I'm saddened to announce that Ben Ilfeld is resigning from the Board of Directors of the Local Independent Online News Publishers, effective today.
Ben was involved in building LION from the earliest of conversations about the need for local indie publishers to band together. He ably contributed to the work of our Steering Committee as we worked through setting up our organization. His thoughtful and enthusiastic approach as the head of the Membership Committee was critical to our reaching the nearly 100 members we have today.
When he agreed to serve on the Board, Ben said he would limit his service to one year, as other work would pull him away and perhaps appear to be a conflict of interest. Unfortunately, that day has come.
I personally consider him a great friend and a member of the LION family, and wish him the best of luck as he pursues his other ventures. He leaves behind big shoes to fill.
– Dylan Smith
Chairman, Local Independent Online News Publishers
Here's Ben's statement:
I am passionate about LION and thankful for each member who took a step towards working together as independent publishers.
But as of today I am no longer an independent local publisher myself. Though I own a controlling stake in The Sacramento Press, I have no day-to-day role there as I have fully transitioned to CEO of AdGlue.
AdGlue is a vendor and I do not feel comfortable continuing as a full member or as a board member. I will remain a supporter and I will help anywhere I can.
I was at the first Steering Committee meeting and I had been agitating for an organization like LION since the first Block by Block summit. And I've fought hard for inclusive membership policies and outreach to broaden LION and strengthen our community. I expect that those values will continue to be tent poles of our organization.
I would also like to thank the Board. Each Director has contributed mightily to the creation of this organization. I have never met or worked with a group of people so clearly dedicated to values that make our communities better. And despite the variety or our business models or backgrounds, we have worked so well together. This is a special group and I hate to step aside.
This is a difficult day for me. I completely believe in LION. I completely believe in local independent publishers. You are all the future. I hope we will all remain close friends and that when I look back I will see this as another transition rather than a separation.
— Ben Ilfeld
The Sacramento Press
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