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Post Independent hires new publisher

Post Independent/Kelley Cox Colorado Mountain News Media general manager Steve Pope welcomes Andrea Porter as the new publisher at the Post Independent.
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Mike Bennett has lost a great deal of elevation since he began working for Colorado Mountain News Media at the Summit Daily News in Frisco nearly a decade ago. To the joy of his wife, who likes to garden, Bennett lost 3,400 feet when he became publisher of the Glenwood Springs Post Independent in 2004. On Monday, he lost another 1,100 feet or so when he climbed another rung of the CMNM ladder and took his new post as publisher of the Grand Junction Free Press. At about 4,600 feet, Grand Junction has a much longer growing season, by the way. CMNM, the parent of the Post Independent and the Free Press, announced yesterday that Vail Daily associate publisher Andrea Porter will immediately take the publishing reins of the Post Independent. She is also the publisher of the Valley Journal in Carbondale and the Rifle Citizen Telegram both weekly publications.CMNM Director Steve Pope said Porter’s new post will allow the Post Independent to continue the progress it made under Bennett and editor Dale Shrull. The paper’s transition from one publisher to the next will happen without missing a beat, he said.”Andrea has been part of the community for so long, it will be perceived as a coming-home rather than a change,” Pope said.Porter was in charge of the advertising department at the Glenwood Independent before and for a short while after its 2000 merger with the old Glenwood Post. Porter, a native of Rhinelander, Wisc., moved to Colorado in 1997, and Glenwood Springs was her first stop. As publisher of the Post Independent, the Valley Journal and the Rifle Citizen Telegram, Porter said her vision for the newspapers is to be very involved in the community and the papers to grow to be the best they can.”I have a lot of ties already here,” she said, adding that she was involved in the Glenwood Chamber Resort Association and Rotary Club before she moved to Vail. “I want to definitely create those connections again and build new relationships. The newspaper needs to have a tight connection with the community.”Porter, 35, is married to Glenwood native Christopher Porter, and has three children, Tucker, 3, Tessa, 2, and Brody, 6 months. Christopher is the camp director for a Anderson Camps.A former alpine ski team coach at the Colorado Rocky Mountain School in Carbondale, Andrea Porter raced competitively in slalom, giant slalom and downhill skiing while in high school and college. After her previous move to Glenwood, she coached for the Buddy Warner Program at Sunlight Mountain Resort.Porter’s accomplishments don’t stop on the ski slopes. While at the Vail Daily, she helped the newspaper win Swift Newspapers’ growth award in 2003 and 2004. A former publisher of both the Leadville Chronicle and Eagle Valley Enterprise, Porter said she’s been through six newspaper acquisitions while in the news business. “I’m an agent of change,” she said. Bennett, meanwhile, will take on the task of making the Free Press as competitive as it can be. “We’ve made a lot of progress and built brand awareness,” Pope said of the Free Press. Bennett, he said, will go in and help to solidify that brand awareness and grow the three-year-old paper into CMNM’s most competitive market. “It’s taking a newspaper – basically an infant – and helping it grow,” Bennett said. He said he’d planned to retire in the area when he moved here, but he decided to take on a new challenge and go where his company needed him most.”I’m very sad,” he said about leaving the Roaring Fork Valley. “They felt that I could take it (the Free Press) to the next level both with content and advertising sales.”Gypsum-based CMNM is owned by Reno, Nev.-based Swift Newspapers, Inc. and operates five daily newspapers in Frisco, Vail, Glenwood, Aspen and Grand Junction. The company also owns weekly papers in Aspen, Gypsum, Rifle, Carbondale, Snowmass Village, Vail and Leadville. Contact Post Independent Publisher Andrea Porter at aporter@postindependent.com or (970) 945-8515 ext. 400.


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