Publisher’s Note: Farewell, Jackson

By on August 1, 2018

Welcome to the last issue of Planet Jackson Hole

JACKSON HOLE, WY – A few years back our little publishing company in Salt Lake City purchased another little publishing company in Jackson Hole. Despite years of railing against chain ownership and the value of independent-minded newspapers, we found ourselves to suddenly be a chain enterprise, and our vision of owning and operating newspapers in the region was off to the races. But newspapers are both hard to buy and to sell and we ended up as a chain of two. Alas, what was once our off-to-the races verve became less and less pronounced.

During our third year publishing Planet Jackson Hole, our editor, Robyn Vincent, announced she was leaving to build her education and journalism chops. It was only then I came to fully understand the many stories about the Jackson housing and employment crisis that Robyn had written and edited in the prior 130 or so issues under her helm.

It took more than four months to find a new editor, Angelica Leicht, who quickly discovered there was basically nowhere to live in Jackson. She worked from Driggs, Idaho. In time she would leave too, and it was during a fingers-crossed call to Robyn earlier this year that she agreed to come back to work in the community she loved with her name atop the newspaper she loved. She did.

By that time, the staff of Planet Jackson Hole was nearly fully comprised of new parts. Only Distribution Manager Bill Fogarty remained from the earlier era. Our rock solid cowboy, Vaughn Robison, who had taken the production helm just months before Robyn left, became the de facto shepherd of Planet Jackson Hole operation. Two rookies, Dave Alper and Chase Corona, newbies to Jackson, rebuilt the sales department. Robyn was the soul, the heart.

Every successful editor I’ve ever known was defined by a strong work ethic. If those former editors comprised a rock band, Robyn would play lead guitar, not rhythm. She will be a success no matter where she goes. If it had not been for her, we may not have come to Jackson at all. If not for her, we would not have remained. And because of her, because she has decided to leave the paper, we are now, nearly four years on, leaving Jackson knowing that while we were not the perfect stewards for Planet Jackson Hole, we believed in the paper’s mission. We are incredibly proud of the stories and work we published under her helm. Jackson Hole is a better place thanks to Robyn Vincent.

Yes, that is our farewell. Jackson, we hardly knew ye. This issue you hold is the final printed edition of Planet Jackson Hole that we will publish. We are talking to various persons interested in keeping this vital voice alive and well. We hope that happens, for among the greatest surprises of all these past years is that Jackson is the benefactor to many wildly talented people. They deserve to have their voices heard and their stories told. And what great stories Jackson provides. Big city, no. Real city, yes.

We leave sad, but not broken-hearted. And we leave hoping Jackson rewards the likes of Robyn Vincent, a true Teton treasure.

About John Saltas

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