Bridge Magazine is hiring for a new Michigan Environment Reporter

grand haven lighthouse beach

John Bebow is President and CEO of The Center for Michigan

Michigan is blessed with thousands of miles of Great Lakes shoreline and recreational rivers, vast tracts of public forest, and thriving tourism, agriculture, forestry, fisheries, oil and gas, and other natural resource-based industries that pump billions of dollars into the state economy.

And now, thanks to financial support from numerous visionary philanthropies, Bridge Magazine readers will get in-depth news, analysis, and watchdog reporting on all of that from a new, full-time environmental and Pure Michigan business reporter.

Today, we launch a talent search for a dynamic journalist to lead a new Bridge Magazine Michigan Environment Report which will debut this fall. Here’s the job posting.

This latest Bridge Magazine sponsorship is made possible by generous grant support from the Joyce Foundation, Bosch Community Fund, Americana Foundation, Glassen Memorial Foundation, and Porter Family Foundation. And it comes at very important time.

From invasive species in the Great Lakes, to local land use and zoning disputes, to changing habitat and agricultural practices potentially related to global warming, Michigan is a bounty of environmental, recreation, and natural resources business news. And you, our readers, are increasingly asking Bridge to keep you informed on these issues. Because in-depth natural resources reporting is getting harder and harder to find.

Way too long ago, I started my career as a cub reporter at the Traverse City Record-Eagle. I was fortunate enough to cover the environmental beat in one of Michigan’s most beautiful regions. Competition was tough. I had experienced peers - full-time natural resources beat reporters - consistently producing great journalism all over the state. Almost all those full-time beat reporters are gone – hundreds of years of institutional knowledge have walked out Michigan newsrooms through buyouts, retirements, and layoffs. Nationwide, newspaper employment has dropped by 60 percent since 2000, according to Census figures.

“Liberty of the people cannot be preserved without a general knowledge among the people,” John Adams said 250 years ago. We’re on the case here on the whole range of Pure Michigan issues. Give us a minute to get going, weigh in with your curiosities and story tips, and enjoy this latest expansion of Bridge Magazine’s nonprofit, public service journalism when we launch this fall.

Thanks for reading.

Questions? Comments? Let me know at jbebow@thecenterformichigan.net.

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June Thaden
Thu, 08/17/2017 - 3:27pm

Thanks to everyone for supporting the decision for Bridge to cover the environment more thoroughly. Michigan is surrounded by the Great Lakes, and as citizens we are responsible for the quality of that 21% of the earth's surface fresh water. Water is life. An often repeated statement that is so fundamentality true that we must always work to protect our water. And that includes decommissioning the Enbridge pair of 64 year old pipelines carrying oil along the bottom of the Straits of Mackinac. Check out www.oilandwaterdontmix.org for more info.