The Signal’s mission – and where we go from here

Writing in the first person is hard, especially as a journalist who favors straight reporting and tries to remove my opinion and myself from the story.

But sometimes, the first person is necessary. This is one of those times.

See, my family and I are moving to Lincoln, Nebraska. My wife, a therapist, accepted a job offer there that is clearly a step forward for her career – and a considerable step up in salary. On top of that, it’s much closer to her family – and not much farther away from mine than Spencer.

We couldn’t say no.

Though that means we will soon be moving to Lincoln – her sooner than me – I want to be very clear:

The Spencer Signal is not going anywhere. I will still build this free, community news resource into what I have always envisioned it becoming.

To do that, I have brought on a business partner, Kevin Brown. Kevin is currently the executive director at Grand Avenue Community Outreach. He’s also very active in other organizations, including the Spencer Chamber of Commerce, Spencer YP, Jaycees, Rotary and more.

Kevin will be handling primarily tasks that fall within business and marketing operations. Once I’m down in Nebraska, Kevin will pick up some interviewing and photography duties, but I will still handle much of the writing and editorial duties for spencersignal.com. Some of the folks I continually pester will continue to be pestered – but over the phone.

Spencer Signal’s mission

With Kevin’s help, the Spencer Signal will continue to build upon its original mission of publishing free, community-focused news that celebrates and challenges Spencer.

I started the Signal with that vision in May 2018. Since then, the website has grown a readership of thousands each month and has quickly amassed a Facebook following of over 1,550 people. Our email newsletter now has nearly 500 subscribers.

That’s why I am committed to continuing this website’s work. Those readers and followers appreciate the Signal and continue to support it. I know this because I have heard it in person from many people. I always enjoy when someone learns that I’m “Tim Weideman with the Spencer Signal.” Except, it’s more often, “Oh, you’re the Spencer Signal!”

Yes, I am the Spencer Signal (costume is in the mail but has been delayed by this weather we’re having).

Well, now Kevin and I are the Spencer Signal.

I am so, so grateful to this community for its support.

The vision

Together, we want to create a community news resource – not just a website – that fosters and encourages residents to engage and be involved in this community.

Already, the majority of the Signal’s readers are engaged in the community and want to be informed. By providing quality content for free, I have also built a strong segment of readers who are actively seeking to become more informed – and hopefully engaged – with the community.

Kevin and I believe that what the Signal is building is a valuable resource to the community. Our vision promotes civic engagement – which is what every healthy community of any size should strive for.

Support the Signal

If you are on board with this vision, then I’m asking you to consider supporting the Signal for just $5 per month or $50 per year.

With that, you will get access to our Spencer Signal Supporters Facebook group, behind-the-scenes updates on what the Signal’s working on (such as the new City Council Vote Tracker) and much, much more in the very near future, including members-only meetups with Spencer newsmakers and idea-generators.

More importantly, as a supporter, you will be helping the Signal further its mission and vision of creating a news resource for an active and engaged community.

If you are a business, then we have even more options for how you can show us your support – and promote your business, as well. Please email Kevin for more information.

Where we go from here

Expect regular publishing to pick up again here right away. I’ve spent this quiet period working out the details of how the Spencer Signal moves forward. You know, the boring stuff – business model, business plan, finding a partner (check) – that sort of stuff.

We have many exciting announcements that we will be unveiling in the future; we’ve already shared with our supporters some of those announcements.

Until then, thank you for reading spencersignal.com.

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