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News Journal’s new editor says “Hello”

on Wednesday, 23 May 2018. Posted in Columns, Opinions

By: Philip Maenza

Hello, my name is Philip James Maenza III. I am the new editor here at the News Journal. I have already met so many new people and long time readers of the News Journal and I look forward to meeting many more. I wanted to take the time to introduce myself a little bit more in-depth to you, the readers.

I grew up in Pennsylvania. My parents are pastors of an Assemblies of God church in my hometown. I am the oldest of four siblings. I have two brothers and sister. I went to Houghton College. It is a small Christian liberal arts college in Western New York, about an hour south of Buffalo. Last fall a good friend was moving to Florence to start a new job. I had just begun my master’s degree online and thought that it would be a wonderful new opportunity to live in South Carolina. I packed up my bags, my cat, and left my winter boots behind and made the nearly 12 hour drive down here.

The area has grown on me so quickly over the past few months. I have enjoyed the events downtown, ice skating in the Florence Center, reading a lot of books at the public library, and of course the food.

I had been a reader before I even knew of the opportunity of this position. It was because of the paper that I was able to know of local events, community news, and some of the people that live here. I felt as though the paper was a bridge between all the community members and it is what brought me a little closer to this wonderful area.

But that’s enough about me, I want to you talk about you, the reader. I know change is not always easy. I had the opportunity to train with Brenda Harrison, the former editor of 30 years before she retired. I saw the impact she had on this community and the important role she played for you as readers. I know I will never be able to replace Brenda. But I do plan to carry on her legacy. I want to continue what she started all those years ago: bringing good news to the community of Florence, Hartsville, Marion and Cheraw.

The past two weeks here have already been fun and rewarding and I look forward to many years working to provide the readers of the News Journal with the good news they love. I am always looking for a good news story, but more importantly I am always looking to get to know the readers.

I am excited to see what the future holds for all of us. I look forward to the stories yet to come. I especially look forward to the friendships that are going to be made. I’ve heard it said that “it takes a village to raise a child”, but I also think it takes a community to make a newspaper.

As I begin to create relationships in this community I am going to rely on each of you to help me find the best news, good news, that you as the readers love. Please feel free to contact me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., call the office at 843-667-9656, or by stopping by the main office in Florence.