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Journal of the Washington Newspaper Publishers Association and Allied Daily Newspapers of Washington •


Times, The Stranger win Pulitzers Reporters’ series on state methadone program nets Times its ninth prize

The Seattle Times


eattle Times reporters Michael J. Berens and Ken Armstrong have been awarded the 2012 Pulitzer Prize in investigative reporting for their work exposing the state of Washington’s financially motivated practice of routinely prescribing a deadly pain drug for people in state-subsidized health care. Another Seattle journalist, Eli Sanders, 34, associate editor of The Stranger, won the Pulitzer in feature writing for his story “The Bravest Woman in Seattle,” about a South Park woman who survived the brutal 2009 attack by Isaiah Kalebu that took the life of her partner. In the Times’ three-part series titled “Methadone and the Politics of Pain,” Berens and Armstrong revealed that at least 2,173 people died in Washington state be-

tween 2003 and 2011 after accidentally overdosing on methadone, which for eight years was one of the state’s two preferred painkillers for Medicaid patients and recipients of workers’ compensation. The Pulitzer citation honors Berens and Armstrong for “their investigation of how a little known governmental body in Washington State moved vulnerable patients from safer pain-control medication to methadone, a cheaper but more dangerous drug, coverage that prompted statewide health warnings.” In an unusual move, the Pulitzer board awarded a second prize in the investigativereporting category. The Associated Press also won for documenting the New York Police Department’s widespread spying on Muslims. The Times series reported that the poor have been hit hardest by the state’s reliance on methadone. While Medicaid recipients make up about 8 percent of Washington’s adult population, they account for 48 percent

See PULITZERS, page 3

Ellen M. Banner/the Seattle Times

Investigations editor Jim Neff, second from left, celebrates after the announcement that the Seattle Times investigative reporters Ken Armstrong, left, and Mike Berens, second from right, won the Pulitzer Prize in investigative reporting. At right, reporter Christine Clarridge gives Berens a hug.

Black selects new president



loria Fletcher has been named President of Sound Publishing. Fletcher comes to Sound from Gatehouse Media, where she was Regional Vice President responsible for 85 publications spread over 13 states based in Joplin, Mo. Prior to Gloria Gatehouse, she Fletcher was Division Vice President for Community Newspaper Holdings from 2000 to 2007, responsible for their Oklahoma group. She also worked for American Publishing Company from 1988

See FLETCHER, page 2

Greg Farrar/Issaquah Press

The City of Issaquah's water carnival, "Beat the Heat: Splash Day" was capped by a rainbow to win first place for Greg Farrar and the Issaquah Press in the Color Feature Category, Circulation Group IV of the 2011 Washington Better Newspaper Contest.

Register by May 24 for editors conference


egistration for the International Society of Weekly Newspaper Editors’ conference, set for June 26-July 2 in Bellingham, is due May 24. About 100 editors from the U.S. and Canada, as well as the United Kingdom and Australia, are expected to gather on the campus of Western Washington University. Session topics include writing stories and editorials that engage readers, open government, and access to public records.

One highlight is an opportunity to learn about the effects of Border Patrol on local communities and take related field trips. Critiques of editorial pages are available also. Frank Garred And not to be discounted is the chance to meet and spend time talking with 100 or so editors of weekly newspapers.

Frank Garred, conference coordinator and retired Port Townsend Leader publisher, urges editors at WNPA member newspapers to attend. “These folk are impassioned editorialists determined to preserve and perpetuate independent editorial leadership within their communities,” he said. An agenda and registration for the four-day conference are available at wnpa. com/events and at Or contact Garred, or (360) 385-3313.

Two new publishers named in Friday Harbor, Eastsound Sound Publishing Inc., Poulsbo


oxanne Angel has been promoted to publisher of the Journal of the San Juan Islands, Friday Harbor, and the Islands’ Weekly on Lopez Island. The promotion was announced by Lori Maxim, Sound Publishing’s Vice President for West Sound Operations. “Roxanne is a Roxanne real shining star Angel in our company,” Maxim said. “She brings a high See SOUND, page 2


MAY 2012


Beacon sheds light on ‘talking with’ vs. ‘talking to’ There’s no question that the news media are moving steadily into the digital world. Yes, many readers still want a newspaper in their hands, and that preference is expected to keep the presses rolling for many years. But much of the industry’s growth in readership is taking place on the digital side. Young readers, in particular, think digital first when they’re looking for information. At the same time, the revolution in social media is breaking down walls that used to dictate the “talking to” model; now everyone is “talking with.” That’s why we’re pleased to introduce a new platform for our newspapers’ websites, a model that enables our readers

to have a conversation with us and their neighbors. Called “Village Soup,” the model continues to include what readers Paul expect from us Archipley — lots of loBeaon cal news about Publishing, Mukilteo, the commuWNPA Past nity in which President they live. But unlike the traditional newspaper model that is based on a one-way conversation — us talking to you — our new websites make it easy for you to talk, too. Technically simple, the web-

sites enable anyone with access to a computer to participate more fully in their community, whether they’re merely responding to something they’ve read in the paper or whether they want to initiate a conversation. In addition, we’re giving the business community and nonprofit groups a new way to reach potential customers and supporters. Participants will be able to post unfettered, unfiltered news and offers on our websites. Under our bizmember® and orgmember® programs you can easily create and manage your own micro-webistes as well. These low-cost programs include instant feeds to your social media sites like Facebook and Twitter as well, so that you only have to post once, free-

ing up your busy schedule. And we have three websites,, and For our readers who want their local news, each website focuses on those specific communities; for our business and organization partners who want to attract a wider audience, their reach now expands to three contiguous communities. These days, with the steady simplification of computer use, nearly anyone can build and launch a website. But only newspapers have the unique ability to drive traffic. Community newspapers, in particular, continue to retain strong readership; after all, most people are interested in what’s

happening in their own backyard. Our newspapers will continue to offer regular in-depth news and features — an opportunity for leisurely discovery. At the same time, we’ll be increasing our coverage of more immediate and breaking news on our websites. We’ll be adding and improving over the next several weeks, so we hope you’ll visit the websites often and watch us grow. We believe this will be a model for the future of the news industry, and we hope you’ll join us as we embark on this new adventure. Reprinted with permission from Beacon Publishing, which launched its new websites in March.

