Editorial: Our Mission
Four years ago, at this time we were busily envisioning and planning for the first issue of the Greenwich Sentinel, aiming to launch Memorial Day Weekend. It was a fun and nerve-racking time as we attempted to reimagine what a community newspaper could be and how it could positively affect our community.
We were creating a new model in a very old profession (newspapering) at a time when many believed the future was digital and that people no longer wanted a printed paper. Four years later, the demand for the printed paper and digital platforms is strong, both among our community’s readers and advertisers.
With growth and maturity comes a constant need to reexamine our mission. We were founded on the belief that our community needs a local paper that celebrates all that is good in our community, reports the news fairly and accurately and is a vehicle for all to share their views.
We also knew we wanted different voices in the newspaper, so we encouraged guest columnists to sign-up to share their opinions on a myriad of topics. It has been terrific to hear their voices as well as the community’s response to them.
Over the years, we have spanned many topics, from the state budget and the how it affects Greenwich, to the goings-on at the Board of Education, to lighter, humorous stories on summering in Canada. We strive to be informative, educational and share our point of view. We encourage, and indeed welcome, feedback, comments and letters to the editor. Our paper, as does our community, works best when it shares information from different perspectives.
There is a quote we like from Robert Kennedy: “No one needs to tell me about the importance of the free press in a democratic society or about the essential role a newspaper can play in its community.” We believe that newspapers, both dailies and weeklies, play an essential role in their communities. No one media outlet can cover everything that happens in Greenwich and delivering the news in whatever way the consumer wants to receive it strengthens our community overall.
In order to look forward, we must look back at our first four years. We are proud of the product we have developed, but prouder still that our community has said over and over again that the Greenwich Sentinel is something they want to read every week. Our printed editions are available in many locations throughout town are always snatched up by the end of the weekend. Our digital platforms continue to pull in more and more traffic, making them the most followed in town. We could not have done that with the support of our community.
So, what does our future hold? Well, our mission remains unchanged: inform and educate but also celebrate what is good about our community and bring attention to what can be improved.
At a time when the national news programs remind us more of talk show host Dr. Phil than Walter Cronkite, we need to safeguard that the news, editorials and columns the Greenwich Sentinel puts out every week are of a caliber that raises the level of debate not further erodes it. There is no room to build someone up by tearing someone else down. Our community is too well educated, too informed and, frankly, too busy to stand for that kind of behavior.
What we promise is to offer the best product we can each week. We will comment on what is happening in Hartford because it has a direct effect on what happens in our community. We will comment on what happens in our community, as well. After all, it is because of our love for our community that we launched the Greenwich Sentinel four years ago.
What do you think?
Let us know, Greenwich.