PERRY: ‘Green Bay Packers experiment’ would put the ‘we’ in Aurora’s need for news

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More than 8,000 shareholders with stock in the Green Bay Packers attend the annual shareholders’ meeting July 25, 2022, at Lambeau Field in Green Bay Wisconsin. Sentinel Colorado is studying the only community-owned NFL team as a model for newspaper ownership in Aurora, and across the state. SENTINEL COLORADO

Greg, Joyce and Tim all agree that by buying stock in the Green Bay Packers, they each got a worthless piece of paper.

The three of them are among the 537,460 who’ve peeled off anywhere from $5 to $300 dollars during one of six times the Packers have had offerings for stock shares. They’re shares that can’t be sold or traded and pay no dividends — in cash.

The Green Bay Packers are the only community-owned football team in the NFL.

While these three stockholders, and others whom I queried July 25 during the team’s annual shareholder meeting inside Lambeau Field, lampooned their unique certificates, they each went on to detail how critical the football organization was to each of them and the entire Green Bay community.

“We wouldn’t have any of this without the Pack,” Greg, my Uber driver, said as he pointed out a school, a winery and a factory that makes napkins for probably half the country. “I wouldn’t have this job.”

We drove away from Green Bay’s Titletown, an amazing city center, courtesy of the Packers and the community. It’s filled with places to eat, drink and play. It’s also a hub to startup businesses among fellow entrepreneurs at TitletownTech, arguably the best working space in Wisconsin.

Joyce’s share reaches back to 1950. The “just a worthless piece of paper” has been parlayed time and again, she said, into a community prize offering something for everyone — jobs, road repairs and a future.

It seemed to be a citywide consensus that — love, hate or be unable to care less about the Packers — investment in the team paid everyone near, and far, dividends that can’t be measured in margins, points or splits.

It’s the combined force of the community and “The Pack” that makes things happen for the Green Bay community. 

“It’s ‘we,’” said Tim Clark of nearby DePere, Wisconsin, who bought his $200 share in 1997. “When ‘we’ do something, and when the team does something, it really is ‘we.’”

And that ‘we’ brings me to The Sentinel.

Almost two months ago, the years-long owner of this century-old newspaper donated what is now a digital daily and print weekly Colorado staple to a bold experiment in keeping The Sentinel, and so many papers like it, alive.

A group of passionate journalists and others who just as passionately understand the critical mission of the media, The Colorado News Collaborative, joined with news industry consultant Joaquin Alvarado to orchestrate a holding company.

That’s where The Sentinel is now. Holding.

We’re in a holding pattern while Alvarado’s Colorado Journalism Investment Group and others explore a unique idea: Green Bay Pack-ing The Sentinel for Aurora.

Like the Packers, you either love, hate or couldn’t care-less about what The Sentinel offers up several times a day, every day. But the impact from both is critical to the people who live and work in the community.

Yesterday, Sentinel Reporter Max Levy brought Aurora keen insights into a proposal that could drastically change the balance of power on the Aurora City Council by combining city elections with general elections.

Last week, The Sentinel offered readers critical details and context about Aurora Police Department’s mandated reform progress. It’s a story that directly impacts every Aurora resident and business in the shadow of use-of-force abuses scrupulously documented by The Sentinel.

Also last week, The Sentinel brought readers a close look at how schools in the Aurora region are handling security just after the Uvalde, Texas, school massacre.

Over the past few weeks, Sports Editor Courtney Oakes offered unparalleled insight and detail into dozens of local athletes, tabbed All-City best across a bevy of sports.

And just before I left for the Green Bay Packers annual shareholder meeting, The Sentinel took readers on a gripping 10-year tour of the community since the 2012 Aurora theater massacre.

And don’t miss reporter Carina Julig’s story about how an Arkansas artist created and moved an 8,500-pound, 38-foot abstract sculpture to a growing Aurora outdoor museum.

Together, we did all that. Our commitment and yours makes all that possible. The Sentinel and you, our readers, supporters, detractors, advertisers, subscribers and donors, make all this unique and crucial journalism happen, every day.

