On behalf of all of us at The Lawrence Times, I’m excited to announce our news team, our equity beat and more as we charge into 2022.
First, a quick look back. Let’s face it, we’re humans — and the past few months have been difficult. As individuals, our tiny staff has had a lot of challenging family stuff going on. We appreciate the patience, support and understanding this community has continued to show as we’re working through some new personal trials.
But there are a few accomplishments I’d like to highlight as we move on from 2021.
In addition to the news coverage we’ve provided over the past 10 months, we have:
• Kept a dashboard of local COVID-19 statistics to display critical information on one page;
• Given community members a place to publish obituaries for their loved ones free of charge;
• Created a robust and meticulously organized calendar of events;
• Offered affordable job listings that prioritize the workers;
• Helped Lawrence voters choose their next city and school board leaders,
and so much more. It has truly been an honor to do this work.
Most importantly, we’ve kept access to all our work open for everyone, regardless of their ability to pay.
We are constantly working to do more and do better. We’ve gotten some experience in these brand new roles and given ourselves a little breathing room, evaluated our priorities and thought about what we want and need to be for this community.
Firstly, we’re delighted to welcome aboard three passionate and curious new reporters: Maya Hodison, Emma Bascom and Andrea Albright. Our news team also includes Tricia Masenthin and me.
We always want to focus on people before institutions and everything else. The typical structure of a small local publication does not jibe with our values or how we want to allocate our resources, so we’re trying something different.
Going forward, Tricia and Maya will be working together on a new equity beat. That will touch on virtually every aspect of life in Lawrence and Douglas County, and much of their work will focus on disproportionate impacts that local issues have on marginalized people. They will fight against injustice and inequality. They will also highlight some of the fantastic community members and groups that make Lawrence such a special place.
Emma will cover local education and take on some investigative projects. Andrea will cover crime, courts and all things community-related. We’re all going to work collaboratively as much as we can, and constantly evaluate how we can best serve the community’s news needs — including holding those in power accountable, and digging deeper to shine light on important truths.
We also now have a bio page for our news team. Click here to get to know the people behind the bylines. You’ll also see some others writing for us from time to time, including but certainly not limited to the talented Jordan Winter and founding Times reporter Conner Mitchell. We’re excited to work with more members of this community in other ways, as well.
We have no paywall. That’s absolutely central to our mission. But if we want to continue growing and expanding into the news publication this community deserves and needs us to be, we truly need your support now more than ever.
Please consider a paid subscription to the Times if you are able to help us stay afloat, and please encourage your family, friends and neighbors to do the same.
We’ve kept our overhead expenditures low, so the vast majority of the money we bring in is going directly to the reporters, photographers, advertising staff and others who keep the Times alive and thriving — directly to the workers, who are members of our community.
Thank you to all who have supported us in any way thus far. There truly are no words to express how much it means to us. We look forward to serving this community for years to come.
— Mackenzie Clark
Reporter/founder, The Lawrence Times