Every story has a beginning, middle and end. Although Insider Louisville has had a great run with the help of key investors as a startup media outlet and then as a nonprofit news organization with foundation and individual donors, plus hundreds of sustaining members, the cost of operating has been too great to overcome.
It is a sad day for the Insider Louisville team as well as its dedicated board to report that the nonprofit’s last day of publication is Aug. 7, 2019.
Since 2010, Insider Louisville has become an integral daily must-read for thousands of newsletter subscribers and social media followers. Today, Insider has some 25,000 newsletter subscribers, nearly 40,000 Twitter followers, plus more than 55,000 on Facebook and Instagram, and 200,000-plus monthly readers.
Insider couldn’t have done any of it without loyal readers who pushed, prodded, provided tips and kept the organization honest.
Insider responded to a need in the community for informative, long-form investigative news – without a paywall. Hopefully, #loumedia will keep local and state officials honest and continue to push for much-needed transparency. It is no longer hyperbole to say that Democracy hangs in the balance. Louisville will have a much better future because of such dogged reporting.
Insider moved to a nonprofit model in a bold effort to become more sustainable to create even greater transparency in reporting and practices. The mission had always been to provide the essential service of reputable local journalism to the community, and leaders felt this transition would help relate that message in a more tangible way.
In doing so, Insider was part of a national movement in which hundreds of local nonprofit media organizations cropped up across the country as for-profit media companies closed or downsized dramatically. Insider leadership visited many of those organizations to benchmark the transition with the hope that ultimately readers would sustain a robust newsroom with the help of corporate sponsors and foundation support.
Out of the gate, advertising exceeded many of our peers, and foundations and corporate supporters came to our side. We were able to expand our newsroom.
Even more, Insider gained traction with individual and corporate donors that kept the nonprofit running even after a downsizing of top leaders in February. A streamlined team of six reporters and an editor, plus two dedicated community engagement specialists kept the news flowing and events running for as long as possible until this latest development.
Regardless of what was happening within the organization, Insider doubled down on the backbone issues of our community: business, culture, education, government and health.
The editorial team of stalwart journalists – Boris Ladwig, Darla Carter, Joe Sonka, Kevin Gibson, Sara Havens, Olivia Krauth and Mickey Meece (and others before them) – was buttressed by an amazing group of contributors who made their mark with every profile, preview, review and feature.
Here is just some of the great reporting Insider provided to the community.
- Insider punched above its weight to report on the University of Louisville scandal in the early days.
- Insider pushed hard on the troubled operations of JCPS leading up to its settlement with the Kentucky Board of Education.
- Insider explored the existence of a secretive group of power brokers who were part of an organization called SCALA.
- Insider dove into the state’s effort to add work requirements to Medicaid.
- Insider explained the complicated relationship Passport had with a for-profit entity called Evolent well before the two agreed to a merger.
- Insider unraveled the complicated financial underpinnings of Jewish Hospital as its current owner looks to sell it.
- Insider covered bourbon as its own beat and reported beyond brand labels to feature the people and places that have helped build the industry in both tradition and innovation.
And so much more.
The Insider team is grateful to every single reader, member, sponsor, and contributor for believing that quality local journalism matters. Insider stories were delivered to empower readers to be better citizens, inspired patrons and curiously engaged in our community. InsiderLouisville.com will continue publishing until Aug. 7.