News essential for community 

By Judith Roberts 

I see it a lot – the disbelief, the shaking of the head, the comment of, “Wow, you must be really busy,” which is generally followed by, “How are you doing it all?” 

What people mean is this – my husband and I working to publish the Lincoln Parish Journal five days a week with a handful of writers and one ad rep while also being active members of the community and serving our occupations well. And, to be honest, I don’t do it all. Dirty dishes are likely in my sink as I write this, my hair is tossed up most days in a quick ponytail, and lunch will likely be a protein bar. “Doing it all” has never been my motto – but “doing it well” is. 

I think the question really is, “Why are you doing it?”  

Why did I do this? Why did I convince my husband, who works in Monroe but also serves as the voice of the Ruston High football team and the Lady Techsters basketball team, that we needed to take this project on, to build the Lincoln Parish Journal and make it the best media outlet it could be? 

We did it for you. 

Long before I was approached about the Journal, I read the Journal daily.  It was where I received my news and found out what was happening in the community. I told my husband about this new media outlet, where the news was free to read. It was a fascinating concept – running only online and receiving revenue wholly from ads. I watched this business over the spring and summer of last year, and when I signed papers in August 2021, I had a game plan. 

I wanted to bring the news to you. 

In this digital age, most of my college students find out what is happening in the world around them through social media. Most of my friends found out what was happening in the parish through coworkers. We needed a one-stop place where people could find news quickly, efficiently – and, yes, even for free. 

I was educated by several of Lincoln Parish’s own journalistic titans – Wiley Hilburn naturally is an icon of writing at this point, but also by Reggie Owens and Eddie Blick and Ron White and Sallie Rose Hollis. My husband went through their vigorous education process for journalists, too – we both have worked in the media in various capacities for nearly two decades now. I teach students how to write in AP Style, how to interview, and how to research. 

Our staff, which is composed of a lot of volunteers, also has credentials that I would rival next to anyone. T. Scott Boatright probably has a room in his house dedicated to all of the awards he has won. Wes Harris is a knockout writer who has written for more publications than I can remember because he is that valuable. Sallie Rose Hollis, Dusty McGehee and Teddy Allen are just a few of our versatile, talented columnists. We also have other writers who are hustling and bustling to get you the news you need Monday through Friday. 

It is hard work, but it’s not tiring work. It energizes me. It makes me excited every morning to tell stories of this community because it is the people who make Lincoln Parish such a wonderful place to live and cover. 

We will keep telling your stories. We will keep you informed. Because we’re here for you. 

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