Most of us will agree it’s never been a more challenging time to be in the media business. We face continued industry-wide headwinds in newspaper circulation and advertising, while adapting our business models in response to changing preferences in a digital age.
Add in newsprint tariffs, threats to legal advertising, the perpetuation of fake news and myriad other issues, and it’s apparent we have a difficult and potentially messy road ahead of us.
As I enter my new term as your CNPA president, I am ready to confront such challenges head on and join you in charting out a sustainable course for our profession.
What’s encouraging to me is the strong network of industry leaders and fellow board members at CNPA who are committed to volunteering time in their busy schedules to plan and advocate for a successful future for the Fourth Estate. It is a shared mission that matters not just to our careers, but the future of our country and democracy.
I am also inspired and motivated by the many ways our respective media organizations serve our communities. In small and oftentimes very significant ways, we impact people’s lives. We have a responsibility as leaders to work collaboratively toward this shared purpose, and in doing so, be effective stewards of our publications.
To accomplish this, we have to ask tough questions about what is essential to our organizations and what is not. Are there gaps between opportunities and our ability to capitalize on them? How can we invest in essential areas that will drive progressive change to our industry and substitute cost-cutting conversations with strategies for growth?
CNPA has gone to great lengths to address such questions and increase the value of your membership. An enormous amount of credit goes to CNPA Past-President Bill Johnson, who helped break down CNPA operational barriers, allowing us to direct our energies toward fulfilling the Association’s mission. That mission is to serve the common interests of its members and news media, and foster the highest ideals, ethics and traditions of journalism.
Within the next year we will focus our efforts on CNPA’s communication effectiveness, its Advertising Services performance, and a renewal of its commitment to fulfilling its role as the leading legislative lobbyists for California media.
We are also re-imagining our summits and board meetings to make sure we align them with our members’ availability while capitalizing on our responsibility to meet and interact with California leaders.
As evidenced by the winning entries for the 2017 California Journalism Awards, there is no shortage of quality journalism produced by our members. Our newsrooms continue to hold the powerful accountable, while helping inform, entertain and inspire readers. Candidly, we must continue to innovate to ensure we keep these talented journalists working on beats that matter to our communities.
Successful transformation will come by working together in coordinated ways. I look forward to partnering with you through CNPA. It’s time to get our hands dirty and clear obstacles that stand in the way of creating a successful future.
CNPA President Ron Hasse is publisher and president of Southern California News Group.