Alaska Dispatch in the news
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From political corruption to climate change to rural Alaska to the rise of Sarah Palin, Alaska media has struggled to cover stories of importance not only to Alaskans but to the rest of the nation. Alaska Dispatch, Alaska's online-only news site, is devoted to filling this journalism void. Whether reporting on powerful oil companies or on residents who live far from the urban centers where decisions are made, Alaska Dispatch's goal is to take an unflinching look at the state, from its massive riches to its abject poverty, and tell these stories to Alaskans and to the world.
We have been honored by the accolades our reporters, editors and columnists have received, including more than two dozen Alaska Press Club Awards in just two years. In 2011, we received the Alaska Press Club's awards for investigative reporting and public service, as well as the Howard Rock Tom Snapp First Amendment Award for our efforts to cover Alaska's 2010 race for U.S. Senate -- an honor for which we were nominated by our peers in the Alaska Press Club. Also in 2011, we received the Best of the West journalism award for breaking news for our coverage of the August 2010 plane crash that claimed the lives of former U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens and four others.
2012 saw more awards come Alaska Dispatch's way, as Best of the West once again rewarded our coverage with a first-place nod, this time in the category of best general reporting for a story documenting problems surrounding a multimillion-dollar airport project serving the remote Aleutian community of Akutan. In addition to other awards from the Alaska Press Club in 2012, Alaska Dispatch earned the title of best news website, reflecting the evolving design and technology advancements being utilized to provide the best news experience for our readers.
How we got started
Alaska Dispatch was founded by journalist Tony Hopfinger in 2008. In mid-2009, Alice Rogoff, a longtime supporter of journalism and a former chief financial officer of U.S. News and World Report, became the majority owner of Alaska Dispatch Publishing LLC, and the site expanded to employ writers, editors and a full-time sales team.
Making journalism sustainable
At Alaska Dispatch, we believe we are paving the way for the future of online journalism -- locally-produced stories presented on for-profit websites. The owners of Alaska Dispatch believe journalism must -- and ultimately will -- pay for itself. The site is a for-profit enterprise, relying on online advertising and sponsorship. We can accomplish this not only because we are unencumbered by operating a printing press or broadcast signal, but because we aren't owned by shareholders who demand big profits. The future of online journalism is a highly efficient staff producing content 24/7, backed by owners who understand the civic responsibility -- both financial and ethical -- that comes with disseminating the news.
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