Two years and 104 newspaper issues ago, I started my tenure as Editor/Publisher of the True Dakotan, embarking on a new adventure as a community newspaperwoman, not knowing quite what to expect.
After making the purchase from the Wenzel family, Duke, Karen and Penny moved on from working at the paper. But, thankfully, Craig stayed on staff. As a new editor and fairly new resident of Jerauld County (I’m going on seven years in Wessington Springs now), I felt much solace from the fact that Craig would be at the paper to help me with not only the day-to-day but to also help with the nuances that only a native of the area would inherently know.
Every week is definitely different in the newspaper business, and I relied on Craig many times over the past 104 issues for advice on how to handle uncomfortable, sometimes sensitive situations that occasionally bubble to the surface – even in our quaint community.
We’ve had more laughs than disagreements and lots of wonderful conversations about everything ranging from politics to music and food to parenting and grandparenting. I’m going to miss working with Craig every week, and even more, I’m going to miss those conversations with a colleague who has ended up becoming a good friend.
As Craig works on his last issue as a member of the True Dakotan staff, I feel very grateful for all I’ve learned from him over the past two years.
I’ve said it many times since purchasing the paper, but I continue to feel incredibly honored that the Wenzel family entrusted me to carry out the True Dakotan legacy they created in 1975. I’ve been fortunate to have Craig stay on staff the past two years so I had the opportunity to tap into and hopefully, pick up 40 years of knowledge from a seasoned newspaperman.
I’m excited for Craig to begin to enjoy his retirement on March 1 after all those years in journalism – and I’m equally excited to introduce new True Dakotan graphic designer/ad manager, Cam Fagerhaug of Wessington Springs, who officially begins this month. A full column dedicated to the newest member of our team will appear in next week’s issue. I hope you stop by the office and help us welcome her aboard!
I hope Craig enjoys a well-deserved retirement full of camping trips with Penny, time with his grandkids and all of the outdoorsy things he enjoys throughout the seasons. I also hope he sticks to his promise and comes in for coffee and a few laughs on Tuesday mornings! My biggest hope, however, is that he still regularly contributes to the paper and knows I welcome his editorial and photographic contributions for as long as he’s willing to share them.
Thank you for your support and readership over the past two years. As Craig retires, we are beginning another new chapter at the True Dakotan and I look forward to enjoying the journey with all of you for many years to come.