A mother’s touch …

Bob Bonnar


f you’re a NEWC Now subscriber you’ve already heard that the News Letter Journal won first place for General Excellence in our small weekly division in the National Newspaper Association’s annual Better Newspaper Contest.

It has now been nearly
a week since we were notified by the association that we were being honored as the nation’s best, and I’m still incredibly proud of the News Letter Journal staff.

The amount of effort and commitment it takes to produce a quality newspaper over the course of a whole year is really pretty staggering, and I do hope you will take the time to recognize and thank the people who produce your newspaper each and every week. You will recognize them from the really big ad announcing all of our national awards on page 8. (I told you I was incredibly proud of the NLJ and I meant it!)

There is one person who isn’t pictured in the ad, however, and whose name never appears on any awards — or even in the pages of the News Letter Journal.


But without her contributions — each and every week — the News Letter Journal would be unrecognizable to most of our readers, and we certainly wouldn’t be celebrating a national championship — or any other meaningful awards for that matter.

Penny Bonnar (my mother) is the former News Letter Journal editor who first hired me. She moved to Wisconsin about a quarter century ago, but has been serving as the NLJ’s copy editor since retiring from her full-time gig about five years ago.

She is able to work remotely, and is responsible every week for making sure the information presented in all of our stories is clear, concise, well organized, verified, and attributed. In addition, she catches a slew of spelling and punctuation errors and ensures that all of our stories follow a standard format (or style).

If you’re like me, everything I just said about my mom’s job at the NLJ either sounded really confusing or incredibly boring — or both — but her touch on the stories we produce for you ensures that they are being delivered in a credible and professional manner. Without her tireless editing the News Letter Journal would lack the polish of professional journalism, and our ability to serve the community as a trusted source of information would be diminished significantly over time.

There is nothing flashy about what Mom does, and certainly no awards for it, but it is a job that readers benefit the most from because she basically holds us accountable as writers for the information we present and makes sure we present it in an easy to comprehend manner.

She separates us — as community journalists — from the beasts of the modern media landscape, and there are a lot of them!

So as I offer up a final thank you to the staff for their excellence, to my partner Robb Hicks for his continued investment in this business, and to this community for allowing us to serve you and tell your story, I hope you’ll all join me in adding one more note of gratitude to my mom.

We’re really blessed to have her keeping those beasts at bay.


News Letter Journal

News Letter Journal
14 W. Main St.
P.O. Box 40
Newcastle, WY 82701
Ph: (307) 746-2777
Fax: (307) 746-2660

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