Boulder and Jefferson County are at a pivotal juncture; decisions made now will determine the sort of community this becomes for future generations. Who will move here? Who will stay? Where will their jobs come from? Where will they shop, dine, and find services? Will the young continue to enjoy good schools? Will the elderly get the care they deserve? Will all stay safe from crime, violence, and the ravages of substance abuse?
And most of all: How can this place preserve the quality of life that its citizens have come to enjoy? How will the small towns of Jefferson County, like small towns across Montana and across the West, survive?
The Monitor is taking on these central questions. We are committed to reporting on the many challenges facing our community, explaining what’s wrong and why – and, when merited, who’s at fault. We believe that understanding what’s broken is the first step toward fixing it, and that our leaders must be transparent and accountable.
But we also know that, if people only read about what’s broken, citizenship and democracy suffer. Faced with a constant barrage of bad news, many people retreat into disengagement, cynicism, polarization, and dysfunction. They begin to think that problems are insurmountable, that change is too difficult, and that they’re powerless to make a difference.
The reality, of course, is quite different. That’s why the Monitor also reports on the individuals and institutions working to fix those problems, here and elsewhere. We hope that this solutions-focused coverage helps bridge divisions, providing a platform for constructive discussions about the county’s present and future. We also hope it strengthens agency, providing encouragement for more people to get involved in working for change.
Founded in 1907 after combining two predecessors, the Monitor has served Jefferson County for more than a century. It was purchased in 2018 by Response Media LLC, owned by Keith Hammonds and Jackie Dyer. Before that, it had been operated since 2002 by Jefferson County Courier and Printing, LLC, owned by David and Jan Anderson.
We’re grateful to you for welcoming us to Jefferson County, and we look forward to meeting and hearing from everyone: Tell us what’s important to you and how you think the Monitor is doing at covering that. We’re proud to be stewarding the Monitor in the next phase of its 111-year life. And we’re excited about its future.