Gig Harbor finds port in the digital future Peninsula Gateway, Gig Harbor

Officers: President: Jana Stoner, Northern Kittitas County Tribune, Cle Elum l First Vice President: Bill Forhan, NCW Media, Leavenworth l Second Vice President: Keven Graves, Nisqually Valley News, Yelm l Past President: Paul Archipley, Edmonds Beacon, Mukilteo Beacon l Secretary: Bill Will, WNPA, Seattle Trustees: Mike Dillon, Pacific Publishing Co., Seattle l Donna Etchey, North Kitsap Herald, Poulsbo l Eric LaFontaine, Othello Outlook l Imbert Matthee, Waitsburg Times l Lori Maxim, Sound Publishing l Stephen McFadden, RitzvilleAdams County Journal l Fred Obee, Port Townsend Leader Staff: Executive Director: Bill Will l Editor/Manager of Member Services: Mae Waldron


he weekly newspaper isn’t just weekly anymore. In most cases, it’s part of a multimedia company that works to publish news when it happens, whether it’s online, through social media or another platform. We’ve certainly seen the change in the past few years, and we’re continuing to adapt on a daily basis. Take this month as an example: l Recaps of Gig Harbor City Council meetings have been published online Monday nights, and bigger stories — such as the potential funding snafu that nearly derailed the $4.2 million, year-long construction project set to begin in May — were continually updated online. l When 7 Seas Brewing maneuvered a grain silo into the Peninsula Shopping Center at the site of the former QFC

FLETCHER Officers: President: W. Stacey Cowles, The Spokesman-Review 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) 6343838. Email:; URL:, in conjunction with Allied Daily Newspapers of Washington, P.O. Box 29, Olympia, WA 98507, (360) 943-9960. Email:

FOURNIER Media Services, Inc.

Brokerage — Consulting Appraisals JOHN L. FOURNIER, JR. P.O. Box 750 Prosser, WA 99350 Voice 206/409-9216 Fax 509/786-1779

in downtown Gig Harbor, we gathered information, posted it as the top story on our website and shared it with our news partner, The News Tribune. l We’re proud of our awardwinning sports coverage, but it’s often difficult to write about games that happened a week ago — at least by the time the newspaper hits your doorstep. So we’ve taken feature angles on print stories and worked to develop a blog called SportScene, where more immediate results, news and notes can be found. l On Fridays, we often take one of our print stories that looks toward a weekend event and repurpose it online to give it more of a fresh take for something people can do. The First Saturday Art Walk, Spring Fling, upcoming book signings at local bookstores or open houses are recent examples. l On our Facebook page,

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to 1999, after beginning her career working for a small daily in Woodward, Okla., in 1985. She is an honors graduate of the University of Oklahoma and serves on the board of directors of the Local Media Association (formerly Suburban Newspapers of America). Gloria is married with two sons, ages 14 and 17, and she and her family are excited about the move to Seattle and the Pacific Northwest. She will take up her new position in April and will be relocating her family over the summer. “I’m honored to join Sound Publishing and Black Press,” Fletcher said. “I’m anxious to be on-site to learn about the area, the plethora of print and digital news products and really get to know the many talented people who produce them. My family and I are very excited to get there.” Fletcher’s appointment was announced March 26 by Rick O’Connor, Chief Operating Officer of Black Press of Victoria, B.C., Sound Publishing’s parent company, and company owner David Black. “David and I are excited about the quality of leadership that Gloria brings to her new position and we hope to build on the new acquisitions we announced in the

fall of last year,” O’Connor said. O’Connor thanked both Josh O’Connor and Lori Maxim, Vice Presidents of Sound Publishing, for their leadership and guidance of Sound over the past two years. He also thanked executives Mark Warner and Don Kendall for their work in bringing both the Port Angeles and Sequim newspapers into the Sound group over the past few months. “Gloria is inheriting a group of publishing titles and websites that I think is poised for strong growth given the quality of assets, the health of the marketplace and talented employees,” O’Connor said. Based in Poulsbo and Bellevue, Wash., Sound Publishing, Inc., owns and operates 38 community newspapers and 14 Little Nickel publications in the greater Puget Sound area. In fall of 2011, Sound Publishing added the Peninsula Daily News (Port Angeles), Sequim Gazette and Forks Forum to their community newspaper holdings. Collectively, Sound Publishing has circulation of 773,126. Sound Publishing’s broad household distribution blankets the greater Puget Sound region, extending northward from Seattle to Canada, south to Salem, Ore., and westward to the Pacific Ocean.

you’ll often see links and photos to stories before they’re in print, giving readers a chance to comment or follow a story as it develops. Each reporter also has a Twitter account on which they post everything from headlines to personal commentary. What’s great about online and social media is the interactive nature with you, our readers. We still get a majority of our story tips by phone, but email, Facebook and Twitter are becoming more popular, particularly when it comes to events or special interests. Many business models have changed since the Great Recession, and news media is no different. We’re in the thick of the do-more-withless mantra, and somewhere in the process, we’ve become more connected than ever. Just as the City of Gig Harbor, Pierce County, multiple parks,


fire and school districts have crossed boundaries to find creative solutions, we’ve become stronger with a fresh focus of energy. We’re streamlining the process that each of our stories and photos goes through in order to get them to you faster and more efficiently. And we’re combining resources with other publications in certain situations to help tell the bigger picture. You have become a big part of that, too, with submitted information from events, a willingness to take a camera to something we’re unable to staff, and questions and comments on our online and social media platforms. Keep ’em coming. Our focus is everything Gig Harbor and Key Peninsula. You no longer have to wait until Wednesday for your news. In fact, you contribute every day. Reprinted with permission from the Peninsula Gateway.

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level of energy and professionalism to the Journal and Weekly. Roxanne is a strong leader who is quite involved in her community. I am confident in her abilities to give our readers and advertisers superior customer service.” Angel joined Sound Publishing as the Journal’s advertising manager in October 2011. She moved to San Juan from Memphis, Tenn., in 2007. Previously she was regional vice president of Arbonne International. She has a background in advertising and sales management, as a leadership coach, and as owner of her own advertising agency. “I’m truly excited and honored to take on my new role as publisher to both the Journal of the San Juan Islands and the Islands’ Weekly,” Angel said. “It is such a pleasure to work with our incredible team. As I continue to meet the many faces of our beautiful island community, I thank you for your dedication and for allowing our publications to help your businesses grow.” Colleen Armstrong was named publisher of the Islands’ Sounder on Orcas Island. Armstrong has served as associate publisher of the

Sounder since July 2011 and editor since 2008. Prior to that, she managed the Islands’ Weekly on Colleen Lopez for Armstrong five years. “I’ve enjoyed learning as my job has evolved,” said Armstrong. “The Orcas community has welcomed me into the fold, and I feel very blessed to work in a place I adore.” Armstrong and Angel succeed Marcia VanDyke, who has overseen Sound’s San Juan Islands newspaper operations for the past year. VanDyke had filled the role on an interim basis since longtime publisher Elyse Van den Bosch was injured in a car accident in January 2011. Van den Bosch retired in mid-2011, after working for the company for 17 years. VanDyke has resumed her duties as full-time publisher of the Whidbey News-Times (Oak Harbor) and South Whidbey Record (Langley) newspapers, and the Crosswind/Veterans’ Life monthly on Whidbey Island.



MAY 2012


Taking dim views in Sunnyside Executive session sparks turmoil   Yakima Herald-Republic


aybe they’ve hit rock bottom. That’s the hopeful view some Sunnyside City Council members have in the wake of a meeting in late March that unraveled into name-calling, catcalls and finger-pointing. “I’m hoping it was a wake-up call, and that from this point on we treat each other with respect,” said Councilman Nick Paulakis, who announced his resignation out of frustration at the council’s March 26 meeting. The next day he withdrew it and agreed to stay on at the request of colleagues and many community members. Disagreements happen in any body of elected officials, and Sunnyside certainly has had its share of turmoil the past few years. Five city managers have come and gone in the past 15 years, and three of them have lasted less than two years. But the latest disarray hit new lows. Audience members shouted from their seats.

