Aiken County has relied on the Aiken Standard, a South Carolina-owned newspaper in Aiken, S.C., for nearly 155 years and The Star of North Augusta for 65 years not only as watchdogs but also as the center of community dialogue.
To deal with the challenges local papers face with the changing media landscape the Community Foundation for the Central Savannah River Area has created a topic of interest tax-deductible fund supporting public service and investigative journalism in Aiken County for the Aiken Standard and The Star.
This provides us a pathway for building philanthropy into our newsroom business model.
The ultimate goal is to fund 25% of of the newsroom budget with contributions from the community. Public service reporting and investigative journalism is some of the most important work local journalism does.
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“I think, by 2018, there’s an opportunity for New Orleans to be viewed around the country, around the world, as a hub of entrepreneurship for the South,” says Tim Williamson, the CEO and cofounder of incubator The Idea Village, referring to the year the city will celebrate its 300th anniversary.