New Year, New Outlook: The Jewish Outlook Newspaper Reduces Print Frequency

Community News, Shalom Austin, The Jewish Outlook

Nov 24, 2020

Since 1989, The Jewish Outlook newspaper, a free publication of Shalom Austin, has delivered the newest trends in Jewish culture, local community news and events, national and international stories, important announcements, simchas, crosswords, recipes and other engaging content to a growing Jewish population in Austin and Central Texas. 

By Wendy Goodman

What started as a newsletter 30 years ago, The Jewish Outlook quickly evolved to become one of the most successful monthly Jewish community publications in the United States and the only newspaper serving the Austin Jewish community. Since 1989, The Jewish Outlook has delivered the newest trends in Jewish culture, local community news and events, national and international stories, important announcements, simchas, crosswords, recipes and other engaging content to a growing Jewish population in Austin and Central Texas.  

Beginning January 1, 2021, The Jewish Outlook, a publication of Shalom Austin, will change its print publication frequency from monthly to four issues per year.  

The first 2021 publication will be the March issue, followed by July, September and December. Home delivery of the newspaper will continue by mail to all subscribers and will be available to pick up in select Austin grocery stores and various Austin Jewish institutions. 

Shalom Austin’s Jewish Austin magazine, a popular resource guide for current Austin residents, newcomers and those considering a move to the area, will continue to be published annually in September and will now include new special sections for older adults (formerly REACH magazine) and simchas (celebrations).  

These changes also bring additional opportunities for digital readers. Shalom Austin is launching a Jewish community blog, which will be updated monthly with The Jewish Outlook local articles, national and international news, and other content. The newspaper and magazine will continue to be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week through an online publication viewer at shalomaustin.org. 

These changes were made to better position Shalom Austin’s publications as a result of the changing print media landscape, effects of COVID and the needs of the evolving community. By realigning resources and staffing, The Jewish Outlook is able to continue its core mission to deliver informative news content to readers, provide advertising platforms to businesses, and guide customers to advertisers. 

The Jewish Outlook staff members are thankful to all loyal readers and are committed to continuing this important news service to Austin’s Jewish community. 

In 1989, the first Jewish Outlook editor, Gaylon Finklea Hecker, began the publication as a newsletter printed on letter-size paper. Over the years she, Diane Dusek, who sold advertising, and Jeri Saper, Mary Jo Osgood, and Jeanine and Earl Baker, who managed production at various periods, built the publication into an award-winning newspaper with original, localized content.  

Twice The Jewish Outlook won the top Gold Award for newspapers from small Jewish cities from the Council of Jewish Federations, a national organization. 

In 2006, Jay Rubin became the CEO of Shalom Austin (then Jewish Community Association of Austin) and publisher of The Jewish Outlook until 2016. Under his leadership, The Jewish Outlook moved in-house with expanded coverage, increased distribution and revenue, new supplements, creative design and an online edition.  

Executive directors of what was then called the Jewish Federation of Austin, Wayne Silverman and Barry Silverberg, also shaped The Jewish Outlook.  

Other former staff members and contributors involved with the production and success of the newspaper include: 

  • Emily Cohen, co-publisher 

  • Wendy Corn, photographer 

  • Kim Cottin, designer 

  • Gutman Cranow, contributor 

  • Mark Kilpatrick, editor 

  • Amy Kritzer, contributor 

  • Ellie Morgan, designer 

  • Liza Schklar, designer 

  • Julie Zweig, editor 

The current Jewish Outlook staff includes: 

  • Wendy Goodman, publisher and editor-in-chief  

  • Tonyia Cone, editor  

  • Rebecca Jarosh, creative director  

  • Stefanie Klett, graphic designer  

  • Shana Creeger, corporate partnership director 

  • Mike Carranco, distribution 

Shalom Austin publications are available to pick up in the following locations, when open for business:  

  • JCC 

  • Chabad Jewish Student Center @ UT 

  • Congregation Agudas Achim 

  • Congregation Beth Israel 

  • Temple Beth Shalom 

  • Texas Hillel 

  • H-E-B (Far West, Westlake, Bee Cave & 71, and Lakeway) 

  • Randalls (2222 and Westlake) 

  • Whole Foods (Downtown and William Cannon & Mopac, Gateway and The Domain) 

  • Central Market (North and South) 

  • Walgreens near Sun City ■

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