The Undercurrent is excited to welcome Matt Blair aboard as the newspaper’s new publisher.
Matt began his new role this month, and brings nearly two decades of media experience to Bowen, including his existing position as publisher of our sister paper the North Shore News.
Matt has also served as publisher of the Delta Optimist, and is president of the B.C. & Yukon Community News Media Association.
Blair expresses his fondness for news at the community level.
“Community newspapers are the foundation of the news media landscape in Canada. The vast majority of stories you see on television, or hear about on the radio, were broken by a local newspaper reporter,” he says.
Matt adds that’s especially the case on Bowen.
“The Undercurrent is a truly special newspaper largely due to the relationships it fosters with its contributors. I would argue it is more representative of Bowen’s community than many other newspapers and our team takes great pride in that,” says Blair.
Of course, Matt’s arrival means the departure of longtime publisher Peter Kvarnstrom, who has guided the Undercurrent since 2015. Kvarnstrom leaves the role with fond memories, while noting despite the move he doesn’t plan to be a stranger to the island.
“The time has come for me to step back from my day to day role as publisher here at the Undercurrent. How the years roll by. It was seven years ago that I assumed responsibility for the Undercurrent. Over those years I have been privileged to serve our wonderful island community. I met so many of you and was welcomed into your community. Working with all the professionals at the Undercurrent has truly been fulfilling,” he says.
Kvarnstrom is also confident he is placing the Undercurrent in solid hands.
“We have appointed Matt Blair, of North Vancouver, as our publisher going forward. Matt joins us with a wealth of publishing experience and enthusiasm for local media and its role in building community. We hope you welcome Matt to Bowen and show your support for the Undercurrent any way you can - buy a subscription, buy a copy at the store or place your advertising where we’ll all see it. Shop local and support local,” says Kvarnstrom.
As for where you can find Matt when he’s out and about? “In my spare time I enjoy hiking and sailing, but nothing beats an ocean swim on a warm summer evening,” says Blair.
On behalf of the Undercurrent team, a massive thank you to Peter, and warm welcome to Matt!