Sunday, May 29 , 2016, 11:29 am | Overcast 61º




Posted on 02.08.2014 8:05 p.m.

LION Publishers Hires First Executive Director as Online News Pioneers Expand

Source: LION Publishers

LION Publishers is proud to announce the hiring of an experienced media professional, Beth Lawton, as the nonprofit organization’s executive director.

Beth Lawton
Beth Lawton

Lawton will tackle the group’s efforts to better connect the members of Local Independent Online News Publishers, and to foster the growth of indie news sites across the country.

“We’re very pleased to have Beth Lawton join us,” said Dylan Smith, chairman of LION’s Board of Directors and editor and publisher of TucsonSentinel.com. “Her energy and experience will be a huge asset as LION grows our organizational capacity.”

Lawton has experience in multimedia reporting and editing as well as media association leadership.

“The advances in mobile journalism and consumer technology, with the increasing focus on local, relevant and useful online information, make this a great time for journalism entrepreneurs,” she said. “I’m excited about expanding LION Publishers’ reach and influence as more people jump into publishing community news.”

Bill Macfadyen, publisher of Noozhawk, a founding member of LION Publishers, said Lawton’s hiring is an important milestone for the 2-year-old organization.

“It’s a sign that we’re maturing,” he said. “Our publishers are beginning to focus on long-range sustainability issues and initiatives, and not mere survival. It’s an exciting validation of how far we’ve come.”

Lawton brings a wide range of expertise to the post. She was the digital media manager for the Newspaper Association of American, the founding online editor of MKEonline.com (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel), a reporter and editor for V.I. Source in the U.S. Virgin Islands, an online producer for the Lawrence (Kan.) Journal-World and KUsports.com, and was recently a regional editor for Patch.com in northern Virginia.

Working with the all-volunteer Board of Directors and LION’s membership, Lawton will create a resource for publishers establishing new news sites, organize a mentorship program for new publishers, and assist in organizing the LION Summit.

“Starting up your own venture takes courage and dedication,” Lawton said. “I wanted to work with LION Publishers because I believe in the mission of providing local news entrepreneurs with the information and resources they need to succeed in serving their communities through journalism.”

“LION continues to grow as the businesses of our individual members grow,” said Howard Owens, LION’s Board Treasurer and the founder of TheBatavian.com in Batavia, N.Y. “Our ability and need to call on somebody of Beth’s qualifications is a strong indication that we’re all heading in the right direction.”

In addition to her duties for LION Publishers, Lawton is the founder of Canoe Media Services, a consulting firm in Alexandria, Va. She is a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University (2003, MSJ in online media), and Washington University in St. Louis (2001, BA).

LION Publishers is the only nationwide group representing the publishers and editors of local independent online news websites, who are successfully creating the future of reporting: locally owned and operated news outlets that directly serve their communities.

LION Publishers are online news leaders who are innovating in business, technology, communication and storytelling while honoring the rich heritage of local journalism.

The 120 members of LION include the publishers of both for- and nonprofit news sites across the United States, ranging from rural towns and urban neighborhoods to regional news sites.

LION offers members platforms for peer-to-peer networking, preferred rates from insurance brokers and other vendors, mentoring by leaders in the field, and online clinics on techniques for business and editorial success. LION is planning a repeat of its successful national conference focused on local online news innovation and excellence to be held at Chicago’s Columbia College in October 2014.

Click here for more information on LION Publishers.




Reader Comments

Noozhawk's intent is not to limit the discussion of our stories but to elevate it. Comments should be relevant and must be free of profanity and abusive language and attacks.

By posting on Noozhawk, you:

» Agree to be respectful. Noozhawk encourages intelligent and impassioned discussion and debate, but now has a zero-tolerance policy for those who cannot express their opinions in a civil manner.

» Agree not to use Noozhawk’s forums for personal attacks. This includes any sort of personal attack — including, but not limited to, the people in our stories, the journalists who create these stories, fellow readers who comment on our stories, or anyone else in our community.

» Agree not to post on Noozhawk any comments that can be construed as libelous, defamatory, obscene, profane, vulgar, harmful, threatening, tortious, harassing, abusive, hateful, sexist, racially or ethnically objectionable, or that are invasive of another’s privacy.

» Agree not to post in a manner than emulates, purports or pretends to be someone else. Under no circumstances are readers posting to Noozhawk to knowingly use the name or identity of another person, whether that is another reader on this site, a public figure, celebrity, elected official or fictitious character. This also means readers will not knowingly give out any personal information of other members of these forums.

» Agree not to solicit others. You agree you will not use Noozhawk’s forums to solicit and/or advertise for personal blogs and websites, without Noozhawk’s express written approval.

Noozhawk’s management and editors, in our sole discretion, retain the right to remove individual posts or to revoke the access privileges of anyone who we believe has violated any of these terms or any other term of this agreement; however, we are under no obligation to do so.


Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through PayPal below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments.

Thank you for your vital support.

 

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.