Become your dream. In New York this summer I saw this chalked on the sidewalks of Central Park. This happened to me six months ago when I became Publisher of the Santa Cruz Sentinel.
There are about 1,350 daily newspapers in the United States and it’s been a dream a mine since I was 17 to be the leader of one. There were more of them 25 years ago, of course. Despite that, I am optimistic that for years to come we will continue to serve the community as a sort of public square for news and information. Folks underestimate us.
These past six months have been busy learning about Santa Cruz and understanding our operation’s strengths and weaknesses. I’ve joined the boards of United Way and the Santa Cruz County Business Council and I became a member of Santa Cruz Rotary. I have met a lot of people and still have many yet to meet.
It feels like the right time to begin my blog. Its purpose will be to inform the community about ourselves. There are lots to write about given the changes in media these days. Newspapers are adapting to a world where it’s more competitive than ever to capture the attention of consumers. Our job is to adjust what we’re doing to meet this challenge. I will strive to write every two weeks or so.
A quick bit about me–I’m from Grand Junction, Colorado. I went to Syracuse University to study business and finance. From there, I went back to Colorado where I worked at the Daily Camera in Boulder. After seven years there, I spent a year in Los Angeles at the Daily News and the past eleven years at the San Jose Mercury News in a variety of advertising leadership roles. I used to work for Mike Jung, the Sentinel’s previous publisher. I am grateful for the work he did. The Sentinel grew stronger under his stewardship.
I have a wife, Sarah and we have two boys. She teaches Spanish and they play basketball and football.
We’ve already made a bunch of improvements. We enlarged our daily weather graphic, expanded our Home and Garden content, added an Auto section and returned our Thursday Guide section to a tabloid format. In addition, we now have Android and iPhone apps to complement our website and its accompanying mobile version. Thus, there are lots of ways to access the content we create and the content we assemble from members of the community.
I’ll close this first post by first expressing my gratitude to everyone that has welcomed me to Santa Cruz. You certainly can assess a new community quickly by the welcomes you receive and Santa Cruz has been tremendous in welcoming me to the community. Also, the Sentinel team has been great. I find them to be professional, low drama and eager to participate in transforming the Sentinel for the future.