Your Name: Robin Thrush Jovanovich
Your Day Job: Editor and publisher. I cover the City Council and write both news stories and features. I take many of the photographs that appear, write most of the headlines and edit everything that goes in the paper.
(PHOTO: Robin Jovanovich with her husband Peter) The paper’s focus is Rye, although the paper is also mailed to every household in Purchase. We have a strong arts sections for a community paper — book and film reviews and art reviews of major exhibits in Manhattan, an “Out of Here” column on area concerts and cultural events, especially at SUNY Purchase, the Bruce Museum in Greenwich, and the Emelin in Mamaroneck.
Your Company: The Rye Record
Ours is an independent newspaper, which was started in the fall of 1996 by Dolores Eyler. She remains an owner, but I am the majority owner. Allen Clark was our partner until earlier this year, when he retired. The three of us were, for most of the life of the paper, a team.
The Rye Record began as a monthly and is now published 22 times a year. We publish a minimum of four special sections annually: Home, Garden, Schools, Holiday. We plan on doing our second restaurant guide this year.
The circulation is 10,000. Not only is the paper mailed free to every household in Rye and Purchase, but we hand deliver copies to every business and organization in Rye, and many in Harrison and Rye Brook.
MyRye.com: How many people work for your Rye paper?
Our small, but hard-working staff includes Duke Thrush, who handles Advertising & Production and does the Website, and Jim Byrne and April Miller, both associate editors. Jim covers the School Board and Sports; April covers School News and Obituaries. Any of them will do anything needed to get an issue out and work late, along with me, on deadline night. Ken Knowles, who handles our accounting, also sells advertising and is working with Rye merchants to make our website work for them.
A number of regular, mostly longtime contributors, write on everything from gardening to wines to the great outdoors.
How long have you worked for your company and what did you do before?
I started writing for the paper in 1997 and have been editor since 2000. I have worked in magazine and newspaper publishing since the summer of my senior year in high school when I worked for Ladies Home Journal. My first job out of college was with Time Inc. I took the only job they had — working at the first-floor desk, guiding visitors around photography exhibits, handling back issue requests. After nine months of waiting for an editorial job to open up, I left to work for The Westport News in Westport, Conn. My title was Features Editor. From there I went to work as an editor for Family Weekly, Good Housekeeping and Self.
After the birth of our second son, I stopped working full time and we started moving around the country and then overseas, I started working as a freelancer, for Conde Nast, Us magazine, The San Diego Union, The Patent Trader. I am the author of a children’s mystery.
What were the three biggest stories in Rye in 2007?
The Floods, the capture of the “Pillowcase Perp”, and the end of a Republican majority on the City Council were the biggest stories of 2007. The other big story was in sports; both the Rye High School field hockey and football teams were state champs.
1. We gave significant coverage to the March and April floods and their aftermath in print and on our Website, www.ryerecord.com.
2. Residents were pleased to read that the man suspected of 10 burglaries in Rye was arrested, with help from Rye Police, in Mt. Vernon December 5.
3. The ticket of Paula Gamache (D), Catherine Parker (I) and Joe Sack (R) was elected to the City Council November 6. The Rye Republican and Democratic Parties ran a combined ticket.
What are the three most interesting things about Rye that most people don’t know?
1. That a priest at Resurrection Church is responsible for the fact that homes on and around the Westchester Country Club grounds are within the Rye postal address. Reportedly, in 1910 when he heard that St. Gregory’s Church was to be built in Harrison, he asked the Postmaster of Rye to change the mailing address for those homes to Rye. It’s one of those stories that may be apocryphal. The details have never been fully explained or confirmed. We’re still checking into this!
2. The area near the mills, along Blind Brook from Oakland Beach Avenue to Stuyvesant, was never officially called “Milltown” on city maps. A real estate agent started calling the area that and it stuck, until the mills started closing.
3. Aviatrix Amelia Earhart wrote the first of her best-selling books while living in publisher George Putnam’s house at 355 Locust Avenue (Rye mailing address, but actually in Harrison). Putnam fell in love with Earhart, got a divorce, finally convinced Earhart to marry him and they moved to the house next door (street renamed Amelia Earhart Lane after her death). Part of the house was in Rye, part in Harrison, and Earhart liked to tell local residents that she gardened in Rye and ate dinner in Harrison.
What kind of stories do you most enjoy writing about?
Luckily, I enjoy writing about just about everything. I have covered City Council meetings for close to a decade; they’re the best way to keep abreast of the news and listen to residents. I haven’t missed many Memorial Day Ceremonies because the members of Rye American Legion Post 128 are among the best men and women I’ve ever known.
I would be content just interviewing writers and people from all walks of life as long as they have a sense of humor.
How does someone subscribe or get a copy of your paper?
Out-of-town subscriptions are available for $30 a year. Send us a check at 17 Elm Place, Rye, NY 10580 or call us at 925-0540 with credit card information.
We always keep extra copies of each issue, going back to November 1996, at our downtown Rye office. The day before an issue arrives in mailboxes we drop off 50 copies at the Rye YMCA, the Rye Free Reading Room, City Hall, and the Post Road Market. Many residents pick up copies at Rye Beach Pharmacy and Playland Market.
Tell us your contact information:
Your phone: 925-0540 (work)
Your email address: email@example.com