California Group under new management
The California Group (Associated Desert Newspaper/Shoppers) has experienced a change in management.  With the changed management comes a new direction.  
    The California Group is comprised of Imperial Valley Press (10,500 circulation daily), Adelante Valle (10,000 circulation Spanish Weekly), The White and The Green Sheets (10 weekly shoppers with a total of 275,000 readers in three states) and Valley Women, among other periodical publications and special editions.
    “We have all the elements for success: great people, great products and growing markets,” said Gerard Delaney, the new group publisher. “My first priority is to focus on the newspaper side of the business. It has been too long without strong leadership and direction.”
    Gerard is joining Schurz from the Cox Media group in Atlanta. “We are fortunate to have a strong management team in place in the Shopper division that will allow me to focus initially on the newspaper,” he continued. “But I will be traveling to the various offices and getting involved there as well.”
    To fill a critical position that has been vacant for the last eight months, the IV Press has recruited Jorge Barria as Director of Sales and Marketing.
    Although Jorge is joining IV Press from Perfect-10 Satellite in Little Rock, Arkansas, he and Gerard worked together in the Atlanta Journal Constitution where Jorge was the Lead Corporate Advertising Sales and Product Trainer and Gerard was General Manager of Mundo Hispanico, one of the nation’s leading Hispanic newspapers.
     “I am thrilled that Gerard reached out to me to help him with this exciting and challenging opportunity,” Barria said. “I am confident that as a team we will be able to not only meet, but exceed the expectations of both, the community of Imperial Valley, as well as those of SCI.”
    “I am excited to work with Jorge again,” Delaney commented. “I know him to be a great leader, team builder and trainer all of which we urgently need.”
    One of the first projects they will undertake is to revamp Adelante Valle. The Imperial Valley is more than 80 percent Hispanic.
    “It only makes sense that we focus our energies on the dynamic growth market,” Delaney said.
    Adelante Valle will soon be celebrating its 10th anniversary and the team is taking advantage of that to reposition the product in the market. It is currently distributed in the English language daily on Fridays so has minimal exposure. Adelante will be taken out of the IV Press and have free rack distribution at 200 distribution points throughout Imperial Valley as well as hawking on the international border with Mexico. This, with strong marketing support. will put the product top of mind in the Hispanic community on both sides of the US/Mexico border.
     “The IV Press is the core product of the Newspaper Group and will not be neglected,” Delaney emphasized. “There is a lot of work going on to improve all aspects of the paper-- improve editorial, grow circulation and spur sales. Everything is being scrutinized to see what can be done better. The entire company has been encouraged to get involved in the community by volunteering, attending events, joining social clubs and generally being visible and approachable.
       “We have gotten a reputation in the Valley of being difficult to work with,” Delaney added. “That ends now.”