We are excited to welcome two high-impact newsrooms — Indian Country Today and Epicenter-NYC — to the News Revenue Hub. Both newsrooms do vital, community-focused reporting to serve communities of color and fill critical information gaps.
- Indian Country Today is a 40-year-old independent, non-profit newsroom dedicated to covering the Indigenous world. Led by President and CEO Karen Michel, Ho-Chunk, ICT reports on issues that affect Indigenous communities, from elections to climate change and from treaty rights to COVID-19. In addition to its website, Indian Country Today distributes a weekly newsletter and a half-hour weekday broadcast carried on 97 tribal radio stations and 39 public television stations in the United States, Canada, and Australia.
- Epicenter-NYC is an innovative community journalism initiative based in Jackson Heights, Queens. Started by media veteran Mitra Kalita, Epicenter began as a newsletter to connect Kalita’s neighbors during the pandemic. In addition to original reporting, the Epicenter-NYC team offers readers access to public documents they can use to improve their neighborhoods. Epicenter also runs a podcast and hosts community forums with the goal of rethinking how news organizations collect, share and act on information vital to communities.
Both organizations joined the Hub at our highest level of support with a goal to strengthen and financially sustain their newsrooms. They’ll get a dedicated project manager who will help them set data-driven goals for the next year, using a set of tools, reports, and guidance from the Hub. They’ll also receive hands-on support from our 10-person team of membership and audience development experts, as well as training to deepen their relationships with readers and increase revenue.
ICT came to the Hub at a transformational moment in its 40-year history. Over the next three years, the newsroom plans to add seven new regional bureaus, upgrade its technology, hire additional staff members and create a national internship program for Indigenous journalists. The Hub will help the newsroom launch its membership program, which will help make the expansion possible.
“A well-developed membership program will position us to enhance the quality and range of our reporting, increase our audience, and create job opportunities for Indigenous journalists throughout the country,” said Nikki Huser, business development manager at Indian Country Today.
“News Revenue Hub has a track record of launching successful membership programs throughout the country. We are excited to partner with experts as we build the operational capacity to execute and strategize engagement of our loyal donor community,” she added.
As a startup, Epicenter-NYC will work with the Hub to expand its newly launched membership program and implement best practices for generating reader revenue. Epicenter-NYC and the Hub will prioritize newsletter optimization, data infrastructure, and campaign strategies. The goal is to help readers understand why membership is critical to Epicenter-NYC’s role informing, connecting and empowering their community.
“We first became aware of the Hub after seeing it used by our peers and partners. Having just launched our membership program as a small team, we had many ideas on how to grow but lacked the capacity and tech expertise to quickly execute,” said Daniel Laplaza, Epicenter-NYC’s community manager.
“We felt the Hub could provide the boost we need to get our membership program to the next level,” Laplaza added.
“We are thrilled to have Indian Country Today and Epicenter-NYC join the Hub,” said News Revenue Hub CEO Mary Walter-Brown. “They represent a class of newsrooms that is stepping up to fill critical information needs and intentionally meeting readers where they are. We look forward to helping them strengthen their revenue streams and make strides towards financial sustainability.”
The News Revenue Hub specializes in helping newsrooms build membership programs from scratch and to scale up existing reader revenue efforts. Learn more here.