Your weekly conversation with John Derby

May 3, 2018

As a three-time retirement failure, we were concerned what would happen when we really turned the keys of the newspaper company over to the employees.

It was a scary decision after 54 years of publishing a group of newspapers which has served seven communities in the valley.

That probably was why, on the other retirements, we still felt we had to cover any mistakes.

This time, we understood that if people are not allowed to make mistakes, then they will never learn.

We have made mistakes, too many to remember, but many of them taught us how to do a better job.

This last season while we were in Mexico, the team who produces our newspapers, did an amazing job, and we are very proud of them. Did they make mistakes? Yes, a few, but thus far, those were little in comparison to the ones which we have made in 54 years.

The main thing is that the newspapers have survived in excellent shape. We have maintained almost all the advertising support from the community which we had, and some new business accounts have been added.

The news content and photo coverage has been excellent and balanced, as well as remaining positive.

We are seeing growth in all the communities we serve. We see more people turning to more education to address the problem of low wages in the valley. Housing is bouncing back, and so are jobs.

So many activities are going on, it is a strain on our staff to give them all coverage. We appreciate all the help we have received in getting these stories and pictures in the papers.

More people than ever are turning to us to report on these activities, and we appreciate that and do our very best to see that they get coverage.

Our group of newspapers suffer with the low income which comes with the industry, but the employees do not dwell on the low wages. They do their job, and leave the complaining to someone else. They take pride in the product they produce.

Just last week, we wrote to the staff, that the issue of the newspaper was one of the best we had ever seen, and we would match it with any other community newspaper in the state or the county. We aren’t the only one who feels that way because one member of our staff received top honors in two categories in a recent statewide journalism contest.

Finally, we thank the communities and our readers for your support. We do receive repeated emails about the great work the staff is doing.

Coming from you, the readers, this is even more important than coming from us. We can’t thank you enough readers, for allowing us to serve you with a quality community newspaper.

Call (209) 383-0433
or (209) 358-5311

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