Each month, Thurston Community Media (TCMedia)’s Mission Nonprofit connects with local organizations and agencies that are making positive impacts in our communities. This month, Mission Nonprofit host Robert Kam sat down with Danny Stusser, executive director of The JOLT News, to discuss how they got started.
If Danny’s name sounds familiar, it’s because he was the publisher of the popular Coffee News, that shut down in March 2020. But Danny didn’t stay idle for long! Shortly after he started The JOLT News, a nonprofit news outlet covering Olympia, Lacey and Tumwater.
“Over the past few years, I became lonesome for news,” shares Danny on why he started The JOLT News. “We didn’t have much in the way of local coverage after about 2005, 2010 in Thurston County.”
While he had written a business plan back in 2011, it was during COVID that Danny was able to realize his dream, while the world was stopped, as he says. Almost a decade later, he launched his online news site in 2020.
In November 2021, The JOLT News became a registered nonprofit. The nonprofit is run by a seven-person board of directors and has two products. One is their headline newsletter, which sends out the day’s news headlines each evening (sign up at TheJolt.news) and the other is their online news site, The JOLT News.
There is no paywall on The JOLT News. “We don’t have a paywall,” Danny explains. “It’s part of the reason that we’re a nonprofit news organization. We believe that the local news should be available to anybody without regard for whether someone can pay for it.”
And while they do have advertisements, The JOLT News also relies on grants and reader donations in order to continue their mission. They are currently trying to raise a total of $150,000 in donations. “We are about halfway there on the reader revenue,” Danny says, which is $30,000 of that $150,000. “The reception that we had during the Give Local 2022 campaign was excellent.”
For more information, watch the full video above and visit The JOLT News website.
You can watch Mission Nonprofit on channel 77 on Sundays at 4:30 p.m., Tuesdays at 7 p.m., Thursdays at 7:30 p.m., and Saturdays at 6:30 p.m. You can also watch on TCMedia.org, Video On-Demand or our Roku channel. To learn more about what TCMedia does, visit the Thuston Community Media YouTube channel or the TC Media website and follow them on Facebook and Twitter.