Next month we will publish the 100th edition of this magazine. That commemorates more than eight years of doing something for this community that had never been done before.
It celebrates our effort to deliver on our promise to our readers and advertisers that we would achieve a milestone of providing news and information about the place where we live that no other publication or electronic media was delivering.
Unlike most other cities in the region, Arlington didn’t have its own monthly magazine. So, in 2013 former city council member and community activist Judy Rupay took the initiative to fill that empty space.
She asked me to join her in that effort, and I eagerly agreed. We published our first issue in the fall of that year featuring Nolan Ryan on the cover in front of The Ballpark in Arlington – one of the most significant achievements in the city’s history. It was well received throughout the cities we serve – a confirmation that Judy’s notion of the need was spot on.
I had long been frustrated that there was no effective way to keep the people of our hometown informed about the events, activities, people, places, and things happening in our daily lives.
In reality, the traditional news outlets focus on what they believed their audiences wanted to see – controversies, violations of the law, politics and such, but only occasionally reporting on much of anything positive that would suggest the development of a higher quality of life for our citizens.
I am not only a long-time witness of this experience but was a member of the local newspaper team for three years after stepping down from my mayoral service. The old saying of “if it bleeds, it leads” was and is a principal guideline throughout the world of journalism.
That’s never going to change, and I respect the authority of the traditional media to decide what they will report.
But the Arlington Today team felt it should not be the only way to apprise and empower people throughout the community with information that would make them better citizens. Knowledge is the force behind a system of democracy where “We the People” oversee building better lives.
With the help of our experienced and professional editor, Yale Youngblood, columnists, and other content contributors, we’ve focused every single month on achieving that result. Here’s some brief examples:
We tell you about what the community service organizations are doing to address and serve the needs of people, ranging from those providing fundamental support for those in need, to other non-profits delivering service and opportunities to citizens that the local government is not doing and is not purposed to do.
Every issue contains reports and stories of the work of the business community investing in the cities where they are located and providing job and career opportunities throughout.
Every issue delivers news and information about the city’s privilege of hosting the Tier One University of Texas at Arlington preparing graduates for success in almost every field of work. That’s a companion to our focus on the successes of the Independent School Districts and the community’s private schools.
The city’s largest tourism and visitor economy has risen to national prominence and provided unlimited opportunity for the rapidly expanding entertainment district that drives revenues into city treasuries that support ever-expanding services to all citizens. We keep you informed about all of that.
Downtown Arlington has emerged as a premier success story in the revitalization of the city’s central business district. Almost every issue features the latest developments.
Evidence of all of this can be seen by just thumbing through our “Scene” pages and enjoying the pictures of people engaged in the life of our community in an endless variety of ways.
Finally, I must mention how we are able to do what we do – it’s our faithful advertisers that make it possible. Without strong participation by them, we don’t exist. So, please – read the ads and consider doing business with those who support Arlington Today.
Stay tuned. There are another 100 issues in our plans for the years ahead, and we look forward to that challenge every day.