Today starts a new chapter in the 104-year old story of community and service. The South Dade News Leader, your source of local news and local advertising, is now absolutely LOCAL.
Dale Machesic, News Leader publisher since 2010, has purchased the newspaper from the Calkins Media Group of Pennsylvania, who has owned the paper since 1961.
Machesic’s vision is that ‘your community is your extended family’.
“The News Leader is the home base that connects you to the entire community. A community source of information all in one place to find out about local news, community events, great students, amazing high school sports, city meetings and achievements, church happenings, entertainment events, volunteer opportunities, marketplace for household services, retail shopping, dining, entertainment, even where to find your next house or vehicle.”
Machesic said, “going forward, we want your input. If we need to do something better, tell us. If you have a bone to pick or an opinion you feel strongly about, tell us with a letter to the editor. More than ever the News Leader is going to be your voice…your opportunity to be heard.”
Machesic made the decision to purchase the paper when Calkins decided to sell their Florida television stations and focusing in the Pennsylvania-New Jersey markets where they have been anchored for many years.
CEO of Calkins Mark Contreras said, “we’re happy that Dale will continue in his role not only as publisher but as owner. There is no one more optimistic about the future of Homestead and the surrounding area than Dale and we’re confident that his natural optimism will continue to result in good things for the paper and the community. We wish him and his new company the very best.”
Machesic moved here in late 2010. His family had never been to South Florida before and weren’t really sure what to expect. They immediately ‘found a new home’. They were in awe of the fact that they now were surrounded by some of America’s most breathtaking national parks. The ‘postcard’ Florida Keys were right next door. His family became racing fans when they discovered that Homestead is home to the super bowl of auto racing, held at what is commonly regarded as the nation’s most championship worthy track.
They found themselves becoming very prideful of the sounds of freedom originating at our air reserve base A far cry from the relatively quiet reserve base they lived near back in Pennsylvania.
Homestead city officials have shown leadership in bringing a premier performing arts center, a new city hall and government center, new police station and the city’s growth continues to expand to the east. There are real plans on the drawing board for a ‘cybrary’ which will be a magnet for our kids and for a a family entertainment center that will bring new life to the downtown area. Homestead is home to one of the best schools in the entire state in MAST Academy. Florida City continues to be a business friendly city with development on U.S. #1 in every direction. There are plans for a family entertainment center that will put our community on the map for family destinations and multiple single family homes are coming soon.
South Dade’s proud tradition of acres and acres of agriculture, from row crops shipped around the country to exotic horticultural products seen in every store and in the finest homes landscape plan across the country.
South Dade is a great place to call home now and plans are in place to make it an even better for our families to call home. And the News Leader is in place to be there every step of the way.
Several of our community leaders reacted to the news of the ownership now being local.
Florida City Mayor Otis Wallace, “I was very happy to find that the News Leader "our hometown newspaper" was purchased by local owners. On behalf of Florida City I ask that we all join together and support this effort by spending our advertising dollars locally.”
Homestead City Mayor Jeff Porter said, “"The News Leader has always been a big part of Homestead and South Dade, so it's fitting that our hometown paper is going to be truly local. For decades they've been a trusted source for community news, and I know they'll continue to be a vital part of Homestead for years to come."
CenterState Bank President Bob Epling commented, “To have a true ‘representative voice’ for our community, in the form of a locally owned NEWSLEADER is an important pillar of strength for all.”
Maria Garza, President of the Mexican American
Council added, "The people of South Dade are most fortunate to have a newspaper we can call our own. We are blessed to have Dale Machesic as the new owner of the South Dade News Leader. In the words of JFK "we could not do the job at all in a free society without a very, very active press". I urge all to support our South Dade News Leader. Congratulations Mr. Machesic and God Speed."
Pastor Chauncey Brown had this to say about the new ownership, ""It is with much excitement that I congratulate Dale Machesic on becoming the new owner of the South Dade News Leader. The News Leader under your leadership was already such a great asset to our community, but now with you as the owner we know that it will give the New Leader a much more homegrown flavor. I am looking forward to doing all I can support and push our community to take more pride in a paper that is not only circulated here but is owned and operated here."
Homestead Miami Speedway President Matt Becherer added, "The South Dade News Leader has become an integral part of the landscape here in south Miami-Dade County. For decades it has served the community in many ways, one of which is providing a unique local perspective in their stories that resonate with the area and its proud residents. There is a deep understanding and caring for the community on the part of the South Dade News Leader, and Dale Machesic is the primary reason why they have become so ingrained here. Through their many philanthropic endeavors over the years, they have afforded tremendous opportunities for local students to succeed in the classroom and in life. They are much more than just a newspaper. They have played a major role in maximizing the quality of life in an area that has shown a great deal of resilience."
Machesic says, "please be patient with us. But do not hesitate to take us to task. If we do better, that benefits everyone in this community. We are going to make some changes. Beginning in the next few weeks, you'll see a new feature dedicated to our local churches and the good work they are doing."
"I believe in our mission to do everything we can to make our community grow and prosper. You can help us by telling us what is going on in your neighborhood. If you want to reach our readers, we will welcome all responsible thoughts and comments you bring us. We are proud to continue to help shape this amazingly diverse and heartwarming community. Together, we are the South Dade family."