In a joint announcement Monday, Northern Neck Newspaper Group, LLC and Lakeway Publishers, Inc. of Morristown, Tennessee announced an agreement for Lakeway to acquire substantially all of the assets of Northern Neck Newspapers which includes the Northern Neck News, Westmoreland News, The Caroline Progress, and Northumberland Echo, according to Gary Greene of Cribb, Greene & Associates, who represented the seller in the transaction.
Mike Diederich, in making the announcement said, “Since the untimely passing of my father, J.W. ‘Bill’ Diederich, in March of last year his estate has been held open and this action will facilitate its settlement. I’m confident that Lakeway shares the same strong sense of stewardship that we have had in owning these fine newspapers and has the resources to ensure their long-term viability. On behalf of my family, I’d like to thank all of the stakeholders in the communities we’ve served for their trust, loyalty and friendship, especially our devoted employees, readers and advertisers.”
R. Jack Fishman, President of Lakeway, in the announcement said, “We are pleased that Mike Diederich and the estate of Bill Diederich chose Lakeway to carry on the rich traditions of community journalism in the ‘Heart of Historyland’ that means so much to the founding of our country.”
“We stress for each our newspapers to be independent in reporting the news and activities of their communities. We believe that each of our newspapers is an integral part of their community and must work with other community leaders to build up its institutions to provide a good quality of life for all our citizens.
Community newspapers write about people and their community and what is happening in it. They are a part of what they write.”
Lakeway Publishers, Inc. began as the Citizen Tribune, a daily and Sunday newspaper in 1966. In addition to the Tribune, Lakeway now publishes over twenty weekly, tri-weekly and bi-weekly community newspapers, The Civil War Courier, The Camp Chase Gazette, The Citizens Companion and several specialty magazines and shoppers.
The four papers in the Northern Neck Group will continue to operate under their individual titles and W. B. Trimble will serve as Vice-President and Publisher. Trimble has extensive newspaper experience and throughout his career has published newspapers in Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and New York.
Trimble said, “As a native Virginian, I am excited about the opportunity to publish these newspapers in such an historic area. I am passionate about community journalism and look forward to working with the staff and readers to create the best local newspapers possible.”
Other officers of Lakeway include Jeffrey Fishman, vice-president of newspapers in middle Tennessee and Michael Fishman, corporate secretary/treasurer.
Cribb, Greene & Associates is an eighty-four year old newspaper brokerage company with offices in Charlottesville, Virginia, and Bozeman, Montana.