Foster: What a difference a year makes!
Given the deep history of this community, I’m sure that seems a bit strange. But for me, Sept. 17 marked a monumental day.
Precisely one year earlier, I walked into the hallowed halls of Colorado Publishing House, charged with determining whether this part of town could support a hyper-local community newspaper. In addition with making that call, I was to discover what the paper should contain, how it should look, how we could make it fiscally viable and how often it should be printed.
Last year at this time, we envisioned launching as a print quarterly. But you said no, that was insufficient; so we launched with a plan to go to press every other month. Now, five editions in, we are thrilled to tell you that this will be the first of our monthly publications!
That’s right: Starting now, your Southeast Express will be heading to postboxes, news stands and high-traffic destinations every month. That means more news, opinions, sports, features, calendar listings, ads and healthy lifestyles as requested by you, for you.
We’re also going to be upping our digital game. For the past several weeks, we have endeavored to bring you at least one new story, via our website and social media outlets, per day. Being an admittedly small-but-mighty editorial team, that doesn’t always work out. But overall, I’m pleased with what we’ve been able to accomplish in a very short time.
In truth, “pleased” doesn’t really describe it. There are so many more appropriate words that I could use to express how you and your support have made me feel — words like “humbled,” “embraced,” “blessed” and, above all, “grateful.”
You see, in more than a decade in the newsroom, I’ve had a lot of phenomenal experiences. I first helped open and then spent a night inside a shelter for battered women and children; I interviewed both a man who would become president and a woman who would try to be vice president; I brought awareness in two communities to the impact opioids and other controlled substances have had on the newborn population; and I had the chance to help a family battle the complicated web that is the Colorado Medicaid system and its interactions with private insurance companies.
But for all of those impactful, purposeful stories, I can easily say this: The Express is the most important journalistic project I have ever had the pleasure of undertaking. There is something magical, and perhaps a bit maniacal, about launching a newspaper from scratch and seeing it come to fruition. It’s certainly not something I undertook in a vacuum: I’ve been blessed with the help of a pair of energetic account executives, a select cadre of hard-working staff journalists and student interns, a pair of eagle-eyed copy editors, a dynamo team of designers, an endlessly positive senior consultant and a chairman with a big vision. Each member of our squad is a profoundly talented person who challenges me daily to make this paper the product you deserve.
And of course it took you, Southeast. From day you, you have encouraged, supported and engaged with us, and for that I am profoundly grateful. It’s your enthusiasm that fuels the “Express Train” with every single edition.
So thanks for a great year, Southeast. I can’t wait to see where the next one takes us.
Contact Southeast Express Editor and General Manager Regan Foster at (719) 578-2802 or firstname.lastname@example.org.