Eden Prairie Local News (EPLN) is gearing up for its Third Annual Meeting on Monday, Oct. 16. Over the past three years, EPLN has posted more than 2,200 articles, and the momentum shows no sign of slowing.
The meeting will occur from 9 to 10 a.m. at the Eden Prairie City Center, 8080 Mitchell Road, in the downstairs Heritage Rooms.
On the agenda is the organization’s Annual Report, which outlines the key achievements of the nonpartisan, nonprofit news website over the last year. EPLN is devoted to sharing the stories, news, and events that shape Eden Prairie.
Ken Stone, a two-time Emmy Award-winning journalist with 40 years in radio and television, will be the keynote speaker. A former faculty member at the University of Minnesota’s Journalism School, Stone will discuss artificial intelligence (AI) in journalism. The talk will end with a Q&A session. Stone is also on the EPLN Journalism Standards and Ethics Committee.
Community members are invited to join the board of directors and volunteers of EPLN on Oct. 16 to learn more about the organization’s commitment to hyperlocal, unbiased reporting in the community.
Nancy Tyra-Lukens, chair of the EPLN board of directors, said the organization is concerned about the development of AI and its impact on news reporting.
“We see opportunity but are also concerned about possible negative aspects of AI use in local journalism,” Tyra-Lukens said. “We hope that our attention to the issue will prepare us to address AI when we feel its impacts. We have a very experienced journalist and educator (Ken Stone) discussing the topic for us at our Third Annual Meeting on Oct. 16.”
This event will feature a panel of experts exploring the local implications of AI on the community. It’s scheduled for 5 to 6:30 p.m. at the Performing Arts Center, Central Middle School, 8025 School Road, Eden Prairie. Tickets are $10.
During the Oct. 16 annual meeting, the EPLN board of directors will stress the organization’s pressing need for more volunteers to keep the effort going.
“Judging from the story ideas and news tips submitted, our readers believe we have a bigger staff than we actually do,” said EPLN Publisher and CEO Steve Schewe. “Come to the annual meeting if you’re curious about how our mostly volunteer organization punches above its weight, and discover how you can volunteer or contribute to sustain EPLN’s service to Eden Prairie!”
Tyra-Lukens, the former longtime Eden Prairie mayor, said starting up a nonprofit online news “paper” requires much more skills than she would have suspected.
She noted that EPLN requires editors and writers, but there’s also a need for a wide range of additional skills.
“We rely on donations, ad sales and grants, so we need help with designing fundraising campaigns, selling ad space and grant writing,” she said. “We also need people who can help with the business accounting and financial recording. We need marketers who can help us increase our visibility in the community.”
As chair of the board, Tyra-Lukens said she doesn’t have a journalism background. But, “I am able to bring to the table the ability to run a meeting, set an agenda and develop governance policies for the organization,” she said. “So it really takes all kinds of skills to run the organization.”
EPLN is especially looking for volunteers who can help tap into segments of the community that are currently not represented on the board.
“We especially need younger adults who share our passion for the importance of nonpartisan local news in Eden Prairie,” she said.
We offer several ways for our readers to provide feedback. Your comments are welcome on our social media posts (Facebook, X, Instagram, Threads, and LinkedIn). We also encourage Letters to the Editor; submission guidelines can be found on our Contact Us page. If you believe this story has an error or you would like to get in touch with the author, please connect with us.