Council members interrupted each other. Mayor Mike Farmer demanded order several times. “I’m tired of this bickering,” said Councilman Jim Restucci at one point, admitting he too has considered resigning. The spark for the conflict was a suggestion from Councilman Don Vlieger to censure and fine Councilwoman Theresa Hancock $500 for releasing notes of an executive session to news media last month unless she apologized and promised to not do it again. Hancock neither promised nor apologized. “I don’t think I’m the one that has anything to apologize for,” she said. Still, Vlieger said he probably will drop the issue. “I don’t see any fruit to it,” he said. “It’s not going to change her behavior.” The infamous executive session — a closed-door portion of a meeting in which elected officials are legally permitted to discuss some topics outside the public view — occurred Feb. 25. In the session, the council discussed the qualifications of City Manager Mark Gervasi, who previously had announced

his resignation but was open to staying until the city found a permanent replacement. According to Hancock’s notes, Gervasi was not at the meeting to request it be made public, which state law allows him to do if they are talking about him. Hancock also said council members, including Vlieger, discussed other employees. So, she turned over the notes to the Sunnyside Daily Sun News in what she called an effort to hold those council members accountable. Both sides say they have consulted lawyers who found their respective positions within the law. Paulakis, generally regarded as a calm, neutral figure in the fray, grew so fed up at Vlieger’s suggestion of penalties during the March 26 meeting that he announced his resignation. He meant it at the time, he said, but changed his mind after people at the meeting and the next day begged him to reconsider. Paulakis suggested the council bring in a facilitator to train members to work through conflict. Jason Raines and Craig

Hicks said they would be willing to discuss it, but questioned the necessity. “I don’t think we need to have someone to come hold our hands,” Raines said. “It’s not really that hard. It’s really not. For some reason some people want to take things personally and get upset and hold grudges, and we need to move past that.” Hicks said, “It sounds childish,” but admitted some legal training about open meetings might help. “Maybe we do need somebody,” he said. The Sunnyside City Council held such a training last May when Ramsey Rammerman, an attorney and a trainer with the city’s liability insurance firm, made a presentation about public records and open meeting laws. Vlieger and Farmer were absent. Hicks and Raines had not been elected yet. Restucci likened a facilitator to counseling in that all parties have to be willing to change. He’s unsure if that’s the case in Sunnyside. “Therapy doesn’t work unless you want it to work,” Restucci said.

Whatcom settles suit over email meeting Bellingham Herald


hatcom County paid activist Tim Paxton $2,000 to settle a lawsuit accusing the County Council of violating open public meetings law with email exchanges. A Whatcom County Superior Court judge on Wednesday, April 4, approved a settlement in the case, which was first filed by Paxton on Feb. 16. The county prosecutor’s office made an offer to settle it Feb. 27. “I think it’s a good result when there is a violation that was brought to the public attention and a government agency admits that there was a problem, and the attorneys’ fees aren’t terribly high,” said


attorney Greg Overstreet, who represented Paxton. In 2010, council members sent emails to the full council and, in two cases, one of them responded to the full council. In a 2011 letter to the county, state auditors said they believed those exchanges violated state law because they met the definition of a “meeting” that should have occurred in public. Paxton’s lawsuit came after the council on Jan. 24 approved a new policy on email usage that includes language meant to address the issue. It says council members wanting to send informational emails to a quorum of the council “must make it abundantly clear in the email that the information is being provided for review only

and that no response is desired.” Overstreet said there’s a perception that local governments don’t often get sued for violations of this sort, and the lawsuit was filed to send a message to local governments that the law is enforced. Paxton, a Bellingham resident, got his point across but didn’t cost the county a lot of money, which was good, Overstreet said. In the past, Overstreet has represented The Bellingham Herald in public records litigation. Randy Watts, chief civil deputy prosecutor for the county, said that, under state law, when a council member discusses public business with a majority of the council it must occur in a meeting.

Watts said the settlement “makes sense” for the county. “We thought, ‘Well, it makes the most sense to get it done quickly, rather than drag it out and run up the costs,’” he said. “Stewards of the public money - we thought ‘this is what we’ve got to do.’” He briefed the County Council in a closed-to-thepublic executive session, and a couple members didn’t believe the council violated the law. But most recognized that if they sought to fight it and later lost, the amount they would have to pay likely would have been more than $2,000, he said. Watts described it as a “pretty technical violation” of law. “We did change the policy as a result,” he said.

for the Columbus Dispatch. Berens said the project “underscores the importance and relevance of investigative reporting, and highlights the many brave people and fearless voices that put their trust in this newspaper to tell a difficult story that, all too often, was tragic and preventable.” “I am honored and incredibly humbled that the newspaper’s work has achieved this recognition,” he said. “Many readers wrote and said that the newspaper series saved lives. I can’t imagine a richer accomplishment.” Armstrong, 49, joined the Times in 2003, also from the Chicago Tribune. He has been a Pulitzer finalist four previous times, once for the Times, twice for the Tribune and once for a small paper in California. He was a key member of the

Times team that won the 2010 Pulitzer in breaking news. “To me, it’s about working at a place that has such a rich history of doing stories that matter in the community,” Armstrong said. “This is just another in a long line of stories that have that kind of impact.” Armstrong said he was particularly gratified by an email sent by a man whose wife was in the hospital and whom the doctors wanted to give methadone. The man said he had just read the series and knew the risks. “He was convinced we saved his wife’s life,” Armstrong said. “That’s one I think I’m going to tuck away.” Berens and Armstrong announced they would donate the $10,000 prize money to the Seattle Times newsroom for investigative-reporting training.

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of the methadone deaths. State health officials had disregarded repeated warnings about methadone’s risks, saying it was just as safe as any other painkiller. Immediately after the series was published in December, state Medicaid officials sent out an emergency advisory warning of the unique risks of methadone. In January, the state told doctors to use methadone only as a last resort. The warnings are likely to have an impact nationally, as Washington state’s pain program had been considered a national model. The Pulitzer Prize is the highest award in journalism and also is awarded in literature and drama. This is the Seattle Times’ ninth Pulitzer. The previous was in 2010, when the news staff won the prize in the

breaking-news category for its coverage of the shootings of four Lakewood police officers. The methadone series was directed and edited by Times investigations editor James Neff. Other key contributors were reporter Justin Mayo, photographer Mike Siegel, multimedia producer Danny Gawlowski, photo editor Fred Nelson and desk editor Jerry Holloron. The series previously had been recognized with the $35,000 Selden Ring Award from the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. It also won the Investigative Editors and Reporters Award, among others. Berens, 53, joined the Times in 2004, from the Chicago Tribune. He has twice previously been a Pulitzer finalist, once for the Times and once

