The beginning of July marked the completion of our sixth year at The Capitolist, a perfect time to pause, check out some data, and make sure that our newsroom is on track to meet and exceed some of the goals we set for ourselves in January.
First, the benchmarks. We finished a record-setting 2021 by increasing subscribership to our morning ReCap newsletter by 500 percent – ending the year with nearly 27,000 subscribers – all of them highly engaged influencers who represent Florida’s movers and shakers. Also last year, we posted more than 1,000 news stories on a wide range of industries, including healthcare, agriculture, telecommunications, energy, tourism, gaming, financial services, insurance, real estate and others. The vast majority of those stories were based on the original reporting of The Capitolist’s staff.
So where do we stand at the midway point in 2022?
More than 40,000 email subscribers now receive The ReCap every morning. And our original news content is slightly ahead of last year’s pace, with 585 stories published so far. But we’ve also recently made some tweaks in the way our newsroom assigns stories, and we think that change will increase our output during the second half of the year. For now, our news team remains three strong, but we are always on the lookout for talented writers with a nose for news.
Jordan Kirkland is our longest tenured reporter, having been with us for three years. He covers the energy sector, as well as tourism, travel, entertainment, sports, gambling, and infrastructure.
Caden DeLisa joined The Capitolist November 2021, and recently did a lengthy stint as the editor of our morning email newsletter, The ReCap. His primary focus areas are education, including pre-K through 12th grade and the state’s college and university system, as well as public health, health care, hospitals and related subjects.
Brian Burgess continues to serve as Publisher and Editor-in-Chief, which includes duties as lead editor of The ReCap, but he also covers Florida’s agriculture industry, the environment, the state’s financial and insurance sectors, real estate and related industries.
But it’s not entirely about numbers.
Last week, for the first time in The Capitolist’s history, we entered the legal arena by filing a motion to intervene and unseal court records that, in our view, the public has a right to see. And we are proud to be joined in that legal intervention effort by the investigative reporting website, Florida Bulldog, which filed a notice as a joining intervenor in the case. We are glad to have them aboard.
The case is the Everglades Foundation v. Thomas Van Lent, and currently, the files and evidence are being kept secret from the public, even though the science and data at the heart of the case has likely been used to influence the spending of billions of state and federal tax dollars on Everglades restoration and water policy in South Florida.
We also criticized the state’s mainstream media – specifically the Miami Herald and the Palm Beach Post, for giving the Everglades Foundation a free pass, despite both newspapers claiming to be champions for transparency and the public interest.
It is no secret that our editorial philosophy is rooted in the belief that it is virtually impossible for Florida’s businesses to get a fair shake from the legacy media in our state. Time and time again, we’ve witnessed egregious editorial treatment of the state’s businesses by mainstream media who not only report through the lens of an anti-business editorial agenda, but who also actively suppress the ability of businesses to simply tell their side of the story.
Our news stories speak for themselves. We are proud of our work and we stand by everything we’ve ever published.
On the business side of the house, we enjoyed the support of 15 advertisers and sponsors in 2021. So far in 2022, we’ve received sponsorship and advertisers from 11 different companies and organizations, including several partners that are new to us. It is obviously our goal to continue growing our support in the second half of 2022.
If you’d like to support our mission through advertising or sponsorship, reach out and let us show you how we can help tell your story to The Capitolist’s highly engaged audience of opinion leaders, elected officials, state agency heads, government staffers, consultants, lobbyists, and business leaders across the state who value our content.