When we launched the Free Press nearly 14½ years ago, we made our purpose known from the start: “Our mission is to contribute to a stronger and more vibrant community by practicing and promoting the highest standards of journalism for the benefit of our readers and advertisers.” We haven’t waivered from that mission, but we can honestly say our Marion County community has made our mission more achievable simply because we are not alone in this endeavor. Far from it, in fact.
This issue of the Free Press highlights the rich spirit of community we enjoy here. Stories highlight cooperation between citizens, cities and the business community to meet human needs, to improve our shared assets and to provide a tremendous environment for youth and children. Big cities have their appeal, but nothing builds servant character better than small towns like ours. —DR