Voice of the People
Cox Enterprises was founded in Dayton, Ohio, in 1898 by former schoolteacher and news reporter James M. Cox, whose ambition was to own a newspaper. At the age of 28, he borrowed $26,000 from friends and family and purchased the Dayton Evening News (now the Dayton Daily News).
The paper had been struggling financially for years. The bookkeeper warned Gov. Cox that even if they had no news and only advertisements, the paper would lose $500 a week. But Gov. Cox felt certain he could turn the paper around. He decided that expansion was a key ingredient to the paper’s success and added a women’s society editor.
He also increased the Associated Press service to include national, international and sports news. He established an advertising rate card so that all advertisers knew they were being charged fairly — a first of its kind.
He was respectful of people at every level, and micromanagement was not his style. He respected others’ talents and allowed them to do their jobs without excessive interference. He also believed the paper was the people’s paper. It was the responsibility of the newspaper to retain or acquire that which was good for the community.
The newspaper continues to pursue that mission. Dayton Daily News is publishing special content to commemorate its 120-year anniversary this week. Check it out now by clicking here.
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