Connecticut Newspaper Founded by Ralph Nader Shuts Down Due to Financial Problems


Updated: 12:02 AM, Tue November 21, 2023

Connecticut Newspaper Founded by Ralph Nader Succumbs to Financial Problems

The Winsted Citizen, a small Connecticut newspaper founded earlier this year with the help of consumer advocate Ralph Nader, has announced its closure due to financial difficulties. The paper served Nader’s hometown and the surrounding area in the northwestern hills of the state since February. Despite its efforts to survive in a challenging media landscape, the publication fell victim to declining ad and circulation revenue.

Andy Thibault, an experienced journalist who served as editor and publisher of The Winsted Citizen, broke the news of the closure in a memo to staff. Thibault expressed gratitude for the team’s efforts and resilience but noted that it had become impossible to sustain the newspaper. We beat the Grim Reaper every month for most of the year, Thibault wrote. Now, our quest regrettably has become the impossible dream.

With the closure of The Winsted Citizen, the fate of the newspaper mirrors the struggles faced by countless other publications grappling with the challenges of the digital age. According to a recent report by the Northwestern/Medill Local News Initiative, the US has lost nearly 2,900 newspapers since 2005, with over 130 confirmed closings or mergers in the past year alone. The report further predicts that one-third of US newspapers will have closed by the end of 2021.

Ralph Nader, who played a key role in the establishment of The Winsted Citizen, was unavailable for comment. In a previous interview with The Associated Press, Nader lamented the loss of previous local newspapers in Winsted and expressed the importance of maintaining a connection to one’s community through print journalism. Nader had hoped that The Winsted Citizen would become a model for the rest of the country, with people yearning for the tangible experience of reading a newspaper about their town.

The newspaper published nine editions and employed 17 reporters, emphasizing its commitment to serving its local community. It aimed to sustain its operations through ad revenue, donations, and subscriptions to produce monthly editions. Despite increasing ad revenue and circulation, The Winsted Citizen struggled with an unsustainable deficit. Many staff members resorted to donating their services instead of earning wages due to under-capitalization.

The paper faced financial challenges early on, as funding for the second edition fell through. To mitigate this setback, The Winsted Citizen formed a partnership with online news provider, where both publications shared their respective articles. In light of the closure, has expressed willingness to consider publishing work from former Citizen staffers.

The Winsted Citizen was overseen by the nonprofit Connecticut News Consortium, whose board decided to close the publication. The inability to overcome financial hurdles ultimately led to the demise of this community-focused newspaper.

As the media landscape continues to evolve, the closure of The Winsted Citizen serves as a stark reminder of the challenges facing newspapers across the United States. The loss of local newspapers not only diminishes access to news but also erodes the connection between communities and their shared history. While digital platforms offer convenience, the tangible experience of reading a newspaper remains a cornerstone of local journalism. The closure of The Winsted Citizen underscores the urgent need to find sustainable models that preserve the vital role of print journalism in communities across the country.

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Michael Wilson
Michael Wilson
Michael Wilson, a seasoned journalist and USA news expert, leads The Reportify's coverage of American current affairs. With unwavering commitment, he delivers up-to-the-minute, credible information, ensuring readers stay informed about the latest events shaping the nation. Michael's keen research skills and ability to craft compelling narratives provide deep insights into the ever-evolving landscape of USA news. He can be reached at for any inquiries or further information.

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