If you are passionate about local independent news in your region and want to help identify and connect publishers, we want to hear from you!
LION Publishers is looking for up to 25 news leaders affiliated with LION member organizations who are deeply connected to the news ecosystem in their communities to help us build our map of the independent news ecosystem in the U.S. and encourage other publishers to take advantage of industry support.
These community ambassadors will reach out to local independent news organizations in their region as a part of Project Oasis, an initiative to map the growing digital, local, independent media landscape. They’ll also share information about industry support opportunities, including LION’s trainings, programs, resources, and community for independent news entrepreneurs as they build and develop sustainable businesses.
You’d be a great fit as an ambassador if:
- You are affiliated with either a current LION member organization based in the U.S. or an organization that is eligible for LION membership.
- You are connected with the existing independent news ecosystem in your community or you’re highly motivated to deepen your connection.
- You’re available to spend an anticipated 15-20 hours total between August 28, 2023 and November 10, 2023 to collect the required data and collaborate with LION staff.
Community ambassadors will receive a $1,000 honorarium upon completion of project deliverables.
— Samantha Matsumoto, community engagement manager, and the LION Team
Was this email forwarded to you? Sign up here!
11 resources and opportunities for independent publishers
1. Apply for Religion News Service (RNS) and Interfaith America’s 2023-2024 RNS/IA Religion Journalism Fellowship, a program dedicated to developing religion news journalists. (Apply by Aug. 4)
2. Apply for the National Press Foundation’s Statehouse Reporting Fellowship, a four-day, expenses-paid program in Madison, WI, Sept. 18-21. (Apply by Aug. 6)
3. Register for a free webinar from the News Product Alliance on pitching your professional development ideas to your employer. (Aug. 11)
4. Save 35% on Southeast News Sustainability Meetup tickets. This regional event occurs on Oct. 3-4 in Durham, North Carolina, and features the 2023 LION Local Journalism Awards Ceremony. (Early-bird registration ends Aug. 14)
5. Register for a free online panel discussion from Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center geared toward small business owners. Topic: Access to Capital. (Aug. 16)
6. Develop your data mapping skills. Enroll in “Advanced data journalism: Powerful data reporting and mapping tools,” a four-week online course organized by the Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas at the University of Texas at Austin. (Starts on Aug. 21)
7. Apply for USC Annenberg’s Center for Health Journalism’s Impact Fund for Reporting on Health Equity and Health Systems, which supports investigative or explanatory projects on systemic racism in public health, health care policy, and the practice of medicine. (Apply by Aug. 21)
8. Apply for a LION Sustainability Audit. Receive a tailored action plan and $20,000 in direct funding to address your organizational goals. (Apply by Aug. 28)
9. Apply for CUNY’s Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism’s Entrepreneurial Journalism Creators Program, a new online program for independent journalists developing niche news products. (Apply by Sept. 8)
10. Apply for The Lenfest Institute’s Philadelphia Local News Sustainability Initiative, a grant program that provides core operating support and capacity-building funding to news organizations in the Philadelphia region. (Apply by Sept. 15)
11. Read Panorama Global’s playbook if you’re navigating next steps after receiving a large, unrestricted grant.
What we’re reading
A blueprint for evidence-based decision-making. How The Texas Tribune has tapped into product thinking and plans to build a better membership experience. (University of Missouri Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute)
How will our audience react? 101 questions to ask your audience before announcing a new product. (News Product Alliance)
Connection in times of crisis. How Front Porch Forum launched regional disaster response boards to enable neighbors to share mutual aid information more easily. (VTDigger)
Workplace culture –– more than a concept. How to define, measure, improve, and celebrate company culture. (Culture Amp)
LIONs in the news
Small steps lead to big solutions. In 2022, the Community Info Coop joined U.S. Democracy Day, one of the largest collaborative journalism efforts undertaken in the U.S. The goal was to launch a democracy beat at The Objective, a nonprofit watchdog newsroom examining systems of power and inequity in journalism. Together, they collectively fundraised to turn the Coop’s $3,000 investment into $20,000 for The Objective, which now has two part-time staff covering the media democracy beat. We love to see two LION members come together for a common cause!
In other LION member news:
- The Reader and El Perico have made the difficult decision to cease production after 55 years of sharing Omaha’s stories. They’ll publish their last issue this September and thank their committed readers, staff, and supporters.
- Street Light Media Group, the Bucks County company behind LevittownNow.com, has recently entered its tenth year in operation and reported that 82% of adults in the Levittown area check LevittownNow.com regularly. The publication is increasing its local news coverage, remaining sustainable, and planning to grow.
- Mississippi Free Press seeks an experienced Development Director to lead its revenue team.
How to reach us
When you reply to this email, we all receive it and you’ll hear back from one of us. You can also email us directly at [email protected].