Editor & Publisher

Heidi Wright

Robin Blinder is E&P’S Editorin-chief. She has been with E&P for four years. She can be reached at robin@editorandpublisher.com

COO, EO Media Group, Salem, OR and Publisher, The Bulletin, Bend, Oregon

First job in news:

I was the controller for The Montana Standard in Butte, Montana, a Lee Enterprises newspaper.

What are some of the most important lessons you have learned while working in news?

Staying connected to the communities we service. Job #1 is to provide credible, relevant content that reflects the communities we serve.

When you reflect on your career to date, what brings you the greatest sense of accomplishment?

It’s not an accomplishment but a realization that many community members care deeply about our industry’s survival and stand ready to help if asked. We saw that when the former owners of The Bulletin went into bankruptcy, and several community leaders saw EO Media as the right company to “ride the horse out of the swamp,” as one investor (the late Bill Smith) put it. In 2019, these investors stepped up with financial support to back our bid in the bankruptcy court. Four years later, we have repaid the loans and have delivered on our commitment to provide the locally-produced content they entrusted us to keep alive.

We also experienced the community’s passion and support in Medford, Oregon, when the Pulitzer Prize-winning Mail Tribune suddenly shutdown earlier this year. Thanks to our owners seeing an opportunity and the company’s ability to pivot quickly, we were able to start up the Rogue Valley Times within a month, attracting top talent and a significant subscriber base out of the gates.

What are your predictions for where news publishing/news media is heading?

I think there is a sustainable business model for news publishers, but it is directly tied to actually staffing our newsrooms. If there is a local newsroom to serve the market, there is a legitimate product to sell to subscribers and a pipeline for attracting the next generation of journalists.

Developing philanthropy and non-traditional B2B revenue streams and how our industry responds to the new world of AI will be increasingly important.

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Editor and Publisher