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UPDATED April 20: YourArlington began as an experiment in community journalism dedicated to reporting news about Arlington, Mass., and the Arlington-related views of its residents. That experiment continues, but it is not unique -- it is part of a nationwide movement once called "citizen journalism."

The phrase gained currency through We the Media, a 2004 book by Dan Gillmor. This kind of journalism encourages members of a community to write about that community. The writing may be reporting, or it may be opinion.  

YourArlington Site policies

Bob Sprague, 2017Bob Sprague, an Arlington resident since 1989, is the founder, editor and publisher. He is a member of the Arlington Chamber of Commerce as well as LION Publishers, which stands for Local Independent Online News Publishers. The website is also a member of the Institute for Nonprofit News.

INN logo

On Dec. 8, 2021, the site announced a significant change: It had become a nonprofit organization, recognized by the IRS as a 501(c)(3) as eligible to receive tax-deductible contributions. 

Accordingly, YourArlington no longer seeks advertising but encourages public support through individual donations, underwriting and grants. YourArlington controls what it publishes and remains independent of those providing donations.

Donate here >>

LION Publishers

A board now guides the site, but it exercises no editorial control. Its members are Bob Sprague, president and chair; Annie LaCourt, treasurer; Jim Concannon and Susan Webber, fund-raising. Sprague remains the editor and decides what is published, but he does so in concert with Assistant Editor Judith Pfeffer, who is training to succeed him as editor. 

Several people provide advice to the board. They are Marjorie Howard, Susan Gilbert, Judith Pfeffer, David Whitford, Steve Morgan, Jillian Harvey, Joseph Curro Jr., Clarissa Rowe, Barbara Thornton, Rose Udics, Lisa Pedulla, Eric Segal, Jim Gomes, Susan Ryan-Vollmar, Jingfei Cui, Edward Blundell, Kim Haase, Cayla Kwok, Christopher Wilbur, Adam MacNeill, Larry Slotnick, Joseph Pinciaro, Renee Abbott and Frederick Kalil.


"YourArlington is a local news organization that publishes facts and opinions about Arlington, Mass. We aspire to the highest journalistic standards of accuracy, impartiality and fairness. Our aim is to bolster an engaged citizenry and so strengthen our community and democracy."

An interview with the publisher conducted by James Milan of ACMi was published Jan. 20, 2021:

The publisher encourages factual reporting, honest opinion and overall fair play. 

On this site, the public has a right to know the sources of information. Anonymous sources may be used in some cases, but when you post to this site, public should know your full name. Reach the editor at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Financial information

Find information about YourArlington's Form 990 for tax year 2021 by searching here >> Enter the organization name and state, and the legally available data comes up.

When YourArlington files taxes for tax year 2022 (by May 15, 2023), its accountant again expects to use Form 990-N. 


Writers, some serving since 2014, most of whom have received pay for their services:

Susan Gilbert reports about the Select Board, the arts and provides features.

Judith Pfeffer reports about Arlington Public Schools, health issues and is the website's assistant editor.

Emily Piper-Vallillo reports about the Select Board and related topics.

Frederick Kalil writes restaurant reviews.

Two college interns are freelance reporters: Jingfei Cui and Renee Abbott.

Cayla Kwok is the Arlington High School intern for spring 2023, succeeding Isla Jamieson, who was intern for fall 2022. High-school interns serve as unpaid volunteers on a very part time basis.

Local resident Kim Haase volunteers for layout work.

Marjorie Howard, a former reporter for the Boston Herald and the publisher's wife, provides people features and is not paid.

Previous paid reporters were Melanie Gilbert of Arlington, who covered the housing authority; as well as these student reporters -- Matty Wasserman, Northeastern student; Katie Mogg, Northeastern student; Julia Preszler, Northeastern student; Eileen O'Grady, Northeastern graduate student who now works at the Concord, N.H., Monitor; and Jo Anne Preston of Arlington, who provided features.


Some former YourArlington reporters have gone on to work at The Boston Globe and Lowell Sun.

Melanie Gilbert, general-assignment reporter

Rebecca Braun, freelance general-assignment reporter.

Aileen Maroney, a freelance feature writer.

Susie Goldman, a freelance feature writer.

Jane Dornbusch, a restaurant reviewer.  

Earlier in YourArlington's history, Linda and Uri Guttman as well as Lori Uhland were paid restaurant reviewers.

Scott Samenfeld has helped with site technology since 2006; Karen Gruber helped with the database. Both are Arlington residents and were paid for some work.

Arlington residents who helped this site as volunteers in the past are:

Barbara Goodman, a former Arlington School Committee member, and various interns from Arlington High School.

From 2007 to 2012, various advanced students from the classes of Kim Eudenbach, a journalism teacher at Arlington High School, contributed to the site.

Benn Craig, an Arlington photographer, has contributed photographs to the site in the past.

Audrey L. Jenkins was a contributing reporter in April and May 2012.

Colin Campbell submitted weekly police reports from November 2008 until September 2010.

Publisher's resume >>

Some site history

The site launched Dec. 10, 2006, as a dot-com on open-source Joomla! 

In August 2007, Google ads were added. The ability for users to post comments was added that September. A new site template was activated in October 2007.

In 2008, the OpenX online-advertising system was installed. In February 2013, the site began using Joomla's FlexBanner and Broadstreet Ads after OpenX was hacked nationwide.

On June 9, 2008, the site was incorporated by its publisher in Massachusetts.

In May 2009, Your View, a new opinion site, was added. Since 2012, the site used has EasyBlog, which continues to be upgraded. YourArlington itself is not a blog, but the site includes a blog, where opinion is published.

Since 2009, YourArlington has been a news and advertising partner with hyperlocal sites Cambridge Day, which is actively maintained, and InsideMedford (until 2018; the site is no longer maintained).

On Jan. 14, 2010, added Arlington to its Your Town links and began linking to YourArlington stories. In 2015, abandoned its hyperlocal effort, but YourArlington's connection to The Boston Globe continues.

On Sept. 8, 2012, the site upgraded to Joomla! platform 2.5, and made public a new site design. 

YourArlington moved to a new host, SiteGround, in September 2013. A revamped site template, created with Artisteer, was updated Feb. 3, 2013. A mobile template was activated March 7, 2013.

A new mobile-ready, responsive-design template was activated July 7, 2014, in concert with the Joomla platform.

In June 2016, YourArlington signed a contract to have Broadstreet Ads deliver advertising content. The New Jersey company offers more than 100 options to advertising, including an automated Facebook feed. That contract ended Sept. 1, 2021.

Since 2016, the site has used AcyMailing to deliver its weekly newsletter.

In 2018, Steve Poltorzycki, an Arlington resident who writes about what he sells -- local real estate -- began his column, Real Estate Corner.

In April 2019, a new mobile-friendly template with a revamped site logo and design friom Mitzi Gilbert of MSG Design was added. After that, the site began taking donations.

On Dec. 8, 2021, the site announced that it had become a nonprofit organization and had begun making design changes, which are continuing in 2023.

In December 2022, the site raised nearly $5,000 in a year-end fund-raising campaign.

As of Feb. 15, 2023, the site's newsletter, published every Wednesday, has 700 subscribers. To become a subscriber, at no cost, sign up using the form next to "Wednesday Newsletter."

Those who would like to help with the site should inquire. If others volunteer, the photo above could become smaller, and other photos may be added, making the site a better representation of "us."

        This account was published in December 2006 and updated most recently on April 20, 2023.