Messenger

Rockdale Reporter continues under family leadership

Four generations of family leadership continues under the Cooke family with Ken Esten Cooke and his wife Christine Granados taking over as co-publishers of the Rockdale Reporter.
“I am thrilled at the opportunity to keep the newspaper in the family as it has been family owned and operated for 107 years,” Cooke said.  
Cooke also publishes the Fredericksburg Standard-Radio Post. Granados is editor of Rock & Vine magazine, also published in Fredericksburg, and continues to teach writing courses at the University of Texas - San Antonio. 

TPA honors Nichols for support of transparency

The Texas Press Association named District 3 Sen. Robert Nichols a 2017-18 Champion of Transparency. Shown at the presentation are TPA officials and newspaper publishers (from left) Jennifer Ricks, Lufkin Daily News; Jake Mienk, Jacksonville Progress and Palestine Herald-Press; Lange Svehlak, Athens Daily Review; Donnis Baggett, executive vice president of TPA; Sen. Nichols; Rick Craig, Nacogdoches Daily Sentinel; and TPA Executive Director Mike Hodges. (Henderson News photo by Dan Moore)

The Texas Press Association named state Sen. Robert Nichols, R-Jacksonville, a 2017-18 “Champion of Transparency” in ceremonies at Nichols’ office attended by TPA officials and publishers of newspapers in Nichols’ district.
Nichols is credited with standing up for Texas laws regarding open meetings and public records and the right of citizens and journalists to have access to meetings and records.

Texas Supreme Court denies Fort Bend Herald’s motion for rehearing

The Texas Supreme Court has denied a motion for a rehearing by the Fort Bend Herald in a case the newspaper brought against Fort Bend County in 2014 to recover attorney’s fees over obtaining public information.
The Herald made a routine Public Information Act request for the names of two people who filed a criminal complaint against former Lamar school district contractor Jim Gonzales, but the Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Department refused to provide the information despite well-established legal precedents.

Elswicks assume leadership roles at Light and Champion

CENTER – Veteran East Texas journalist Mike Elswick has been named editor and publisher of The Light and Champion, bringing with him his wife Stephanie as advertising manager. 
Elswick, a graduate of Aransas Pass High School, has worked for newspapers in Texas, Wyoming, Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma.
Mike Elswick worked for the jointly owned Longview News-Journal and Marshall News Messenger for nearly 30 years between 1983 and 2013. 
He served as editor and publisher for the Terrell Tribune from 2013 through 2016. 

Audience Development, Circulation Conference coming to Dallas Aug 8-9

An Inland Press Association conference on circulation management Aug. 8-9 in Dallas will feature new developments in contractor status, along with other topics related to reaching new audiences and developing new revenue.
Texas Press Association and Southern Newspaper Publishers Association are co-sponsors of the event hosted by The Dallas Morning News, which is opening its new state-of-the-art offices to conference participants. 

2019 Midwinter Conference set

The next Midwinter Conference and Trade Show is set for Jan. 24-26, 2019 at the Embassy Suites Denton Convention Center.
More information will be announced soon - TPA members are encouraged to watch for future announcements on the TPA website. Registration forms will be available online soon.
The 2019 event in Denton will be the first since members approved bylaws changes making the midwinter conference the annual meeting of the association and the only annual convention.

Changing of the guard: TPA Gavel passes to Laurie Ezzell Brown

Past presidents passing the TPA gavel to new President Laurie Ezzell Brown during the induction of new officers were (from left) Mary Henkel Judson, 1990-91, Port Aransas South Jetty; Larry Jackson, 1998-99, Wharton Journal Spectator, now retired; Debbie Day, filling in for her late husband Marshall Day, 2006-07, Gatesville Messenger; Chad Ferguson, 2011-23, The Banner Press Newspaper, Columbus; Russel Skiles, 2012-13, Lamesa Press Reporter; Greg Shrader, 2013-2014, Lufkin Daily News, now retired; Randy Mankin, 2014-15, Eldorado Success; Randy Keck, 2016-17, The Community News, Aledo; and Pat Canty, 2017-18, Odessa American.

Laurie Ezzell Brown, editor and publisher of The Canadian Record, was inducted as the 141st president of the Texas Press Association during the closing ceremony of the summer leadership retreat, held at La Torretta Lake Resort in Montgomery. 
As she received the gavel passed to her by past presidents in TPA’s annual tradition, Brown paid tribute to her predecessors. “I am mindful today of the high standards you have set, and grateful for your leadership and wise counsel,” she said.