High court: accident files public record Justices rule 7-2 against actions by State Patrol The Associated Press


ccident reports compiled by troopers and maintained in a state database should be treated as public records available by request, Washington’s Supreme Court ruled on April 12. Justices said in their 7-2 decision that the Washington State Patrol improperly withheld files from a person seeking location-specific records. He was asked to sign a document vowing that he would not use the records to sue the state. The state had argued that a federal statute shielded the records because the documents were located in an electronic database that the Department of Transportation utilized for a federal hazard elimination program. “Until 2003, citizens have been able to request and receive copies of accident reports specific to a location,” Justice Mary E. Fairhurst said in the majority opinion. “The state now asks us to place Washington citizens in a worse position than they would have been before (the federal statute). The state’s argument is rejected.” The court also awarded plaintiff Michael Gendler an unspecified amount of attorney’s fees for the case. A spokeswoman for Attorney General Rob McKenna says attorneys are reviewing the decision to see what options they might have. Gendler was paralyzed from the neck down in an October 2007 bike crash after his tire got caught in a grate on the Montlake Bridge in Seattle. He sued the state, claiming a gap between steel panels was more than a half-inch wide — enough to catch a bike tire. The state Department of Transportation agreed to pay $8 million to settle his lawsuit. The ruling does not specify why Gendler wanted the accident records. Justice James M. Johnson wrote the dissenting opinion, arguing that the evidence suggests the records are compiled for the federal hazard elimination program and that federal law shields records gathered for that purpose. Without further evidence that the state was maintaining these records to comply with state rather than federal highway law standards, the federal privilege from discovery should control the outcome of this case,” he wrote.


MAY 2012


Contest entries due BetterBNC 4.0 launched this month New features enhance on May 4, June 8 total contest experience


ichelle Wolfensparger of Whidbey News Group, Sound Publishing Inc., was the first to upload entries in the 2012 Washington Better Newspaper Contest. She submitted General Excellence entries for the Whidbey NewsTimes in Oak Harbor and the South Whidbey Record in Langley. WNPA members are among the first to use 4.0, launched this spring by SmallTownPapers, the contest’s site producers. At press time WNPA traffic on was following the traditional pattern of light activity. Eight entries were on the site and just two people had called WNPA with questions about the contest.


mallTownPapers, Inc., the But between April 25 leader in online journalism and the May 4 deadline contest management, is pleased for regular entries, the to announce the release of its latest site will be flooded with version of the popular BetterBNC entries and WNPA’s journalism contest platform, which phone lines will be busy. includes many new features proposed About 2,800 entries by contest administrators and users. are expected Most notably, in the 2012 BetterBNC 4.0 inON THE WEB cludes a module contest, to with be judged WNPA contest rules: an “Open Call” option, by members allowing a contest to of the New Submit entries: accept entries from York Press freelance journalAssociation. ists. Additionally, For entry fees, catusing the BetterBNC platform, egory descriptions, cover journalists or individuals working sheets, contest periods in media production/creative are and other information able to use their own personal acvisit the WNPA website. counts to make and manage their There is no fee for entries across multiple contests. General Excellence par“Our feature set is driven by over ticipation; it is a benefit 100 journalism contest hosting orof regular membership. ganizations and tens of thousands For password and of contestants,” notes Paul Jeffko, other information, who created BetterBNC in 2007. send an email to Mae “Because we are customer-driven, Waldron, mwaldron@ many of their suggestions are or call her at corporated into this new version.” (206) 634-3838 ext. 2. BetterBNC was created in re-

sponse to media organizations seeking a reliable, cost-effective, and time-saving contest option. BetterBNC offers a solution that makes it possible for the entire contest process to proceed seamlessly online, from entries to judging, with a centralized database accessible from any Internet connection. The list of BetterBNC users has quickly grown to include press associations, broadcast groups, press clubs, AP and SPJ chapters from across the country as well as the National Newspaper Association and in-house competitions for newspaper publishing companies. “Saving time has been the number one benefit for us,” says Bill Will, Executive Director of the Washington Newspaper Publishers Association, which is in its fifth year of using the BetterBNC platform for its annual contest. “With our reduced staff, that’s exactly what I was looking for when this project started.” “Going online with our Excellence in Journalism Awards has brought the entire process into the 21st century,” says Terry Williams, Executive Director of the San Diego Press Club. “Members appreciate the system for not just entering our contest but performing the

Two new studies: Readers need you

Study No. 1: Most engage with papers in different ways Newspaper Association of America


new study shows that in an average week, 74 percent of all Internet users rely on local newspaper media – digital as well as print – as key sources of news and information, and are engaging with their local newspaper across multiple platforms. Major findings of the survey show that among the large base of Internet users who engage with newspaper media, 54 percent are using more than one platform to access newspaper content in an average week. Sixty-seven percent use at least one of three common digital platforms – computers, smartphones or tablets – and they use each at multiple times over the course of the day for newspaper content. The study was conducted for the Newspaper Association of America by Frank N. Magid

Associates of Minneapolis. The research, presented in mid-April at NAA mediaXchange 2012 in Washington, D.C., also looks at what motivates consumers to turn to newspaper media for their news needs. Top answers to the question “Why Newspapers?” illustrate core newspaper brand values, including convenience, the extensive range and depth of news and information, and the amount of local news: “I like to follow the local newspaper in whichever format is convenient for me” – 89 percent for print-only readers, 88 percent for print + digital readers and 91 percent for digital-only readers; “Newspapers provide a broad range of news and information in one place” – 90 percent for print-only readers, 85 percent for print + digital readers and 83 percent for digital-only readers; “Newspapers provide more local news” – 89 percent for print-only readers, 84 percent for print + digital readers and 86 percent for digital-only readers; “I want the depth and detail that newspapers provide” – 80

percent for print-only readers, 82 percent for print + digital readers and 73 percent for digital-only readers. In addition to findings about news content, the survey demonstrates the strength and appeal of advertising in newspaper media: Sixty-six percent of digital newspaper media users act on digital ads; Sixty-one percent of tablet users act on newspaper tablet ads, while 59 percent of smartphone users act on ads on that device; Seventy-three percent have used newspaper printed circulars in the past 30 days, while 74 percent make a point of looking at printed Sunday circulars; Sixty-one percent say that newspapers provide more useful advertising. “This information gives us great insights into the drivers of engagement with newspaper media across platforms and shows that the enduring value of newspapers – depth, quality, quantity and dependability – extends to digital platforms as well,” said Caroline Little, NAA president and CEO.

Study No. 2: Pew survey rates papers tops for local news


early three quarters (72 percent) of adults are quite attached to following local news and information, and local newspapers are by far the source they rely on for much of the local information they need. In fact, local news enthusiasts are substantially more wedded to their local newspapers than others. They are much more likely than others to say that if their local newspaper vanished, it would have a major impact on their ability to get the local information they want. This is especially true of local news followers age 40 and older, who differ from younger local news enthusiasts in some key ways.

