The Bucks County Herald, privately owned and operated by the Wingert family during the last two decades, has taken a big leap in creating a nonprofit foundation to support local journalism.
“A few months from now we will be donating our ownership of the company to a new charitable entity, the Bucks County Herald Foundation. In doing so, we hope to ensure the future of local journalism in our community,” said Bridget Wingert, the Bucks County Herald’s editor, and founder with her late husband, Joseph T. Wingert.
The Bucks County Herald Foundation has been registered as a charitable entity with the Pennsylvania Department of State, and final approval as a charitable foundation by the Internal Revenue Service is expected this fall. All charitable contributions to the Foundation, made in 2020 and beyond will be tax-deductible upon IRS approval retroactive to the day it was formed.
With more than one in five newspapers shuttering over the past 15 years, many news organizations have embraced nonprofit operating models as a means of survival. For the Herald, the coronavirus pandemic, which quickly decimated advertising revenue by over 50 percent, hastened this decision.
“Mission and service to the community are already in our DNA,” said Joseph G. Wingert, publisher. “We know that local government meetings, sports and community life go unreported when communities become news deserts. With public support, we can keep local journalism alive and be stronger than ever.”
Donations to the Bucks County Herald Foundation can be made online at buckscountyherald.com/donate
, by phone at 215-794-1096 (Monday-Friday) or by mail using the form on page A3 of the printed paper.