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Bonita Gooch to deliver 19th annual Huck Boyd Lecture in Community Media

Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2019


MANHATTAN — Bonita Gooch, editor and publisher of The Community Voice in Wichita, will deliver the 19th annual Huck Boyd Lecture in Community Media on Thursday, Feb. 14, at Kansas State University.

Her lecture, "The Grind: Using Journalism as a Community Builder," will be at 9:30 a.m. in Forum Hall at the K-State Student Union.

"More than reporting the news, community newspapers can play a role in strengthening the communities they serve," Gooch said.

With its slogan — "A trusted voice from the community's perspective" — she and her team at the biweekly newspaper have spent the last 24 years gaining and using that trust to help educate, connect and build African-American communities across Kansas.

Gooch also will participate in a 10:30 a.m. panel discussion about minority voices in the news. The panel will follow the lecture and is also free and open to the public. Panelists will include Gooch; Clara Reyes and Diana Reyes Raymer, both of the Reyes Media Group, which includes Dos Mundos, LAX 1250-AM, La Grande 1340-AM and ESPN Deportes Kansas City 1480-AM, all in Kansas City; Bryan Richardson, Manhattan Mercury; and Mara Rose Williams, the Kansas City Star. Rafael Garcia, Kansas State University senior in journalism and mass communications, will moderate the panel.

Richard Baker, recently retired associate professor and news director of the K-State Radio Network, and Clara Reyes, who is editor and publisher of Dos Mundos, will be honored as Huck Boyd Community Journalists of the Year at the luncheon following the panel discussion. This award is given by the Huck Boyd Center and the Huck Boyd National Institute for Rural Development.

A Wichita native, Gooch left home after high school and returned 23 years later. Since November 1996, she's worked to grow The Community Voice from a fledgling publication to a force within the state of Kansas. When her family purchased the paper, it was a small monthly publication with limited distribution. Under her leadership, the paper's distribution has grown into one of the state's largest-circulation non-daily newspapers.

Gooch increased the publication's frequency from monthly to biweekly, but is most proud of the reputation the paper has developed across the state for quality and integrity in journalism.

Gooch actively participates in a large number of events across the state. When issues affect the community both directly and indirectly, she can be found attending city, county, school and state governmental meetings. The important issues from these meetings often find their way onto the pages of The Community Voice as news pieces or as the subject of editorials.

Gooch received her bachelor's degree in journalism and a master's in public administration, with an emphasis in urban management, from the University of Kansas.

Gooch is a single mother of a young independent daughter who lives in New York City. In her spare time, she enjoys playing tennis, running, listening to R&B, jazz and classical music, letting loose on a dance floor, gardening, reading a good book, traveling and enjoying the silence.

Gooch's lecture, the panel discussion and the luncheon are sponsored by the Huck Boyd National Center for Community Media in the A.Q. Miller School of Journalism and Mass Communications.

"McDill 'Huck' Boyd was a great believer in preserving small towns and small-town media, and this lecture series in his name helps highlight the importance of community journalism in Kansas and across the nation," said Gloria Freeland, director of the center and assistant professor of journalism and mass communications.

To become a patron of the Huck Boyd Lecture in Community Media series or for information about luncheon tickets, please contact Freeland at gfreela@k-state.edu.


Gloria Freeland


Huck Boyd National Center for Community Media


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Bonita Gooch

Bonita Gooch, editor and publisher of The Community Voice, will present the 19th annual Huck Boyd Lecture in Community Media at 9:30 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 14, in Forum Hall at the K-State Student Union.