ON THE WEB Pew survey:

  One-third of local news enthusiasts (32 percent) say it would have a major impact on them if their local newspaper no longer existed, compared with just 19 percent of those less interested in local news. Most likely to report a major impact if their newspaper disappeared are local news followers age 40 and older (35 percent), though even among younger local news followers 26 percent say losing the local paper would have a major impact on them. In contrast, just 19 percent

of adults who do not follow local news closely say they would feel a major impact and fully half (51 percent) say they would feel no impact at all from the loss of their local paper. Only 34 percent of local news enthusiasts feel this way. These are among the main findings in a nationally representative phone survey of 2,251 adults by the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism and Internet & American Life Project, produced in association with the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Read the complete study online at; search on “quite attached.”

judging for sister press clubs.” For Contest Administrators, the ability to participate in the development of the online platform has been rewarding. Dick Lawyer, the administrator for the Pennsylvania AP Broadcasters contest, notes, “It’s really refreshing to work with a company that not only listens to your ideas but incorporates them on the spot.” With the launch of BetterBNC 4.0, administrators are able to choose to run a “closed” contest with contestants known in advance or create an “open call” contest allowing a broader entry field. Other features include establishing Individual User Accounts for both contestants and judges, and a designated ‘Contestant Manager’ who can authorize users to make entries on behalf of their organization. Freelancers will manage their own account and provide information such as their trade credentials. When they request to enter an open call contest, the Contest Administrator can simply enable their participation. BetterBNC 4.0 is now available. For more information, visit


Better Newspaper Contest Regular entries due Tourism Special Section entries due

June 28 WNPA Board Meeting, Bellingham Sept. 27

WNPA Board Meeting, Yakima

Sept. 27-29 125th Annual Convention, Yakima Details, registration at

SU hiring part-time journalism faculty


eattle University’s Communication Department invites applications from working professionals for several parttime faculty positions open in the coming academic year. The adjunct faculty members will teach one or more of the following undergraduate journalism courses: 1. Introduction to Digital Production, including using audio and video for storytelling. 2. Graphic Communication, including the fundamentals of visual literacy. 3. Advanced Online Journalism Production. 4. Online/Broadcast Media Writing. 5. Entrepreneurial Journalism. Successful candidates will have the ability to teach in fall, sinter, or spring quarter during the academic year 2012 – 2013. SU is seeking candidates with significant relevant professional experience in journalism and an appropriate Bachelor’s or advanced degree. Applicants should submit

all material electronically to the Journalism Committee at: Include a statement of teaching philosophy and professional accomplishments, a resume, and the contact information of three references (including e-mail). Please provide any evidence of successful teaching experience, especially at the university level. Review of applications will begin May 12, 2012 and continue until the positions are filled. Seattle University, founded in 1891, is a Jesuit Catholic university located on 48 acres on Seattle’s Capitol Hill. More than 7,500 students are enrolled in undergraduate and graduate programs within eight schools. U.S. News and World Report’s “Best Colleges 2011” ranks Seattle University among the top 10 universities in the West that offer a full range of masters and undergraduate programs. Seattle University is an equal opportunity employer.



MAY 2012

Web sites for the Peninsula Gateway of Gig Harbor (left) and the Puyallup Herald became subsites of Tacoma’s News Tribune (below right) in a reorganization of TNT’s digital strategies.

Web changes for weeklies in Puyallup, Gig Harbor

Herald circulation expanded through East Pierce County


he News Tribune in Tacoma last month began testing total-market coverage of its sister newspaper, the Puyallup Herald, in the Herald’s circulation area of East Pierce County. Carriers already deliver the weekly Herald to more than 13,000 TNT subscribers in East Pierce, and have been doing so for the past several years. But until April, TNT had been mailing inserts to the area’s nonsubscribers. Executive editor Karen Peterson, who announced the program, is watching to see whether the changes will build newspaper readers and help local small businesses, whose ads get more readers now. Coincident with the broader distribution, TNT changed the Herald’s print product to a single section instead of two, though news coverage is un-


Puyallup Herald: Peninsula Gateway: changed—high school sports, event calendars, business and residents’ profiles, and columns by local writers. The Herald’s online presence changed as well. The Herald’s longtime site,, has a new section, “TNT Puyallup,” that connects to stories TNT reporters produce about the area. And similarly, there’s a new section for the Herald within TNT’s site at As Herald reporters post stories more frequently than the cycle associated with Wednesdays’ newspapers, will develop as a resource for breaking news.

Herald stories that have relevance to readers living outside the immediate Puyallup area are being picked up for printing in the next day’s TNT, too. TNT made similar changes to the web presence of the Peninsula Gateway of Gig Harbor, its other sister weekly. Readers can access a Gateway section on the TNT site, and Gateway reporters are starting to file stories more frequently

and see them in the print version of TNT. “There’s nothing revolutionary about this idea,” Peterson wrote in her announcement. “It’s pretty simple; readers want news from their own communities, and advertisers want to reach local customers. We’re trying to provide more of both in print and online.”

Sun’s Guide life of the party

Bremerton daily builds guide brand, women’s event


n April launch party for the West Sound Guide, an annual resident and visitor guide published for decades by the Kitsap Sun of Bremerton, was the first of two events held by the newspaper this spring. “We’re so pleased with how the product has progressed, so we’ve invited advertisers, civic leaders and other colleagues in business to a WSG launch party the day before its distributed to our readers,” said Mike Stevens, director of community publications and marketing at the Sun.


Kitsap Sun: West Sound Guide: Last year’s guide introduced a magazine-style format with new graphic appeal and more detail on events. New this year are profiles of local people. “(Editor) David Nelson has done a terrific job adding depth and flavor,” said Stevens. The launch party was envisioned as a way to celebrate the community, thank the guide’s advertisers and further the brand — and start the newspaper’s campaign for the 2013 guide. It was expected to draw about 100 people for snacks

and a range of beverages, a gift bag with a guide and other goodies, as well as tours of the newspaper’s pressroom. The Sun’s second event is the second annual Women Today, held May 4 and 5 in the Kitsap Sun Pavilion at the Kitsap County Fairgrounds. The twoday celebration features more than 100 exhibitors promoting goods and services to a target audience. The Sun enjoyed a very successful first year with Women Today, drawing more than

Newspaper’s plight changes foreclosure rule The Associated Press


2,000 attendees. “We learned in the process that women are an incredibly engaged and engaging audience. This audience is energized and ready to come and do business,” Stevens said.

Retired media spokesman to seek sheriff’s post Kent Reporter

John Urquhart, former King County Sheriff’s Office media spokesman, expects to formally announce in late April that he’s running for King County Sheriff. If Urquhart decides to run, he would be up against interim Sheriff Steve Strachan, a former Kent Police chief, on November’s ballot to replace Sue Rahr. Rahr resigned in March to become director of the Washington State Criminal Justice Training Commission in Burien.

Urquhart, 64, of Mercer Island, said in an email April 19 that he still wants to talk with his second oldest daughter, who is 27, after she flies into town April 23 from her home in New York before making an official decision to run. “I have not had a chance to go over the ramifications of a run for Sheriff with her one-on-one,” Urquhart said. “So we will have a family meeting, and assuming I get buy-in from everyone, I will formally announce my candidacy sometime next week.

