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WXXI completes acquisition of CITY Newspaper

Kevin Indovino

The acquisition of CITY Newspaper by WXXI is official now. The deal first announced several months ago was signed Wednesday.

The agreement will see WXXI Public Broadcasting acquire the alternative weekly newspaper, which was founded by Mary Anna and Bill Towler in 1971.

The Towlers approached WXXI a number of months ago in an effort to make sure that CITY Newspaper continues after their retirement.

Mary Anna Towler says the newspaper has been an important part of the community because of everyone who has worked with them along the way.

“People associate Bill and me with the paper but we’ve got almost five decades of really, really wonderful writers and sales people and designers and photographers who’ve brought us to this point,” Towler explained.

WXXI President Norm Silverstein says this acquisition will help both entities expand their journalism.

“Everything we’re already doing at this point shows that we can increase our coverage of politics, of culture, of arts and most importantly of neighborhoods; we want to be hyper-local in this relationship and really cover the kind of stories you don’t find elsewhere,” Silverstein said.

Silverstein said that staffing will not be reduced as a result of the acquisition, and in fact, he said the collaboration that began a few months ago  on an informal basis has already produced increased news coverage.

Randy Gorbman is WXXI's director of news and public affairs. Randy manages the day-to-day operations of WXXI News on radio, television, and online.