Ridge View Echo Reaches a Milestone
Back in January 2021, a small group of community residents applied for a grant from the New Jersey Civic Information Consortium, a non-profit created by the State of New Jersey to grow access to local news and information. We were a group of local folks, some long-timers and some new to the area. Our quest was to provide accurate and unbiased news on local government, school board and community affairs. We believed that reliable information would result in more community involvement. Our community had been without a dedicated news source for over 20 years.
In May 2021, we were awarded that grant, thank you NJ CIC, and the Ridge View Echo was born. With several volunteers helping, we constructed an online newspaper presence. An all-volunteer Board of Directors was established with Gail Keogh-Dwyer, as treasurer, John Maxman, advertising manager, and me, Paul Avery, as Executive Editor. Long-time journalist Desiree Dunn, who had crucial involvement in preparing our grant application, stepped up to the role of Managing Editor.
We became “Local News by Local Folks.”
In mid-February of 2022, we began publishing bi-weekly and getting the word out as best we could, word-of-mouth, social media, even road signs. Gratifyingly, interest and readership grew rapidly. And so did we as we attracted dedicated writers, digital marketing expertise and, recently an ad sales person.
Which brings us to the milestone.
Our last issue, Issue 27, marks our first full year of on-line publication. We are so pleased (and proud) to have reached this point. It indeed required a lot of work and determination, but, hey, we have one year under our belt, and we have reached over 17,000 users (which represents the number of new people to take a look) and an ever-growing number of subscribers.
In the years to come, we seek more years to come, providing our region reliable, balanced news, while highlighting the businesses, events and the people that make our community such a great place to live. We seek sustainability and will be working to assure a lasting benefit to our readership.
With a glance back, here is a selection of the stories we presented over our first year, exemplifying the foundation we have laid and will be building upon.