“Frankly, I’m assuming they will be okay with this so my planning is for an affirmative announcement. However, I am duty-bound to give them the option.” Urquhart retired in 2011 after 24 years with the Sheriff’s Office. He worked many years as the media spokesman and also served as a patrol officer, field training officer, narcotics and vice detective and as an administrative aide to Rahr and former Sheriff Dave Reichert.

oreclosure trustees would be banned from having financial interests in Idaho newspapers that run their legal notices, according to a bill that cleared the Idaho Senate. The March 27 28-6 vote sent the Newspaper Association of Idaho-backed bill to Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter. The newspaper group brought the measure after the Kuna-Melba News in southwestern Idaho was purchased by a company linked to the Northwest’s largest foreclosure trustee. Idaho requires legal notices be published at statutorily fixed rates in the local paper before auctioning a foreclosed home. Consequently, the Newspaper Association of Idaho says it’s unfair for a trustee to buy up small newspapers, because their distribution is too small to provide adequate notice to people interested in the auction. Sen. Jim Rice argued Idaho should prevent trustees from hiding their notices in corners.


MAY 2012


War was ‘hell’ for WNPA and its members

Sherman said it; in ‘41 it came true for state’s press


t was the most dramatic event of a generation— the United States participation in World War II from 1941 to 1945. It touched everyone. All who survived it in the field, the sea, the air or the home front have their own store of memories. Newspapers and their personnel were affected, but not more than others. The shock of the Dec. 7, 1941, bombing of Pearl Harbor galvanized the nation to action. Radio and newspapers spread first word of the tragedy, then threw themselves enthusiastically into the war effort to defeat Germany and Japan. Patriotic fervor was at high pitch. Newspapers — as many other businesses — soon found personnel flocking to recruiting centers to sign up for whatever branch of the armed services would accept them. Volunteers ranged from the publishers of newspapers to the printers’ devils. Some of the state’s weekly newspapers found it necessary to suspend publication. Particularly that was true in cases where the publisher donned a uniform and could find no one to take over for him.

Coping with shortages

Shortages quickly appeared and rationing soon followed as the nation threw most every resource it had into the war effort. The state’s weekly newspapers shared in the shortages, albeit they were considered important morale factors on the

home front, and particularly when copies could reach the local men and women far from home doing their part in the battle. Rationing of print paper began in January 1943. TWN offered this insight: “In this first rationing there appears to be nothing in the program which will affect the smaller newspapers, the effort apparently being to conserve print paper by having the larger newspapers eliminate such news and features not especially pertinent to the welfare of the average reader. However newspapers have been given to understand there will be other cuts in this rationing program and that as soon as publishers have adjusted their production to meet this first 10 percent cut there will be more curtailments.” Costs shot up, too, and newspapers adjusted to meet them. As an example, at the beginning of 1943 the Lynden Tribune raised its subscription rate to $2.50 a year from $2, a move that led publisher Sol Lewis to believe that the Tribune had become the state’s first $2.50 a-year weekly.

ing information on a local boy in the service, cracking one of the censorship rules. The error was not discovered until the edition was off the press. “To correct the oversight the publisher knifed the article, leaving a hole in the paper. Naturally every reader was curious to know what this was all about. The publisher now claims this is a proof of the reading power of his publication; telephone was constantly in use wanting to know why the deletion. “Next issue gave the explanation, but that only tended to increase the desire to know what was contained in the story.”

Publishing within censorship rules

Covering costs of war publicity

All newspapers faced the vexing problem of self-censorship. There were sensitive areas that were troublesome to the conscientious editor. All newspapers had in hand the Code of Wartime Practices issued by the Office of Censorship. Without disclosing names, the February 1943 TWN related this censorship tale. “The publisher of a weekly newspaper slipped when report-

A flood of free government publicity aimed at stimulating the war effort hit smaller newspapers early in the war. “Snowing publishers under with unpaid government publicity at a time when normal advertising sources are dying off one by one is the surest and quickest way of killing the country’s newspapers,” Ralph Pinkerton of the Ferndale Record said, according to an account in

TWN, February 1942. Pinkerton was addressing a group of the state’s newspapermen who had gathered in Seattle to determine how to handle what was described as a flood of unpaid publicity. “The government recognizes the vital part the newspaper plays in disseminating civilian defense instruction, recruiting advertising and defense bonds publicity,” Pinkerton said, “but with our income from commercial advertising cut to the bone, how are newspapers to continue in operation without an income? “Some substitute for this lost lineage must be found if newspapers are to continue their job. It looks as though the answer lies in a government advertising campaign,” he added. Publisher John L. Fournier of the Kent News-Journal offered a partial solution to the problem when he explained to the group the program his newspaper had adopted. Fournier explained how Kent merchants were made to realize that they should do their part toward absorbing the cost of printing material sent out for publication by the government. “By running two promotional pages each month and charging each advertising merchant $2 a month on a yearly or semi-yearly contract, we are able to shift part of the load where it belongs — to the local businessmen,” Fournier told his colleagues. The cooperative page, publicizing the Red Cross, defense stamps and enlistment, was adopted by a number of Washington newspapers to keep those activity before the public without sinking the

newspaper under the barrage of free publicity matter that emanates from government bureaus, TWN explained.

Publishers, TWN stayed on task

Had there ever been any doubt, newspapers proved their worth during the long war. They carried the good news and the bad. As never before they became indispensable part of the fabric of America. When necessary they cut out advertising in order to print news. They sent free copies of the newspaper to all from their communities serving their country in uniform. Newspapers did their part — and more. Pages of TWN chronicled much of the community newspaper at war. It attempted a seemingly impossible task of carrying a list of all in the newspaper fraternity and their families who went into uniform. It kept newspapers abreast of the changing governmental regulations, and did it best to keep publishers’ morale high. August 1945 did arrive at last and the war was over. The world as it was perceived before 1941 was changed forever. The task of returning to a civilian economy began. Technological advance which had been secret for use in pursuit of the war victory began to emerge in public view. The past was as dead as the vanquished foe. The long-awaited postwar era, so rich in promise, was at hand. Excerpted from an article written by Don N. Crew, WNPA 100th anniversary writer, in June 1987 TWN.

Young journalists most likely to ask the hard questions


he bar should have been smoky, and we should have spent preliminary time talking sports (or cars, or music, or “Are you still seeing her?”) until our sixth or seventh beers, but this is 2012, not 1978, so the post-deadline conversation got straight to the point: What are we, in newspapers, doing wrong? My two companions that late afternoon weren’t even born until I was 30-plus and well into my reporting career, so other than the fact that we had been toiling together in the same newsroom for a few days, we didn’t have a lot in common. And that, actually, was why I brought up the “What are we … doing wrong?” question. I have my theories, of course, but if the reporters’ responses were, as I expected, all the way on the opposite end of the spectrum, I was going to slap my forehead and predict doom because the newbies and the old-timers would never agree on a cure. Instead, the talkative reporter said he thought his generation was not as anti-newspaper as geezers my age assume. (Out of respect, he didn’t call me or my contemporaries “geezers,” but I knew what he meant from that tiny smirk at the corner of

