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ONG Column Winner


Connie Burcham

Watonga Republican, January 2020 
A bubble off plumb



ONG Editorial Winner


Mike McCormick

Tri-County Herald, January 2020 
Adhering to the Open Meeting Act



  • "United with You" house ad campaign in time of global health crisis

    A new series of six house ads focuses on how newspapers are connected to their communities, perhaps more than ever, as we respond to this pandemic and global healthcare crisis together.

    Each ad highlights an essential theme:
      •  Together we can build a stronger community
      •  Together we celebrate our heroes
      •  Together we protect our community
      •  Together we count our blessings
      •  Together we help one another
      •  Together we look to the future

    »  View and download the "United with You" campaign

  • Essential Business Info - Draft Letter for Identification of employees

    FROM: Mark Thomas, Executive Vice President, Oklahoma Press Association, 405-659-3966 mobile
    Thursday, March 24, 2020

    Today Governor Kevin Stitt issued an executive order about essential and non-essential businesses.   Currently the order is limited to 19 counties.  In the press conference the Governor referenced federal guidelines that are already in place.  Those federal guidelines are very lengthy and found in the Critical Infrastructure Security Act (CISA).   Fortunately, communications workers, critical infrastructure workers, and media services are included in the CISA.

    To assist your newspaper employees and independent contractors we have prepared a draft letter (see download) for your voluntary use declaring your people as critical infrastructure and communications workers at your newspaper, including newsgathering, production and delivery workers. 

    »  Read full message from Mark Thomas

    »  Download Sample Letter for Essential Employees

    »  Download Critical Structure Memo

  • Legislative Changes to Open Meeting Act during COVID-19 State of Emergency

    DT: Wednesday, March 18, 2020 1:30 p.m.
    TO: All OPA Member Publishers and Editors
    FR: Mark Thomas, Executive Vice President 405-659-3966 mobile


    On Tuesday, March 17, the Oklahoma State Legislature made some emergency changes to the Open Meetings Act. The bill included the “emergency clause” and went into effect immediately upon signature of the Governor this morning. Senate Bill 661 is designed to be a temporary measure that will cease to be in effect when the Governor lifts the COVID-19 state of emergency OR on November 15, 2020 – whichever occurs first.

    » Read FAQ #1 from Attorney General Mike Hunter

    » Read FAQ #2 from Attorney General Mike Hunter  (added March 26, 2020)

    » Read entire SB 661

  • Oklahoma Press Staff Contact Information

    During this time the Oklahoma Press Staff may work from home and/or have limited hours at the office. We are forwarding these direct lines to our cell phones and checking email. Please contact us directly when needed. 

    Cindy Shea, Advertising Director(405)
    Landon Cobb, Sales Director(405)
    Samantha Smith, Tearsheets Coordinator(405)

    Mark Thomas, Executive Director(405)
    Jeannie Freeman, Accounting Manager(405)
    Scott Wilkerson, Accounts Receivable, book orders, free press cards(405)

    Jennifer Gilliland, Manager(405)
    Wilma Melot, Computer Consultant(405)

    Lisa Sutliff, Member Services Director(405)
    Christine Frank, Membership & Meetings Director(405)

    Keith Burgin, Manager(405)
    Samantha Smith, Assistant(405)
  • Kevin Slimp: Planning for the Worst

    Here are Kevin's initial thoughts on how to prepare for the possibility that your staff could be required to work from home at some point in the near future.

    » Read Kevin's column from this month's issue of The Oklahoma Publisher

    Kevin is also holding two webinars on March 19 to discuss issues related to COVID-19. Cost is $19 each.

    »  Preparing your Staff for the possibility of working at home amidst COVID-19:
    Presented by Kevin Slimp, Thursday, March 19 at 11 a.m. CST.  Click for Details

    »  Helping Newspaper Advertisers Understand Marking Amidst COVID-19:
    Presented by Ryan Dohrn, Thursday, March 19 at 1 p.m. CST.  Click for Details

  • Journalism Hall of Fame Gala Postponed

    Due to concerns about the coronavirus, the Oklahoma Journalism Hall of Fame’s 50th Anniversary Gala has been POSTPONED until 6 p.m. Oct. 9 at the Oklahoma History Center. Anyone who has already sent in a reservation or check for the gala does not need to re-submit requests or payments. Reservations will be held for Oct. 9. Refunds are also available upon request. Contact: Hall of Fame Director Joe Hight at (405) 974-5924 or

    » Read more about this year's gala and hall of fame inductees

  • Crystal Childers promoted at The Duncan Banner

    Crystal Childers, who joined The Duncan Banner in 2013, was promoted to General Manager this month. She will continue her responsibilities as advertising director as well.
    Jeff Funk, group publisher for newspaper's parent company, CNHI, said Childers has the leadership skills to enhance The Banner's service to the community and expand the paper's print and online audience.
    In addition to the daily newspaper, The Banner provides news online at its website and through email blasts, social media and Duncan Magazine.

