The newspapers participating in the Dakotafire project are spread across thousands of square miles, and so are our readers. But even if we are not next-door neighbors, we are all in this community-building effort together. To help you get to know your partners in rural revitalization a bit better, we bring you this regular feature on Dakotafire’s participating newspapers. Say “hello” to the Clark County Courier, which has been a part of Dakotafire since the beginning. Welcome, Bill Krikac! We are happy to have you and Clark County on board.
Tell us a little about your newspaper.
The Clark County Courier is an SAU broadsheet serving the entire County of Clark including the towns of Clark, Willow Lake, Bradley, Crocker, Raymond, Carpenter, Garden City, Vienna, Naples and Henry in Codington County. Our employees are Kimberly Harrington, Annette Helkenn and Lisa McGraw.
When did you become the publisher?
I left an 18-year teaching career in 1995 to start my career as a newspaper publisher. Having bought the Clark County Courier from the Moritz family, I took over ownership in 2000-01.
What is the circulation?
Close to 2,000, although every time we run an obituary it usually means we lose a subscriber. We lose about 50 subscribers a year to that process.
What is interesting or great about your community?
Our county is a rural county, twice as long as it is wide, with two geographical features, the James River Valley and the Coteau de Prairies, dissecting Clark County. This causes a difference in weather conditions and moisture results. Our communities have great history, and the fifth governor of South Dakota, Gov. Samuel Elrod, was from Clark.
What is the best part of your job?
Being the publisher/editor of a newspaper means that life is not routine or in the least boring, as every week and every paper are different. In a small (population-wise), rural county, the newspaper is the primary place where people find the local news. Keeping up with school, county and city happenings is a 24/7 opportunity, and being involved with all activities is the best part of the newspaper business.