his mouth.) He said there are plenty in his generation who think newspapers really need to be more Jim seriously Stasiowksi dedicated to writing explanatory, analytical stories instead of the superficial, fillthe-paper-with-mediocrity stuff that spreads like desperation. The reticent reporter seemed to agree, and I sat there feeling like Gilligan when the rescue finally arrived. Yes, I thought, at least in this bar, on this evening, the two platoons of newspaper soldiers are marching in the same direction. That conversation might have been just a few-pints-passingin-the-night moment, but then I had two other exchanges with budding reporters. In separate phone calls, I was interviewing one graduating from college, and another probably in her mid30s and about to change careers. I asked both the same question: “What is the biggest flaw you see in newspaper writing?” Both answered the same way: Too many stories rely on the

simplistic give-both-sides-andlet-the-reader-decide format. “Reporters aren’t aggressive enough,” one said. The other, independent of the first, agreed: “No skepticism, just predictable he-said-she-said stuff, and a lot of quotations, which sound colorful I guess, devoted to personal attacks.” That’s the way too many newspapers work these days. The fact that four young journalists diagnose our problem as twin superficialities – the lack of explanation, the absence of requiring sources to answer skeptical questions – gives me hope. It’s a sign, I think, that journalism is swinging back toward the idea that not all writing needs to be bite-sized to be attractive. After the short-isalways-better phase that lasted from the mid-1970s through most of the ’90s, we shifted into the write-three-quick-sentencesand-get-it-on-the-Web-pronto era, which is still going on. But in a way, the Web has paid an unexpected dividend. It provides the keep-it-short devotees an outlet for breaking news, and that in turn allows paper newspapers to tiptoe back into what they were good at before the short-is-always-

better philosophy disconnected (or, at least, limited) their oxygen: thoughtful, analytical writing that doesn’t adhere to arbitrary length limits. Another young reporter, not one of the four mentioned above, recently told me she is so enamored of the long stories in The New Yorker, she takes unread issues on long flights so she can catch up. (I should have ’fessed up that my own stack of New Yorkers is getting taller, not smaller.) There isn’t enough evidence, of course, to declare that the lengthy, textured, wellreasoned analytical news story is becoming more prevalent, crowding out the superficial give-both-sides-space-to-hurlinvective pieces. And I have no proof that length limits are phasing out, even though every reporter in my era swore they inhibited our creativity. The anti-length-limits argument sounded very convincing when a half-dozen reporters (with the corresponding halfdozen levels of creative talent, usually starting with zero) sat around smoky bars after deadline and cured all of what ailed newspapers in general and our local paper in particular. A lot of that drinking stopped

when the Mothers Against Drunk Driving justifiably shamed lawmakers and police into arresting those of us who made the roads so dangerous. We learned the lesson. Let’s hope that, if more detailed stories are returning, we also learned a lesson from those length limits. In writing news, discipline is not a dirty word, a story’s central conflict should show up before the first subheadline, and that brilliant paragraph you wrote to describe the sunrise belongs in your novel, not in your explanation of a zoning change. THE FINAL WORD: May we order a mandatory and immediate halt to adding the phrase “on steroids” every time we want to point out how big something is? “(Whatever) on steroids” has become as tired as another ubiquitous modifier from not long ago: “the (whatever) from hell.” When we promote such fad usages, we surrender our newspapers’ role as defenders of the language. Jim Stasiowski welcomes your questions or comments. Call him at 775 354-2872 or write to 2499 Ivory Ann Drive, Sparks, Nev. 89436.



MAY 2012

Notes from everywhere: Here’s to 2018 There’s no room for gloom and doom in print


t’s been an interesting few weeks. In five out of six cities, chairs had to be added to the rooms to accommodate attendees. In New York, I received spontaneous applause when I told the audience to “quit running their newspapers as if all their business is coming from mobile” when most of their profits are coming from print. In Texas, I was introduced as “probably the Kevin most important Slimp Director, voice in the Institute of newspaper in- Newspaper dustry today.” Technology Geesh. The things people say. In Pennsylvania, the woman who introduced me instructed the audience to stand so I could tell everyone I had another “standing room only” group in Harrisburg. Here’s what I’m noticing. People are having fun again in our business. For a few years, conventions were overshadowed with a feeling of gloom and doom. It seems to me that 2012 may be the year that the vale of gloom is lifted and we start enjoying our work again as an industry. Convention registrations have been up. Audiences have been larger. More people have been out on the dance floor. These are all good signs. In South Carolina last week, an editor told me his paper had sent more than 20 attendees to their annual state convention. “It’s the first time we’ve done that in recent history,” he said. Obviously it’s not fun for everyone. I had an enlightening lunch with two executives with a chain of metro papers a few days ago. I told them about the larger crowds this year and profits that seem to be on the way up, instead of down. “I hear the community papers are doing well,” one of them said. “They really know how to meet the needs of their readers and it’s paying off.” We discussed the “mistaken idea” — their words, not mine — that consolidation leads to profits. I mentioned that I had recently worked for a client who used to be a big dog with one of the major newspaper groups. She told me she was part of the inner circle that originally made the decision to send their production and customer service to other countries. When I asked how that

went, she was very blunt. “It was a disaster.” Apparently it didn’t take long to move everything back. I’ve heard the same story from publishers with other groups that had similar experiences. My two lunch friends told me their company had come “perilously close” to moving production overseas. “Thank goodness we didn’t,” said one of them. He went on to add that he felt it was “a mistake to assume that consolidation increases profits.” Speaking of their efforts to consolidate properties, using central locations for producing multiple newspapers, he said that he would bet that it ended up “costing more money in the long run” than keeping everything in separate locations. I certainly don’t know everything, but I will share a

little of what I’ve noticed in my travels of late. It seems that papers I’ve visited that are produced locally, rather than at centralized facilities, seem to be having fewer problems with ad sales, reduced circulation and other problems that have made so much news over the past three years. I could venture my own guesses as to why that seems to be the case, but I’m sure there are locally owned and produced papers that are having plenty of struggles of their own. They just don’t happen to be locations I’ve visited. Having said that, I’ve probably visited more newspapers that are being produced in centralized locations over the past year than the other way around. And most of them seem to be doing well. If I were drawing a chart of the entire newspaper industry,

I’d probably divide the page into two halves. One one half would be “Profitable newspapers.” On the other, would be “Struggling newspapers.” It probably wouldn’t surprise too many people in the business to know that community papers seem to be doing better than larger papers. It also wouldn’t surprise most industry professionals to hear that locally owned papers seem to be fairing better than newspapers owned by large groups. If I might paraphrase my lunch mate, I believe this has a lot to do with understanding your community. Reporters, editors, publishers, ad staffs and others at our papers understand their communities better than someone looking in from the outside. And it seems to me that this results in stronger sales and increased circulation.

Time will tell, I suppose. The dean of a major school of journalism told me four years ago that he believed there wouldn’t be a single printed newspaper left in the United States by the year 2018. I told him I believed that might be the dumbest idea I’d ever heard. When he asked why I felt that way, I told him that I knew my community. And if all the other papers closed down, I’d start one and make a fortune. It looks like I won’t have to do that. It’s been four years and none of the papers in my area have closed. I’m glad 2012 seems to be a better year for our industry. Even some of my metro clients are telling me things are looking up. I hope the journalism dean and I cross paths in 2018. I’d love to compare notes.

