We are sad to announce that longtime Publisher and Editor Holly Martin has accepted a position with the American Angus Association. However, sad as we are, we are also happy for her and her family and proud that a leading association that fights for cattlemen will benefit from Holly’s expertise and passion. With her help we are ready for a new chapter in our history, and we wish her all the best with hers, never forgetting her contributions. Part of that contribution was putting a great team together.

With Dave Bergmeier, Jennifer M. Latzke, Kylene Scott, Lacey Newlin, Shauna Rumbaugh and Jennifer Theurer we have nearly 100 years of experience and many writing awards under our belt. In addition we have an award-winning design team of Luke Waldron, Diana Derstein and Heather Noll who make editorial’s work shine. We have an unmatched pride for what we do and for the community of farmers and ranchers that we serve. And even at the age of 70, we began as High Plains Journal in 1949, it is still just the beginning of our story.

We are proud to announce that Zac Stuckey, our director of sales, has been selected to be our associate publisher. Bergmeier has been named editor and Latzke has accepted additional duties as an associate editor. Additionally, Newlin of Cherokee, Oklahoma, is now a full-time member of our team. She has served as a contributing writer the past year. 

I will fill the role of publisher. As such, it seems a fitting time to formally introduce myself. I come from a family of publishers. My dad and grandfather both carried that title. I’ll never forget as a kid I spent summers and weekends organizing archives and hand delivering books for my dad. After college, I learned how to best serve readers and advertisers, while writing the occasional article. That lasted for over 10 years. In 2014, I followed my dad’s footsteps and became publisher of “The Waterways Journal,” a weekly publication for businesses operating on and along our nation’s waterways. It has been my honor to serve mariners and logistics professionals and in doing so I was introduced to one of the principal beneficiaries to barge transportation, the ag industry.

When the opportunity presented itself to buy HPJ in 2018, I jumped. The chance to serve farmers and ranchers of the Plains seemed too good to be true. To do so with a brand as historic as High Plains Journal was unbelievable. A farmer and friend from Canton, Missouri, made the claim that HPJ was the Bible for farmers and ranchers. Maybe it was just a coincidence, but “The Waterways Journal” is often called the same. When I met the staff, I was absolutely sold. Everything felt right and lined up as I could only imagine in years prior. 

No, I don’t own a farm or raise cattle—I know, I know, I’m working on it—nor do I know how to drive a towboat or build a barge. Instead, what you have in me is an experienced publisher and media partner who believes in what we do and will always lend an ear. Couple that with the experience of a great team, and you have a solid and dependable partner for years to come.

I sincerely look forward to meeting you and serving the HPJ community. Congrats and best wishes to Holly. I know our paths will cross again.

Nelson Spencer Jr. can be reached at nspencer@hpj.com.

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