Saturday March 2, 2013

There’s a saying in the news business about creating a brand. Well, the Reformer, for more than 100 years, has been doing just that.

On Sunday, the Reformer marks 100 years as a daily newspaper. And since those humble beginnings when, as the daily Reformer’s first editor Howard Rice put it, many local residents believed the staff was "crazy" to believe "Brattleboro would support a daily newspaper," generations of editors, reporters, sales staff and delivery folks have come and gone, leaving their mark on that brand.

"At the outset readers accustomed to getting their local news in weekly doses were a bit skeptical of having to read it every weekday evening," Rice wrote in his personal history, "but with-out too much resistance these habits changed."

The newspaper industry has seen many changes over the past 100 years, from the way newspapers are printed to the technology used to create them. These changes continue to challenge the newsroom, even today with shifts in the way we can provide the news. The Reformer has been through it all.

In 1913, editors wondered how the community would handle the switch from weekly to daily news coverage. Today, we make sure people can enjoy the news online, through social media tools, and even on Smartphones and tablet devices. And that news doesn’t just get offered each morning; news updates come throughout the day and into the night.

But while the way we offer the news may change, the core of what we do remains the same: a love of the community partnered with a thirst for knowledge and the desire to inform.


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So today we’d like to take a moment and thank two groups of people.

First, thanks to the staff, both past and present, that have helped us get to where we are today. This is hardly a one- or two-person operation. Each day, many people contribute to the Reformer’s newspaper, website and various other online offerings enjoyed today. Without this collective effort, we surely would not be here.

And secondly, thanks to the community -- the readers for whom we continue this labor of love. Customers, callers, readers, letter writers Š anyone who has ever taken the time to get news and information from us, to provide us with information to share -- this is YOUR newspaper.

Today the mission of the Reformer remains the same as it was 100 years ago: To provide the community with the news of the day.

We’re proud to have been delivering you the daily news for 100 years. Thanks for letting us continue do so.