Renie Scibona - Publisher - Independent Newspapers

<img alt="" title="Scibona.jpg " style="border-width: 0px; width: 120px; height: 131px; float: left;" src="" />PhotoRenie Scibona being introduced by President Aaron McDermid


Not many people get to work for the same company twice but that’s exactly what Renie has done. Her first employment with the Independent lasted 14 years where she gained valuable experience about the newspaper business. Then after a stint with another company she returned to the Independent as its Publisher. Renie has responsibility for the <st1:ST1:ST1:PLACENAME w:st="on">East <st1:ST1:ST1:PLACETYPE w:st="on">Valley operations; that includes Apache Junction/Gold Canyon, <st1:ST1:ST1:CITY w:st="on">Chandler, Gilbert, <st1:ST1:ST1:CITY w:st="on">Mesa and <st1:ST1:ST1:PLACE w:st="on"><st1:ST1:ST1:PLACENAME w:st="on">Queen <st1:ST1:ST1:PLACENAME w:st="on">Creek/San <st1:ST1:ST1:PLACENAME w:st="on">Tan <st1:ST1:ST1:PLACETYPE w:st="on">Valley.


The Apache Junction/Gold Canyon Independent is AJ’s oldest local newspaper and also the oldest member of the AJ Chamber of Commerce. Its long term success is likely due to its focus on the community.


The paper’s local emphasis is the key to its content – if it’s not something that interests our local population the editors will reject it. Readers want to read about what’s going on in their community.  One result is that the paper has an excellent relationship with community organizations such as Rotary and the AJ School District.


One example of how the paper relates to a community will soon happen in the Gilbert edition of the paper. The Home Owners Association for Trilogy will publish their community newsletter in the Independent. The paper benefits by having all the relevant Trilogy news and the HOA benefits from not having to spend precious dollars on printing and mailing costs. A win-win for both parties.


While “happy-happy” public interest stories are the norm, the Independent does not shy away from controversial issues. Its editorial ethic is to stick to the facts and present both sides of any issue. Opinion is left up to the reader.


The paper’s ownership is somewhat unique; a Non Profit Holding Trust that is governed by a board of business men and women. There are no shareholders looking for dividends. As a result the company is able to thrive on profit margins below industry standards. Surpluses are reinvested in the paper’s operations and service.


Many believe the advent of Internet news organizations will cause the demise of printed newspapers. History has shown that will likely not be the case. Radio was supposed to replace newspapers … then television was supposed to do the same. What actually happened was that the market changed. Market share was rearranged and newspapers continued to have a place in the world.


Like the Independent, many newspapers are changing their business model. Beginning in November, on-line and e-mail news stories will become available to Independent readers. What was formerly a weekly news desk will evolve into a daily operation with content being available every day … a real benefit to subscribers.


The Independent is printed by a sister company, Valley Newspapers. Renie boasted about the superb print quality produced. A further testament to its outstanding reputation and high standards is the fact that Valley Newspapers will begin printing the West Coast edition of the Wall Street Journal in October.


Renie gave us few tips when sending newsworthy information to the editor. Always include the “Five W’s” – Who What Where When and Why. And don’t forget to include who you are along with contact information in case the paper needs to clarify anything. Renie agreed with one of our Rotarians who suggested – Don’t include the phase - “I ’m not a crackpot” - in your letter to the editor.

50/50 Drawing
Bob Homann had the right ticket ... but not the Joker. $282 remains unclaimed ... maybe next week.