Home Chris Graham: Somebody has to do it

Chris Graham: Somebody has to do it


I don’t want to comment on the specifics of the ongoing investigation of the hiring of a full-time executive director for the Valley Community Services Board. Having served on several boards in the past, I’m sure that there are some details regarding the hiring that we’ve not been made privy to and may not be.

What I want to do here is comment on the investigation itself. The reports of the death of community journalism have not exactly been exaggerated. Staff cuts and hiring freezes and the like have been hurtful to local papers across the country, including here in the Greater Augusta market. Even here at the AFP, which didn’t exactly have much room to cut, we’ve had to refocus our priorities in order to survive, and that’s meant a painful reduction in in-depth investigative journalism, which takes time and thus gobs of money to support.

To cite an example from our recent past: We spent upwards of nine months looking into the hiring of the new Waynesboro voter registrar in an investigation that concluded that the hiring was done in violation of the spirit if not the letter of the law. That no action was taken as a result – the local Commonwealth’s attorney’s office declined to pursue the matter further being key among the lack of action from the officialdom – is beyond the point.

Good journalism isn’t done to have heads roll or win awards. It’s done for its own sake, mainly because it has to be done.

Here’s to hoping that local newspapers continue asking the hard questions and demanding answers. Somebody has to be willing to tell the emperors when they’re naked.

More columns at TheWorldAccordingToChrisGraham.com.



Have a story idea or a news tip? Email editor Chris Graham at [email protected]. Subscribe to AFP podcasts on Apple PodcastsSpotifyPandora and YouTube.

Latest News

isaac mckneely
Basketball, Sports

Analysis: Tony Bennett is letting his Virginia team try to do more in transition

elijah gertrude
Basketball, Sports

Virginia Basketball Notebook: Tony Bennett on Elijah Gertrude, Jordan Minor

Virginia coach Tony Bennett and freshman combo guard Elijah Gertrude had agreed before the start of the season that Gertrude should redshirt this year so that he could focus on rehabbing his knee.

chesapeake bay
Climate, U.S. & World

Maryland moves to curb striped bass fishing in spring spawning season

Spurred by slumping striped bass reproduction in Maryland waters, the state Department of Natural Resources is moving to curtail fishing for the popular migratory species during its spawning run next spring.

earth globe

Roddy Scheer: How do enhanced geothermal power plants differ from regular geothermal?

climate change

Roddy Scheer: War is horrible, and it is no less so for the environment


Tom H. Hastings: Guerrilla war in cities and other evolutionary missteps

veteran uniform

Robert C. Koehler: War does nothing but create the certainty of more war