It’s easy to come back to Chilton County

Published 8:46 pm Wednesday, April 1, 2009

It didn’t take long for me to be welcomed back into the Chilton County community.

Just an hour into my return to The Clanton Advertiser, someone I had worked with closely on many stories years ago gave me a call and said they were glad I had returned to The Advertiser.

It is a rare occasion in a person’s career where you get to work in a community so close-knit and warm as Clanton. But, in my years in the newspaper business, I have been lucky to have worked in such places as Alexander City, Selma, Enterprise, and now – for the second time – Clanton.

In each case, the connection between the community and its newspaper has been phenomenally tight. In each case, the community takes ownership of the paper and contributes to the daily product by calling with news, offering friendly advice or even – in rare occasions – complaining.

It is these calls, tips and advice that make newspapers, such as The Clanton Advertiser, a crucial part of a community.

During my first trip to Clanton, Mike Kelley taught me that a newspaper’s success is not measured in awards but rather the impact it has on a community and the service it provides.

In its history, The Clanton Advertiser has provided a wonderful service of providing community news and features and highlighting the tremendous quality of life that comes with calling Chilton County home.

There is little doubt in the coming days I will make mistakes, misspell a name, forget an important date, etc. But, it is my hope that you – our readers – will lend me a helping hand.

It’s nice to be back, and it’s nice to be welcomed back so warmly.