Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Back to school for few days

This past weekend our publisher, Rick Bussler, our county writer, Karen Jorgensen and myself, were at the Minnesota Newspaper Association’s annual convention in the Twin Cities.

The convention was the first one I was given the opportunity to attend and it definitely didn’t disappoint.

Aside from having the opportunity to see our newspaper being recognized with seven different awards (see A1 for whole story), we got the chance to go to different classes.

The classes that we got to attend were all aimed at teaching us about different things and hearing different ideas from journalists across the state to help our paper, and in return help our readers have the best content possible in their weekly paper.

Bussler asked me on the last day of the conference if I had gotten at least one idea that I can implement in our news organization to make it better.

I was happy to report to him that not only did I find one idea, during the convention, I found multiple ideas that can be implemented that will enhance our coverage and in return make a even better experience for our loyal readers.

Learning more and “geeking out” about newspapers were the main highlights for me during the convention.

As we begin to implement some of these things, some subtle and some more straightforward, my hope is that our readers will let us know your thoughts.

Another one of the highlights during the convention was getting to hear Gov. Tim Walz speak at the last luncheon of the convention.

I rarely ever had the opportunity to hear a political speech, live without having an assignment to do, and it was definitely refreshing hearing the governor speak positively about journalists.

I think he said it best when he said something to the effect of “It’s sad that in 2019 I get a standing ovation when I say that the press isn’t the enemy of the people.”

That statement couldn’t have been more correct. During the course of a couple of days, my belief that journalists are hard working and fair people was reaffirmed.

The last time I was surrounded by so many journalists at one time was when I was covering national politics in college, and everyone was competing against each other to get the best angle of a story and to get it first.

Last week it was different though, journalists were all on the same team, as corny as that may sound, there with one united purpose of helping to make the free press even stronger.

During the convention, journalists were there to get better and at the same time were there to give their perspectives in hopes of making a fellow newsroom stronger.

It showed how dedicated print journalists are to a free press and one that tells the stories of a local youth baseball game, and the stories about a murder and everything in between.

I feel thankful to have a publisher that is willing to invest in my continuing education by allowing me to attend the conference this past week. I am also thankful for the MNA, which put on a great convention.

I am looking forward to implementing the many ideas I learned during the convention to make our newsroom stronger and to make the experience for all of you readers better as that is ultimately the most important thing.

The 2020 convention can’t come soon enough so I can learn even more.


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Steele County Times & DCI

Steele County Times
411 E. Main St.
P.O. Box 247
Blooming Prairie, MN 55917

Dodge County Independent
121 West Main St.
Kasson, MN 55944

Dodge County Printing
121 West Main St.
Kasson, MN 55944


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