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MAY 2012


CAREER MOVES n Greg Skinner, regional editor of the Bremerton Patriot, Central Kitsap Reporter (Silverdale) and Kitsap Navy News, has added the Port Orchard Independent to his roster of responsibilities. The regional editorship is part of Sound’s overall strategy to reorganize the business model at its newspapers, publisher Sean McDonald reported. Skinner joined the company in March 2011 to launch the Kitsap Navy News, and soon was promoted to editor of the Bremerton and Silverdale newspapers. Tim Kelly, whose position as POI editor was eliminated, has been named editor of the Kitsap Peninsula Business Journal. Lary Coppola, the Journal’s publisher and founder, made that announcement. n At the Ferndale Record, reporter Mark Reimers has succeeded Megan Claflin as editor. Reimers has been a reporter and photographer at the Record and its sister newspaper, the Lynden Tribune, for more than four years. Claflin had been with the Record for two years, and accepted a position at another media organization.

n Louis DeRosa is the new advertising sales consultant at the Marysville Globe and Arlington Times. He started in sales in 2000 in New Haven, Conn., where he worked first in inside sales for SBC/SNET Yellow Pages, then as senior account executive for Choice One Communications. A move to Logix Communication in Ft. Worth, Texas, in 2006 furthered DeRosa’s cold-calling skills. He ranked in the top 25 percent of the company’s 200 sales representatives, making 50 to 60 cold calls a day, and more than 100 outbound calls a day on phone days. Here in the Northwest, DeRosa joined Zip Local in 2009, selling Yellow Page and Internet advertising and soon ranking at the top in his territory for months at a time. n After more than 24 years, the Star in Grand Coulee published the final “Morgan’s Musings,” a local hunting and fishing column that Reg Morgan has written weekly since July 9, 1987. Morgan’s last column recalled favorite trips from the Coulee to the Canadian Princess salmon fishing resort on Vancouver Island,

and thanked his supporters — Linda Morgan, his wife and reviewer; Gwen Hilson, the Star staff member who typed the columns; and Scott Hunter, editor and publisher, who offered constructive criticism. n Longtime newspaper executive Bill Kunerth has been named publisher of the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner, owner William Dean Singleton announced. Kunerth, 57, was publisher of the Idaho State Journal in Pocatello for the past nine years, and previously was publisher of the Daily Record in Ellensburg. He has been in the newspaper business for more than 30 years, and was exposed to it in his youth through his father’s three decades of employment as a journalism professor at South Dakota State University and at Iowa State University. Kunerth succeeds Kathryn Strle, who has managed the newspaper since August, when publisher Marilyn Romano left to join Alaska Airlines. n John Hughes has been named 2012 Citizen of the Year by the Daily World in Aberdeen. He had been with

the Daily World for 42 years, most recently as editor and publisher, when he left in 2008 to become the chief historian for the state’s Legacy Project. Hughes was honored, along with the firefighter and police officer of the year, at an April 19 banquet in Aberdeen. n After nearly four years with community newspapers, sportswriter Tim Watanabe has left the Redmond and BothellKenmore Reporter newspapers for a job outside the industry. Taking on his beat are editor Bill Christianson and staff reporter Samantha Pak. n Enumclaw Courier-Herald publisher Brennan Purtzer announced a number of staff changes. Brenda Sexton, who had served as senior reporter for many years, has retired. Former editor Kevin Hanson stepped into the open position after Dennis Box was named editor of the two CourierHerald newspapers, Enumclaw and Bonney Lake, earlier this spring. Sports reporter John Leggett is no longer on the staff but will continue to write sports columns. Leggett handled behind-the-scenes

work for the newspaper on “Roundball at the Rock,” a high school basketball game held to benefit the food program Rotary First Harvest. In the circulation department, Linda Bonhus left the newspaper in March. Last year she stepped down from circulation manager to assistant to provide her successor, Dawn Inmon, with real-life experience in the role. n Sharon Pian Chan has been named the new associate opinions editor/digital for the Seattle Times. She also becomes a member of the newspaper’s editorial board. In her new role, Chan will use digital tools to expand the Times opinion pages as a forum for community dialogue, and also manage guest column submissions. Most recently, Chan was a senior producer for the Seattle Times home page and mobile platforms. She spent 12 years as a Times reporter. Chan is currently serving as vice president for UNITY Journalists, a nonprofit alliance that advocates diversity in the news, and has served as national president of the Asian American Journalists Association.

Lynden publisher buys Foothills Gazette


The P-I Globe, pictured here just before the Seattle Post-Intelligencer went online-only, will live on as a city landmark.

P-I Globe gets new life as a landmark

ewis Publishing Co., Inc. is the new owner of the Foothills Gazette, a monthly tabloid publication serving communities along the Highway 9 corridor in eastern Whatcom County. The paper has free circulation of just under 4,000 and is distributed through store racks, in restaurants and in similar locations. Becca Schwarz and Brent Cole had published the Gazette for more than six years. In announcing the change to readers, Schwarz and Cole said selling the paper was “a bittersweet decision for us— a difficult one, but one we had to make. “It has often been a struggle to keep the newspaper pub-

lishing, but we have loved being able to serve the community,” they said. Though the couple typically published the Gazette twice a month, they had changed the frequency to monthly in January. Publisher Mike Lewis plans to maintain monthly publication, and the April issue was the first produced by his staff. “I delivered to the higher mountain spots, which was really interesting,” Lewis said. “Everyone was very receptive, and they really like having a paper that covers their area.” Lewis will share stories from the Tribune where it


he P-I Globe was designated as a city landmark April 18 by the City of Seattle’s Historic Preservation Board. It’s the final step in a long process that ensures the globe will be preserved by the Museum of History & Industry regardless of the fate of the Post-Intelligencer, which stopped publishing a printed newspaper three years ago. The Hearst Corp., which owns the P-I, donated the globe to MOHAI after the preservation board’s vote. The 30-foot-diameter neon globe has spun above the newspaper’s headquarters since 1948 and is considered an icon. Three former journalists on the Seattle City Council — Tim Burgess, Jean Godden and Sally Clark — moved last year to formally preserve the globe. MOHAI has said it will move the globe from its location on Elliott Avenue, but is still negotiating with the city about where to put it. It has started a fundraising campaign to restore it.

The Foothills Gazette, a monthly tab, serves Maple Falls and nearby communities west of Mount Baker. makes sense, and would like to add features and sports to the hard news topics the paper has been covering well. With Lynden Tribune reporter Brent Lindquist, who grew up in the Foothills area, the company has a head start on covering the Gazette’s news beats.

Lewis has assigned a fairly new salesperson to the Gazette. “She loves to cold call and meet people,” Lewis said, “so she’s been up in that area as well as covering other territories.” In addition to the Tribune and Gazette, Lewis also publishes the Ferndale Record.

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     

                 

TWN0512 - The Washington Newspaper May 2012  

Trade association newsletter, Allied Daily Newspapers of Washington, Washington Newspaper Publishers Association

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