MINNEAPOLIS (FOX 9) – For almost 90 years, the Minnesota spokesperson informed, inspired and educated the African American community of Twin Cities.
Today, the state’s oldest black newspaper and black-owned business is making headlines for a different reason.
“I like it because more people are going to know about MSR,” said editor and CEO Tracey Williams-Dillard.
Williams-Dillard says the newspaper is one of six black-owned businesses in Minneapolis and St. Paul to feature in the sixth season of Deluxe Corporation’s Small Business Revolution.
The TV show offers small business owners marketing and branding assistance as well as financial advice.
Williams-Dillard says he chose to focus on the Twin Cities after the pandemic and the social unrest that followed the murder of George Floyd.
“It’s that kick in the arm to get us into the next phase of whatever that next phase is, but you need that extra push, that extra oomph,” said Williams-Dillard.
She says the show also repainted the newspaper office, redesigned its newspaper, and updated its computers and furniture.
The biggest benefit of the show is the exposure to be on Hulu and Amazon Prime where people around the world will be able to see the newspaper’s contributions to its community.
“It’s important to me that we have this publicity, this recognition in the community so that people know we exist,” said Williams-Dillard.
Williams-Dillard says the Spokesperson-Recorder was started by his grandfather Cecil Newman in 1934 to give a voice to the voiceless and that getting a little attention might help him chronicle the black experience in Minnesota for another 9 decades.
“I want them to realize the importance of our presence here and the importance of helping us maintain and last another 87 years,” said Williams-Dillard.