Megan Sheehan - Editor, The Observer
Megan Sheehan - Editor, The Observer Matt Taylor

Our commitment, we're for you.

FOR more than 150 years The Observer has been a voice for this community.

We've had an ear to the ground in Gladstone, reporting on the matters you're talking about and joining the discussion.

It's a conversation that hasn't always been easy - we've seen dramatic changes to our population and property market and alongside the challenges we've celebrated the region's beauty and the resilience of its residents.

Throughout every boom and bust, The Observer has remained a constant go-to source of information for Gladstone residents.

The stories of your lives are told day by day in the pages of The Observer.

And it's our responsibility to you to ensure our newspaper continues to reflect what's happening here in our town with our readership at the heart of every decision we make.

The media industry has experienced changes of its own in recent years and as the information and communication revolution rolls on we've adapted the way we bring you the news - never before have we had some many readers joining us online.

But one thing that hasn't changed is our focus on covering what matters most in the lives of residents right here in the Gladstone region.

We're unashamedly parochial.

And that's because we live here too.

Jasmine Llewellyn, 11 and Cooper Price, 10 will both compete in this weekend's Gladstone Tennis Association competition.
Jasmine Llewellyn, 11 and Cooper Price, 10 take to the court. Matt Taylor GLA130918TENN

We ride the same real estate roller coaster, we visit the same beaches, we worry about the same power bills and celebrate the same triumphs.

We don't just barrack for the same teams, in some cases we play for them, too.

We want to know what's going on in our neighbourhoods and share it with you.

Unlike the digital giants that revolutionised access to information but have no physical presence or reporters in our communities The Observer lives in the same city, same suburbs and same streets as our readers and you can trust that it's employees always will.

In fact, we have the largest local news team serving this community of any other media organisation.

Like Tannum Sands local Tegan Annett, our deputy editor. She loves to know what's going on around town and if there's a new development application lodged it's likely she'll tell you about it first.

Reporter Matt Harris has sat through almost every council meeting during the past year.

If you were to take a stroll into the Gladstone courthouse on any given weekday, it's likely that the only reporter you'd find in the building would be Sarah Barnham.

At our regions sporting fields and weekend events, rain or shine, photographer Matt Taylor is a familiar face to many, capturing what's happening with his camera.

We were there to bring you exclusive announcements of several proposed developments including new solar farms, the $260m high-tech abattoir and the $1 billion energy and ammonia plant.

 

Northern Oil's Yarwun Advanced BioFuels Pilot Plant general manager Ben Tabulo provides a tour of Northern Oil Refinery to Simon Gatley and President and CEO of Mercurius Biorefining Inc, Karl Seck.
Northern Oil's Yarwun Advanced BioFuels Pilot Plant general manager Ben Tabulo provides a tour of Northern Oil Refinery to Simon Gatley and President and CEO of Mercurius Biorefining Inc, Karl Seck. Matt Taylor GLA130219REFI

We brought you up-to-date and comprehensive coverage of the horrific bushfires in November and December.

We celebrated the arrival of new cruise liners, bringing thousands of tourists to the region and Marley Brown Oval's first NRL game played between Manly and the Titans.

From the first day of school to year 12 formals we chronicle the happenings - good and bad, large and small - that make up the fabric of life in our port city.

We reflect the town we love.

Kay Harding, Margaret Paskevicius, Judy Ferrari, Karen Hale and Kiki Morgan of the Wartburg Rural Fire Brigade.
Kay Harding, Margaret Paskevicius, Judy Ferrari, Karen Hale and Kiki Morgan of the Wartburg Rural Fire Brigade. Matt Taylor

Gladstone's grabbed its fair share of national headlines and other media players blow in and out of town for the big events but when the dust settles you can count on us to carry on the conversation with you every day.

With an election looming there's another thing you can count on; a lot of politicians to be doing a lot of talking.

The Gladstone region is set to be a key battleground during the Federal Election.

Sure, you can follow your favourite pollie on Facebook but we'll give you more than one side of the story.

We won't tell you what to believe but you can trust us to ask the questions you want answered so you've got the information to make up your own mind.

Joan McLellan and Cameron Dingle (PICTURED), 11, are selling mangoes this week outside Rocky Glen Hotel.
Cameron Dingle, 11, with fresh mangoes grown at Mount Alma. Matt Taylor GLA171218MANGO

The process of news gathering can at times be messy because that's how news (and life) happens. Early details give way to more precise data.

But you can be sure our news will never be fake. It will never be insincere. And it will never be contrary to what we know at the time.

We'll provide you with as much information as we can so you know where you stand and you can trust that we'll stand up for you.

We believe Gladstone's worth fighting for.

We're for you.

Megan Sheehan, Editor