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Sarasota Creative Loafing Loss is Florida’s Indie News Gain

Sheesh. I finally hit my groove with Creative Loafing editor Cooper Levey-Baker and now he’s leaving!! Yup, the boy-wonder who was playing with the big boys in Florida politics to get Obama elected … the literati who loves books and if I recall correctly had the chutzpah to travel to Italy to hunker down to write a year or two back … the guy who hired me and gave me a regular writing gig in print in this town when no one else would touch me … yup … that guy’s leaving Creative Loafing to go on to greener, more indie pastures.

Good luck, Coop — (damn you! :) )


After an extensive statewide search, The American Independent News Network (AINN) is pleased to announce that it has appointed Cooper Levey-Baker to be the first editor of The Florida Independent.

“Cooper comes to The Florida Independent with a political news sensibility combined with a great understanding of Florida’s diverse landscape that will lend well to editing the newest site in The American Independent News Network,” said AINN President and CEO David Bennahum, “I am confident that Cooper will lead his team of reporters based across the state successfully toward our Network’s mission of impact journalism.”

“I am thrilled to take on this new challenge as editor for the brand new Florida Independent,” stated Levey-Baker. “I look forward to working with our reporters to grow this site from the ground up and tackling the difficult issues facing Floridians, maintaining the high standard of writing and investigative journalism for which The American Independent News Network is known.”

With half his life spent living in Sarasota, Fla., Levey-Baker has been the editor of city’s Creative Loafing, an alternative weekly newspaper, for the past year and half, previously serving as an events editor and reporter for the publication for five years. The Arts Council of Sarasota County recognized Levey-Baker for fiction writing in 2006, awarding him a John Ringling Fund Individual Artist Fellowship. In his spare time, Levey-Baker serves on the board of Forum Truth, a nonprofit organization that invites high-profile speakers to Sarasota to address the issues of the day. He is also a member of the steering committee of One Book Sarasota, a nonprofit effort aims to foster a love of reading in Sarasota County.

The Florida Independent will launch by June 1, 2010. The Knight Foundation awarded The Florida Independent project $352,000–the largest amount given–out of $4.3 million to 24 total other projects across the country. The projects represent the second-year winners of the Knight Community Information Challenge, a five-year, $24 million contest that helps community and place-based foundations find creative ways to use new media and technology to keep residents informed and engaged.

The American Independent News Network investigates and disseminates news that impacts public debate and advances the common good. To accomplish its mission, The American Independent News Network operates a nonprofit, nonpartisan network of online news sites: The Colorado Independent, The Iowa Independent, The Michigan Messenger, The Minnesota Independent, The New Mexico Independent, The Washington Independent and soon The Florida Independent.

Posted on April 22nd, 2010Comments RSS Feed
5 Responses to Sarasota Creative Loafing Loss is Florida’s Indie News Gain
  1. John W. Perkins
    April 22, 2010 at 10:14 am

    Cheer up M.C., being as it is a liberal rag, led by a liberal hack, it’s doomed to fail..

  2. John, friend, buddy, say, while I’ve been keeping up with MC’s blog since it’s inception and like you, have been a follower, admirer and supporter of her truly amazing columns from day one, can I ask that please, we try something new and leave politics out of every single post?! I mean, this Republicans slaming Democrats and visa-versa is getting so old, it’s becomong a task to try and pick up a newspaper anymore without seeing mudslinging. Why do we truly not join arms and try to resolve differences and get this Country to be as great as it once was? This constant blaming the weather on a particular political affiliation is getting to be total nonsence. There are so many problems facing us today, you hardly see anyone smiling on the streets anymore. This economy, the foreclosure crisis, the constant spending of trillians of dollars a year on a war that will never end…etc… What do you say we truly try and make a difference by doing something good, like help a neighbor who is struggling, help and elderly person walk across the street. One act of kindness goes a long way. I’m ready to make a difference, how about you?
    MC, I apologize for this post, but politics is rapidly becoming an ugly subject. It’s no wonder that almost 80% of Americans, do not trust local Governments. Thank you for your time. Daniel

  3. I’d like a post strictly about cats!
    That’s neutral enough for anyone!

  4. […] Today is my last day at Creative Loafing and thus, this is my 319th and final Linkage. (I can only assume that Richard Swier at Red County […]

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