Letter from the editor: It’s really been a year already?
Nicholas Friedman | Editor-in-Chief
After more than 20 years, I was the first North Texas Daily editor to stay on for a full school year. It was a scary thought at first, but I grew into it, and I think it all worked out. Don’t you?
We told a lot of stories this year, ranging from the tragic to the uplifting. We covered the city and its plans for the future. We covered a gay couple’s quest to adopt a child. We met celebrities, experienced things for the first time and had a blast doing it.
But it wasn’t always easy. With a lot of structural changes, a new website, a digital-first mindset and a ton of staffers, there was a lot to keep together. With the support of some wonderful editors and advisors, we made it through.
So, what does the North Texas Daily mean to me?
Well, it means a lot of things. The Daily was my first foray into newspaper work, really. I was a yearbook kid in high school; so moving to the big leagues in college was a big deal. I was coming off of a pretty terrible injury where I had broken my jaw and left wrist at the same time. So, with my mouth wired shut and painkillers in my belly, I interviewed for the Daily.
I suppose it worked out. My first semester as a staff writer was a rough one, as I started to carve out a little niche for myself here in Denton. I wrote a lot about technology and put together some cool profiles. I also made some great friends too, other writers and photographers, and they helped shape me into the journalist I am today.
After that, I worked a summer as a senior staff writer building a beat and getting to know the ins and outs of production. This led to my promotion to design editor for the fall of 2014. In that role, the seeds were sown for the design the Daily has today. It has a classic feel, but it’s easy to read and easy to jump into. We won some awards, too.
Then onto features editor, where I finally felt what it was like to have a staff. And my underlings were fantastic. By the end of the semester, many of them had become seasoned reporters and writers. Heck, some of them make up the editorial board this year. Of them, I couldn’t be more proud.
And at last, I was named editor-in-chief for the fall 2015 semester. I had been preparing for it, but it’s sort of like going on a first date, there’s no way to predict it. But my first date went smooth, and they decided to bring me back for the spring semester, and my staff came with me. We built upon the platforms we created, including The Dose, a pop culture brainchild I developed that has grown into an award-winning print product. We made our writers stronger and they, in turn, made us stronger. I was given wonderful opportunities at the Denton Record-Chronicle and The Dallas Morning News this year, and I’m grateful for that.
For this year, and my career as a whole, I can’t thank my colleagues enough. To Dalton and Harrison, the paper is in good hands. I can’t wait to see where you go with the groundwork we all placed together, and you know I’ll be following along and trying not to read the comments.
But if there’s one thing I can say about this paper, it’s thank you. Thank you for this year, and the years before. Thank you for helping me to start my career. Thank you for making me a journalist.
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