The Signal Tribune newspaper

Thoughts from the Publisher | July 6, 2018

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A couple of weeks ago, I was contacted by California News Publishers Association. Their publisher’s director of Affiliate Relations, Joe Wirt, asked if I would be willing to be featured as their next profile in their publication, the California Publisher quarterly. I told him I would be happy to, although I didn’t realize the number of in-depth questions I would need to answer.

A few days later Joe sent me the list for the Q&A. He encouraged me to take my time and to ponder before answering. Ponder I did. Holy cow! By the time I finished the article, it was longer than some of the essays I wrote in grad school. I believe it was four pages in all.

With all the hard work I put into the thing, I figured I would use it for double duty and share some of it with our readers. Here is part one of a three-parter. I’ll share part two with you folks next week.

Publisher Profile
Name: Neena R. Strichart
Born (where and when): Long Beach, CA …May of 1955
First job: Babysitting neighbor kids
Current job: Publisher, editor-in-chief
Family: Husband Steve, Mother Marjorie– 98 years of age!
Education: B.A. in psychology/minor in marketing (CSULB), grad work in negotiation, conflict resolution, peacekeeping (CSUDH)
Community involvement and diversions:
Member of Signal Hill Chamber of Commerce
40-plus-year member of Susan B. Anthony Chapter/ Daughters of the American Revolution
Member of Signal Hill Historical Society
Member of Friends of Long Beach Animals
Member of Blue Suede Shoes/Elvis Presley Fan Club
Member of Fast Friends (Greyhound dog rescue organization)

For the geographically challenged, where is Signal Hill?
The city of Signal Hill is located smack-dab in the center of Long Beach. It is 2.2 square miles and has a population of 11,500. The city is proud to be home to many small, independent places of businesses as well as larger companies like Best Buy, Costco, two Home Depot stores, its own auto mall, two Starbucks, Mother’s Market and many other large retail establishments.

What role has your newspaper played in the development of your community?
We have always kept our readers apprised of local news in both Long Beach and Signal Hill. In many cases, we have been trusted with exclusive stories, and we love being the paper to break news to the community. However, on that note, many times important news happens a day or two after we have gone to print. When that happens, we relish in the extra time it allows us to dig deeper into that particular event and offer our readers a more in-depth report.

How’d you get to where you are now?
Living in the same neighborhood for most of my life has helped me focus on local goings-on. My longtime sales career has been invaluable to me. I have done both inside and outside sales over the last 40 years of my life, including selling Indian jewelry (my own retail store: Neena’s Indian Jewelry), fur coats (Buffum’s Department Store), in-home closet organization (California Closet) and advertising sales (The Signal and Press-Telegram). Focusing my formal education on the combination of psychology and marketing was great preparation for newspaper advertising. I started my career in the newspaper industry in 1994 as an advertising sales consultant for The Signal and Uptown Signal newspapers. I worked side by side with the publisher, Thomas Allen, for four years. When Allen closed the paper due to financial difficulties, I went to work for The Press-Telegram as an account executive selling advertising to businesses in Signal Hill and Bixby Knolls. I remained there just over a year. In mid 1999 my husband and I formed Posh Enterprises in order to assist local businesses with their marketing efforts. After spending time with my clients, it became clear to me that the community was at a loss with the demise of The Signal newspaper. In February 2000 The Signal was reborn, and I became the publisher. A year later, we acquired the Signal Hill Star Tribune, merged the two newspapers, and became the Signal Tribune.

Describe a typical day for you at the job.
It can’t be done; I have no typical day. My morning may start with a meeting with a local politician, clergy member or advertiser, or I may sit in my car a block from the office going through emails on my phone before I walk into the office. One thing is for sure… the first thing I do when I walk in the door is to feed my fish.

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Serving Bixby Knolls, California Heights, Los Cerritos, Wrigley and Signal Hill
Thoughts from the Publisher | July 6, 2018