My suggestion? Remind your readers that your paper is providing a vital service to the community as it has for years. And, perhaps, take a cue from the folks in Orange County and continue to invest in the future. Reach the author at Kevin@ KevinSlimp.com
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Published on Jan 30, 2013
Monthly newsletter of Washington Newspaper Publishers Association and Allied Daily Newspapers of Washington, Feb. 2013