Welcome to nsbnews.net, your newest forum for news in Southeast Volusia. This 24-hour news service is the first of a two-step process in providing comprehensive journalism for the residents and merchants of greater New Smyrna Beach. In the coming weeks, we will be developing a weekly tabloid newspaper, NSB News. People have often asked me why I don't just start up my own newspaper, considering my years of experience. Now that I have, some are asking if it will work out in a weakened economy.
My answer: The opportunity to succeed is great. I love community journalism. When Noah and his sons built the ark, they were ridiculed, but endured. My foundation is built on youthful curiosity of why things happen: Watergate, Vietnam. Being among the last of the Baby Boomers, the evolution of news has changed in delivery, but not pitch. Good journalism will always prevail. Readers still want the who, what, where, when, why and how. At 46, I'm in a crossroads of my life where I have chosen to build on what I know and explore what I don't. That's why I decided to go into business for myself. It's scary and exhilarating at the same time. What we are doing here is journalism in its purest sense: Find the news and report it. It seems everyone is doing it these days: From Yahoo news to bloggers. Being a journalist is hard work. But so is everything else in life worth achieving. What I've learned over the years is not only to expect the unexpected, but how to deal with it. If there's one community I know well, it's Volusia County. I worked hard for eight years for the Daytona Beach News-Journal as a reporter and briefly as an editor for Hometown News in South Daytona and at The Observer of New Smyrna Beach as its editor when it was a daily. When the The Observer was converted to a weekly last summer and I was out of a job, I felt cheated. I worked seven days a week, taking only that July 4th off. The owners didn't care, firing most of the staff and eventually the publisher. I took a job in Palatka as a reporter but the pay was abysmal so I left after three months. Besides my love of journalism, I do not want to be away from my son, who is 14. I was away for weeks at a time when I worked as a city editor for the Taunton Daily Gazette in Taunton, Mass., after I left Daytona, I literally commuted by airplane for 16 months. I have earned my wings as a journalist and feel the time is right to grow in my career and enjoy the blessings of raising my son here in the Sunshine State. Those journalism wings came by way of state and national newspaper awards in Florida, Massachusetts and New York, following a bachelor's degree with high honors from Central Connecticut State University: Taunton (Mass.) Daily Gazette * 3-day series with entire newsroom, "Safety in our schools." 1st place in enterprise reporting/public service, 2006 New England Press Association. * 3-day investigative series "Pipeline Hell" with reporter on shady developer. The reporter won first place in "environmental reporting" in 2005 New England Press Association. The reporter and the city editor shared 3rd place in "investigative journalism" in 2005 Suburban Newspapers of America. Daytona Beach News-Journal * Society of Professional Journalists, Florida Chapter, 2004, 2nd place/large newspapers, Investigative Reporting, "Silent Cries" (3-day series on child homicides). * Society of Newspaper Editors, 2004, honorable mention, Investigative Division "Silent Cries."Society of Professional Journalists, Florida Chapter, 2004, breaking news, honorable mention/large newspapers, "Community mourns death of longtime area educator." * Society of Professional Journalists, Florida Chapter, 2003, 1st place/large newspapers, Front Page Sports Reporting "Lawsuit monopoly justifies splitting up NASCAR." * Society of Professional Journalists, Florida Chapter, 2003, 2nd place/large newspapers, breaking news "The execution of Aileen Wuornos." * Florida Press Club, 2003, 2nd place, excellence in general news writing, "Property takeover may change boardwalk," "Unusual cases re-ignite legal arguments on Miranda rights," and "Word on the street: Few police." * Florida Society of Newspaper Editors, 2003, 3rd place, sports, "Lawsuit: monopoly justifies splitting up NASCAR." * Society of Professional Journalists, Florida Chapter, 2002, 3rd place/large newspapers, breaking news, "Brothers on trial." * Florida Press Club, 2002, 3rd place, excellence in general news writing, "Spring Break: Collision Course," "Lawsuit: Monopoly justifies splitting up NASCAR," and "Behavior nets police chief two-week unpaid suspension." * Society of Professional Journalists, Florida Chapter, 1998, 2nd place/large newspapers, breaking news "Little boy: He shot and killed my friend." * Society of Professional Journalists, Florida Chapter, 2004, honorable mention/large newspapers, James K. Batten Award for public service project: "Spring Hill." Rockland Journal News/Gannett Suburban Newspapers, Nyack, N.Y. * New York State Associated Press, 1992, Spot News (honorable mention), "Two charged in gas station slaying." So can we make this work? I say "yes!" The time is ripe for Southeast Volusia to have a dependable daily source of news. And ultimately, it's the readers and merchants who count. Just because this isn't a multi-million product doesn't mean failure. Look at the Daytona Beach News-Journal, for example. It puts out a local section for Southeast Volusia called the Daily Journal, yet it only publishes three times a week. I've assembled a staff of community volunteers led by longtime resident Peter Mallory, who all share one common goal: Good community journalism. We're very excited in our mission: To provide quality local journalism that informs and is worth reading.