  • David Seeley named Editor at Poteau Daily News

    A longtime sports editor has returned to the Poteau Daily News to serve as its news editor. David Seeley previously served as the Daily News' sports editor from 2010 to June 2019. He took a brief hiatus to work at the Heavener Ledger last year. Returning to The Daily News enables Seeley to remain involved in the Poteau community that's been his home for almost a decade. 

  • Services for Ron Henderson

    Ron Henderson, longtime publisher of The County Democrat in Shawnee, died Friday, March 6, 2020. Services are scheduled at 2:00 p.m. Wednesday, March 11, at the Liberty Baptist Church, 711 E. Federal St., Shawnee, Okla.
    Henderson was born Dec. 2, 1942, in Shawnee. He graduated from Shawnee High School in 1960 and later attended Okmulgee Tech and Oklahoma Baptist University.
    He  was owner of Demco Printing in Shawnee, a family business that he joined in 1961.
    For the past seven years he produced and maintained the Shawnee Public Schools "Keep Howlin" newsletter.
    He is survived by his wife, Mary, of the home; daughters Renee Wortham and husband Lance of Shawnee, and Brooke Oliver and husband Mike of Oklahoma City; and three grandchildren.

  • Services for Joe McBride, Jr.

    Services for Joe W. McBride Jr., publisher emeritus of The Anadarko News, will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 29, at the First United Methodist Church in Anadarko.
    McBride died Feb. 25, 2020, at his home. He was 90.
    He was born Nov. 12, 1929, in Oklahoma City.
    In 1937, the family moved to Anadarko when McBride Sr. purchased The Anadarko Daily News.
    McBride Jr. attended Anadarko High School for one year before transferring to the Oklahoma Military Academy in Claremore. He graduated from the University of Oklahoma where he majored in journalism.
    McBride was called to active duty in August 1951, serving in Germany.
    In August 1957, he was named general manager of The Anadarko Daily News. Following the death of his father in 1972, he was named publisher.
    It was in Anadarko that he met his wife, Carolyn. They were married on July 20, 1957.
    In addition to serving as publisher of The Anadarko Daily News, McBride was also a member of the Rotary Club and the First Methodist Church of Anadarko. He served as president of the Oklahoma Press Association in 1987, was inducted into the Oklahoma Journalism Hall of Fame in 1989, and received the OPA Milt Phillips Award in 1994.
    He was preceded in death by his daughter, Paula McBride Savage, on Oct. 12, 2019.
    He is survived by his wife, Carolyn Nell (Meyers) McBride; daughters Dana K. McBride of Austin, JoNell McBride-Thomas and Carla McBride Alexander of Anadarko; two grandsons; and one granddaughter.

  • Woody Guthrie NIE Feature Available

    February is the 80th anniversary of Woody Guthrie writing "This Land is Your Land." Former newspaper publishers John and Faith Wylie are happy to provide this week's Newspapers-in-Education feature of "For the Kid in You" to Oklahoma newspapers at no charge to celebrate Guthrie's important song. 

    » Download your size

  • February 2020 issue of Oklahoma Publisher available

    The February issue of The Oklahoma Publisher was mailed yesterday. If you can't wait to read it, it's now available online. This month features the announcement of Oklahoma as one of the five sites of the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press's Local Legal Initiative. The Oklahoma Journalism Hall of Fame will induct 10 journalists, 10 posthumous and two Lifetime Achievement Award winners on April 24. Read more about this year's inductees and plan to attend this gala event. Also, read what the five recipients of the OPA-OSU Print Endowment Scholarship said about what it means to receive this award. There is lots of other information in this issue including  newspaper sales, retirements, a fundraiser for the State Capital Publishing building in Guthrie, plus much more.
    >> Download the February issue

  • Reid sells Cushing Citizen to Meisner

    David Reid has sold the Cushing Citizen to the paper's editor, J.D. Meisner.
    Meisner has been in the newspaper business since 1991 and in Oklahoma since 2006. He previously worked at the Tulsa Business Journal, Lincoln County News and Bristow News.
    This sale writes the end of Reid’s story of nearly 40 years spent publishing newspapers in Oklahoma.
    “In ways, [wife] Myra and I feel a bit of a bittersweet emotion leaving the newspaper business. At the same time, we’re real excited that J.D. joined our company about a year ago as managing editor and we anticipate, with optimism, that he will make positive changes and breathe a breath of new life into the newspaper office and the community. It’s a good change,” Reid said.

