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Letter from the Publisher

Dear Readers,
Change is one thing we can count on; it is actually job security for those of us at the Ojai Valley News and Ojai Valley Visitors Guide. Our 127-year-old community newspaper has its first female publisher, and our mission remains the same: to diligently report the local news fairly and accurately, and to share the conversation of our town. Our newspaper is Ojai’s vital resource for reliable local information, moderated public discourse and events, keeping us connected through the stories from our neighborhoods.
“Knowledge is power,” and newspapers with integrity give power to the people through trusted information. The advantages we gain from a free press cannot be taken for granted. These days, community newspapers enjoy 73 percent public trust as opposed to 55 percent for their national counterparts.
It may or may not “take a village to raise a child,” (I know I did depend on THIS village to raise my three), but I am certain it takes a community to create a healthy, vibrant newspaper and magazine. These publications must hold a mirror to our truths - our successes, our failings, our culture and controversy, our water and our land. We, the team at the Ojai Valley News, want to hear from you. Let us know what is happening and how you feel about it. Get your neighbors to subscribe. Participating in our community and contributing to our publications are sure to improve them both.
I have a passion for truth, and a commitment to uncover the facts and share the conversation of our community, even when those facts and that conversation get controversial. We want to be the relevant, dynamic newspaper that brings all local concerns and issues to our community. We need to be proud of our newspaper, magazine and website, and I have a creative, sustainable vision for the publications and the website; transition is under way. You will get to know our news editor and the rest of the team committed to sharing the news, the voices, the stories, the brand that is Ojai. I invite you to invest along with us in this 127-year journal. We are living and recording our history, one week at a time.
I want to thank my publisher mentors, Bret Bradigan, David Comden, Claud Mann, Jane Handel, and Krista Harris for sharing their expertise; my mother who taught me to write; my children who remind me to stay present; my husband, Bob, who grounds me; the talent of our devoted news team, and the people of the Ojai Valley - all of whom inspire me to do more and to do it better every day.
Please reach out to us to share your ideas and letters as we begin a new chapter at the Ojai Valley Newspaper and Ojai Valley Visitors Guide (Winter) together.
Your neighbor in the newspaper business,
Laura Rearwin Ward
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