In August 2007, Adam Stone found himself yearning for the camaraderie he once felt working as a reporter for a community newspaper. At the same time, he also noticed a need. With the closure of his town’s longtime weekly paper, and several journalism friends in search of a job, Stone decided to launch The Examiner the following month.
Ten years later, it’s safe to say he made the right choice.
“Because we were able to weather some serious storms, including the Great Recession nine years ago, the notion of the company reaching its tenth birthday and beyond did seem like a realistic way to envision its future,” Stone said. “The decade has, of course, been marked by countless challenges and hurdles to clear but navigating those situations is what running a business is all about. I enjoy the chess-like nature of the publishing game.”
Currently, the company freely distributes 25,000 copies of its four weekly Examiner publications in the cities and towns of Putnam and Westchester counties in New York. A special anniversary section was inserted into all four Sept. 12 editions of the Examiner and featured reflective columns from Stone and editor Martin Wilbur, as well as a photo collage of their most memorable front and back pages.
Though Examiner Media maintains a digital presence on social media and a website (theexaminernews.com), the print newspaper continues to connect strongly with its readers. For Stone, who assists with distribution of the paper, the power of print is something he often witnesses firsthand while restocking copies at the local diner every day.
“I’ll see people sipping their coffee, eating their eggs and reading the Examiner, sometimes creating conversations among adjacent restaurant-goers about everything from our latest front-page stories to our blotters, obits and puzzles,” Stone said.
So, it makes perfect sense as to why the company’s philosophy is “Small news is big news.”
“We agreed that in community newspapers, sometimes the best content is the type of small item that one couldn’t imagine being worthy of publication anywhere else,” Stone said. “So for us, even small news items were a big deal, at least for our readership. With that thought in mind, our motto was born.”
While it’s difficult to forecast what the next decade will entail for Examiner Media, Stone said he and his staff will continue doing what they know best—providing local news for communities in need of it.
“So much has radically changed over the past decade, and change is only coming at a quicker and quicker pace,” Stone said. “But one enduring constant will be the endless hunger by people for professionally reported local news and the need for organizations like ours to feed that hunger.”