Op-Ed: New Canaan’s Fourth Estate
BY JOHN ENGEL AND ROBERT DORAN
We live in challenging times for news. The Internet and the information age, professional pundits, fake news and 24-hour news cycles disrupted the old paradigm of trust and integrity in news organizations. Morley Safer of ‘60 Minutes’ said, “So much crap passes as information that not only does the audience sometimes miss the distinction between news and crap, the editors sometimes miss the distinction.”
To be a successful editor you not only have to find the story, you have to get it right. People have to want to read it, and they must trust it. We have been very lucky with the New Canaan Advertiser. As an essential source for all aspects of local news, the Advertiser has thrived under Greg Reilly’s editorial leadership.
For almost 100 years the New Canaan Advertiser was the only source for local news. No longer. To get our attention and break through the clutter of available news sources requires the skills of a great editor. Greg Reilly has lead with trust and integrity throughout his tenure at the Advertiser.
Greg comes by it honestly. He has been a reporter, editor or publisher since high school. He studied Journalism at Syracuse University and when he saw a need he created New Canaan Matters. He honed his craft running the Stratford Star before returning to run our beloved New Canaan Advertiser with great distinction for the past three and a half years.
Greg has in many ways been the voice of New Canaan. As our editor, he has been our chief storyteller, a steward of our town culture, and a voice of the people –– using his power as editor for checks and balances with Town leaders. He is often the last one in the room late at night when an important public meeting takes place –– asking tough questions and getting the story right before returning to his desk to put the weekly edition to bed.
Greg has never been afraid to take a position, but he has never been a contrarian. His great gift, as evidenced by his hosting the packed Friday morning Advertiser Coffee, has been listening to the people. He has promoted awareness of every important organization in town. He has moderated debates. He has been a pillar of the community.
Greg Reilly has held himself to the highest standards of journalism, held people to account and at all times he has embodied and celebrated what is best about New Canaan — Community. And we are better because he was here for a time.