Sustainability is a word I usually associate with environmentally friendly practices such as recycling, buying local and reducing energy use.
But lately I've been thinking about it in human capital terms.
If you read the story Doug Rooks wrote for our last issue about the changes in Maine's daily newspaper landscape, "Read all about it," you would know there's been a bidding war for reporters. I wasn't sure how we would compete given our specialized brand of reporting — believe me when I say no one goes to journalism school to become a business reporter — and the absence of a billionaire owner (although Mainebiz does have two great guys at the helm who blend business savvy with respect for the First Amendment.)
So I'm more than a little thrilled to announce two hires at Mainebiz who will sustain the exceptional brand of journalism we practice here. The first is Matt Dodge, an Auburn native who first impressed me when he interned at the Sun Journal. We became reacquainted when Matt began freelancing for us after a stint with the Portland Daily Sun.
Now a resident of Portland's Munjoy Hill, Matt joins us as staff writer, bringing with him his knowledge of Portland's business and cultural scene. His first cover story, "Timber stands," appears in this issue, a thorough and compelling look at competing forest certification programs that have been targeted in a recent gubernatorial executive order and how they affect the construction market in Maine. It's the kickoff to this issue's focus on sustainability, which is rounded out with a primer on green apps, "Sustainable tech," on page 19, and a profile of Goodwill Industries of Northern New England, which is setting the sustainability standard for charitable retailers in "Weighing in," starting on page 20.
Our other hire is a name well known by anyone in the midcoast region. Jim McCarthy, longtime editor of The Times Record, joins us as senior writer (the title is no reflection of Jim's distinguished grey beard.) Besides winning numerous journalism awards over his long career, Jim brings a deep understanding of Bath Iron Works and the reuse plans for Brunswick Naval Air Station, as well as Maine's marine and tourism industries. In this issue, he writes about the likely impact to Maine's footwear industry if the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement passes, in "Tariff debate hits close to home," on the cover.
Both Jim and Matt are graduates of the University of Southern Maine (locally sourced!) and we are so pleased to have them on board.
Any time you talk about journalists, the subject will naturally progress to coffee. Portland is in the throes of a gourmet coffee shop boom, with several more upscale coffee houses hanging out their shingles. What's driving this development is revealed in Contributing Writer Sara Anne Donnelly's story, "Business perks," also on the cover.
Go ahead and pour your own cup of joe, then sit back and peruse this issue. I'm certain you'll find something to help you sustain your own business.