  • Did we receive your contest entries?

    » CHECK THIS LIST to confirm your mailed issues arrived at the OPA office.  The list is updated daily. Entries should be postmarked by Monday, Feb. 3.

  • Induction gala, book, documentary to highlight Oklahoma Journalism Hall of Fame’s 50th anniversary

    Ten journalists, two Lifetime Achievement Award winners, and 10 posthumous inductees will be honored during the special 50th anniversary gala and banquet of the Oklahoma Journalism Hall of Fame. The gala will be at Friday, April 24, at the Oklahoma History Center.

    The hall of fame inductees are:

    • Clytie Bunyan, director of Business & Lifestyles at The Oklahoman
    • Al Eschbach, longtime reporter, sports director and talk radio host on WWLS
    • Rusty Ferguson, publisher of The Cleveland American, The Hominy News-Progress, and owner of the Pawnee Chief
    • Lori Fullbright, longtime reporter for KOTV/Tulsa News on 6
    • Rochelle Hines, 22-year reporter for The Associated Press
    • Michael McNutt, reporter and editor for more than 30 years at The Oklahoman
    • Michael Sims, executive director at ABC News and general manager of the Network News Service
    • Tony Stizza, photojournalist for more than 25 years at KTVY and KFOR
    • Scott Thompson, longtime news anchor at KOTV/Tulsa; and 
    • Yvette Walker, assistant dean for student affairs at OU’s Gaylord College.

    » More information about this year's inductees and to order tickets

  • State news orgs to receive legal support

    Oklahoma has been selected by the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press to receive pro bono legal support to assist local news organizations in pursuing public records and access to public meetings and in defending against legal actions.

    The Reporters Committee announced Tuesday that it had chosen Oklahoma, Colorado, Oregon, Pennsylvania and Tennessee as the initial sites of its Local Legal Initiative, which is being funded primarily through a $10 million investment by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.

    The Reporters Committee, based in Washington, D.C., will hire an attorney in each state to work with participating news organizations to bolster their efforts to obtain public records, gain access to hearings and meetings, and defend against legal threats and lawsuits. Each lawyer will also offer pre-publication reviews of content, which is common in journalism for assessing legal exposure, as well as other services.

    “The Local legal Initiative is revolutionary because it will help restore the rights of citizens who want access to records kept by their government, and provide the financial backing to challenge bureaucracy and violations of Oklahoma’s transparency laws and principles,” said Mark Thomas, executive vice president of the Oklahoma Press Association. 

    » Read More

  • January issue of The Oklahoma Publisher in the mail

    The January issue of The Oklahoma Publisher will be put in the mail today. This issue focuses on the February 3 deadline for the OPA Better Newspaper Contest and other award nominations. OPA President Ray Dyer offers a guest column that you can use in your own newspaper written by his sister, Erin Thompson. Two OPA member newspapers have new owners, plus much more.

    >> Download the January issue

  • Inspired Media acquires Garvin County News Star

    Jeff and Nanette Shultz, former owners of the Garvin County News Star, are pleased to announce the sale of the News Star to Inspired Media, LLC.
    Pauls Valley residents, Chris and Suzanne Mackey, own the media company, which took over operations of the News Star on January 2, 2020.
    Jeff Shultz will remain on staff as the News Star’s managing editor.
    Suzanne holds a journalism degree and will be working with Jeff to provide quality content for the paper. Chris has a bachelor’s degree in business and will serve as publisher and business operations manager for the paper.

  • 2020 Press Cards Now Available

    This year is almost over so it's time to request your OPA press cards for 2020!

    OPA offers two types of press cards for business member newspapers. Both are perfect for reporters, photographers and any other staff members or stringers at your newspaper.

    1) High quality, professional photo ID Press Cards are $7 each. The hard plastic badges – usable for a calendar year – feature your mugshot, along with your newspaper’s name and phone number. A clip at the top of the card makes it easy to attach to a lanyard, clothing or camera bag. The back of the card has the OPA contact information.
    » Review how to order & download an order form for your photo ID press cards.

    2) Standard cardstock, non-photo press cards are FREE. There are places on the back of the card to write the individual's name and newspaper.
    » Email to request the free standard press cards for your office or order a few with your photo ID cards. 

    ** PRESS bumper stickers are also available and do not expire. They can be used on vehicles, office doors or windows, etc. These are free, and please request them when ordering your press cards.

  • December Publisher available to download

    Merry Christmas to all!

    Download the December issue here.

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Contact Information

3601 N. Lincoln Blvd.
Oklahoma City, OK 73105

(405) 499-0020
(888) 815-2672

Toll-Free in OK