COURIER announces first-ever fundraising campaign
by Peter Weinberger | firstname.lastname@example.org
As I hope many of you have seen in my past columns, your community newspaper is now a nonprofit. After 18 months of effort, the IRS granted us nonprofit status in 2021, and today I’m pleased to announce we are kicking off our first campaign drive to raise needed funds to keep providing you with the coverage you expect from us.
The Claremont COURIER has been a staple of this community since 1908, a 113-year legacy. The COURIER is and remains a critical asset to the city of Claremont, playing a significant role in contributing to the greater good. We expect this change to a nonprofit ensures a bright future for our community journalism, both online and in print.
Why did we move to nonprofit? Like many local news outlets throughout the country, I’ve watched over the past five years how our revenue from advertising has decreased, while increasing a strong subscriber base and readership. I want to thank all our loyal advertisers and subscribers who continue to support the COURIER each year. We wouldn’t still be here without you. But to ensure we continue publishing in the future, we now, while continuing to partner with community groups and businesses, have more options in our toolbox to raise money, including tax deductible financial support from donors and institutions.
The COURIER has been in my family since 1955 when my parents Martin and Janis, in their mid-twenties, purchased it from Stan Larson. I took over once my parents were unable to continue operating the day-to-day needs about 12 years ago. My wife Betsy and our son Matt, a 3rd generation Weinberger, now assist part time at the paper. We have come full circle from our earlier days.
So now, the COURIER is no longer owned by the Weinberger family, and I believe my father and mother would be pleased with this move. This change is a gift to Claremont to ensure the COURIER’s long-term public support role. It is now yours. It’s the community’s news outlet, and we greatly appreciate your support to preserve this trusted news institution. We have a new board of directors to guide us into the future.
We have created this three-year fundraising campaign to offset the continuous cost increases impacting newsprint, printing, employee salaries and benefits, technology, the development of digital products, postage, distribution, even rent. We are hoping to raise $500,000 over three years. Thank you to all the donors who generously have already given us money toward this goal. To reach the goal we’ll also apply for government, foundation and institution grants.
I know I don’t have to tell you how important a trusted news outlet is to our democracy. Like our roads, our libraries, our local schools and hospitals, newsrooms are now a civic asset, and we are now finding new ways to support the news you need.
Starting on page 12, you will see three pages of information about the campaign, including meeting our initial founding members and the COURIER staff. A Q and A hopefully will answer your questions on what to expect and how to help. And if you have questions, please contact Betsy or myself at the COURIER at (909) 621-4761.
So please consider donating — any amount matters. Thank you in advance for your consideration. Your new nonprofit COURIER is owned and operated for and by the public; that’s you, for your benefit.
Please go online and donate (upper left hand corner on the website) or visit us at our Village Venture booth this weekend.