Charlene Bisson named INI’s CEO

Posted 12/27/21

Charlene (Patti) Bisson, 44, has been named president and CEO of Independent Newsmedia Inc. USA.  She is only the fourth person to serve as the company’s CEO in its 68-year …

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Charlene Bisson named INI’s CEO


Charlene (Patti) Bisson, 44, has been named president and CEO of Independent Newsmedia Inc. USA.  She is only the fourth person to serve as the company’s CEO in its 68-year history.

INI’s new CEO grew up in Glendale, and graduated from Arizona State University in 1999 with a bachelor's degree in Journalism and Mass Communications, with a minor in Business.  During her 22 years with INI, she advanced from reporting to editing to West Valley publisher before taking over as Arizona group publisher in 2018.  She lives in Peoria with her husband, Will, and their three children.

Bisson is passionate about INI’s commitment to nonpartisan journalism, opinions with civility and community service, and has been recognized by various civic organizations for her leadership.  She serves as president of the Peoria Diamond Club, a charity that gives back to youth. She is also a board member of the Arizona Newspapers Association.

Under her leadership, Arizona has become INI’s largest and fastest growing group.  Now, as CEO, she will be responsible for all of INI’s corporate, digital, printing and publishing operations in four states, working with the company’s directors and officers.

“She has earned the respect of all of INI’s key people, the performance of her teams proves that she is a terrific leader, and our board of directors unanimously agreed that it was time to ask Charlene to usher in a new generation of INI leadership,” said board chair Joe Smyth and vice chair Ed Dulin in a joint statement. 

“I look forward to expanding our online, print and event operations while embracing ever-changing technology to reach all generations with our purposeful journalism and opinions with civility,” Bisson said.

Smyth, now 80, was INI’s second CEO (1969-2014) and Dulin, 70, was the third (2014-2021).  From 1953-1969, Jack Smyth, Joe’s father, was CEO of Delaware State News, Inc. before the name was changed to INI after the company started expanding beyond Delaware.  

The company operates community newspapers and websites in Arizona, Delaware, Florida and the Eastern Shore of Maryland, as well as printing companies in Arizona and Delaware.

INI’s approach to journalism is devoted to straight and nonpartisan reporting. Instead of writing editorials, it draws citizens into community decision-making and showcases the public’s opinions with civility.  INI’s pledge to purposeful neutrality --- along with its focus on community issues, organizations and local involvement --- help build a strong sense of community.

INI is a for-profit company that pays taxes the same as any other for-profit.  It does not pay dividends to any individuals or groups, however, since it is 100% owned by a non-profit journalistic trust.  This means that all after-tax profits are reinvested in the company and its mission.


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