This is a “we” proposition.

The Sentinel is exploring how “we” can emulate what the community of Green Bay did in 1923, when they offered stock in a venture that has become critical every day there, whether you love or hate them, or they win or lose.

We’re working through the details to find out how we can parlay community investment in The Sentinel, so it can grow and thrive to offer the Aurora region all the news it needs.

“We” are looking for a way to ensure a stronger Sentinel can provide all of us with a critical free press, so that generations to come can be assured that “we” have their backs, win or lose.

Follow @EditorDavePerry on Twitter and Facebook or reach him at 303-750-7555 or [email protected]

  

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Publius
Publius
1 month ago

The “product” the Packers produce appealed to the community at large, and has continued to do so for a century. The Sentinel’s “product” apparently lacks the appeal to generate support. Perhaps the Sentinel should give the people what they want rather than what its editorial board deems that which they need to hear. The consumers have rejected the editorial policy slant.

My best wishes to the fine people associated with the Sentinel. They have chosen principle over popularity, but there are consequences for having taken those stands.

Publius
Publius
1 month ago

Its like Yogi Berra said, “If the people don’t want to come out to the ballpark, nobody’s going to stop them.” In the present instance if the people will not support your journalistic efforts, you are not going to stop them.

Still, best wishes moving forward.

DICK MOORE
1 month ago

This part of “we” thinks you, the Sentinel, may be running out of money, leading to insolvency faster than “we” believed.

I doubt that anyone in the Green Bay community that hated or didn’t care less for the Packers ever bought a share of the Team. This is where your fund raising will go astray.

My guess is your paper and editorials have eliminated at least 50% or more of the Aurora readers who probably control 75% of the Citywide total wealth. It will be interesting to see who will be right in your fund raising idea. You or “we”.

Sandy
1 month ago
Reply to  DICK MOORE

I find your response so interesting. I have read your letters, sometimes paragraphs so long, I lose interest and you lose focus. You use this newspaper to express your views, your political stance, your background, your work history, etc. This newspaper is your pulpit, and it has been for such a long period of time. If it goes under, where will you go to be heard? You write so often, you’re a regular contributor, whether we like it or not. You owe the Sentinel a lot of cash!

DICK MOORE
1 month ago
Reply to  Sandy

Sandy, thanks for reading my comments for such a long time. At least you have been able to see the “other side”. I’ll be fine when the Sentinel goes under. At that time, I suppose I’ll just communicate with conservatives, somewhere.

Bart Emanuel
Bart Emanuel
1 month ago

It’s a shame that newspapers are going the way of the dodo as infotainment and social media continue to gain in popularity. The only ones hanging on have been bought by the wealthy foxes to ensure the hens see the world as they do. Just look at Bezos and the Washington Post, Murdoch and the New York Post, or local monster Anschutz and the various Gazette flavors of bird cage liner he now owns.

Media consolidation, especially in print, television, and radio, has directly given disproportionate voice and credence to white nationalism and have fanned the flames of stochastic terrorism. Here’s hoping this local paper can survive the onslaught, but I suspect before long it’ll be all fascism all the time in the metro.

Don
Don
1 month ago
Reply to  Bart Emanuel

This paper behaves in the exact same way as those evil foxes do. You know that right? Bonus points for your daily use of the word fascism. Thanks for your effort to diminish the actual meaning and value of these words by using them anywhere and everywhere and labeling everyone you don’t agree with as such.

GeneD
1 month ago

Unable to sell or trade shares, no dividend; I think I missed the point of the benefit of these shares and how they, through the Packers, have produced all the stated benefits.

Maybe another article with better clarification? If this is something the Walton/Kroenke cartel could make money from I’m sure they’d be interested.

Milton D Hayman
1 month ago

Why dont you just hire
a conservative editorial
columnist to counter
your liberal views? It might increase readership.

GeneD
1 month ago

Well, you and at least 3 conservative constant commentators read it. So, there’s that.