Honeycutts to become 10th owners since 1895
D’Anna and Jamey Honeycutt (left) are the new owners of The Clinton County Leader, purchasing the publication (and its shopper, The Paper) from Steve and Sue Tinnen. The Tinnen family has owned The Leader since 1969, first by the late Skip and Franc E. Tinnen, then by Steve and Sue beginning in 2001. Both Jamey and D’Anna have spent their working lives in the newspaper industry.
Honeycutts ready to operate a family-owned newspaper
For the first time in a half-century, a new family has taken ownership of The Clinton County Leader.
Jamey and D’Anna Honeycutt have purchased The Leader, and its shopper publication, The Paper, from Steve and Sue Tinnen, effective Saturday, May 1. The Honeycutts are the 10th owners in the newspaper’s history, dating back to its founding in 1895.
“There’s not going to be a lot of change in how this newspaper operates and its core values,” said Jamey Honeycutt. “We want to take what the Tinnens have done, Steve and his dad, Skip, and we want to continue that. It’s a shame that a lot of communities are losing their papers. It doesn’t have to be that way. And we want to ensure that’s not how it’s going to be for Clinton County.”
The purchase represents a homecoming of sorts for the Honeycutts. D’Anna lived in Cameron, Mo. from 1998 to 2017 and worked at the newspaper there from 2004 to 2011, serving in multiple capacities, including reporter, editor, general manager, sales manager and publisher. Jamey was the publisher of the Cameron newspaper and The Shopper from 2001 to 2010.
After working with corporate-owned newspapers throughout Missouri, the Honeycutts look forward to determining their own fate with a family-owned publication.
“We are so excited to foster that community partnership and to be a part of the community legitimately,” said D’Anna. “Papers aren’t dying. They’re not. When they’re run correctly and they’re truly a part of their community and we’re watching businesses grow and reporting the news from the community... Nobody gives them that micro-coverage like their community paper. We are so excited to come home and be a part of what we believe in.”
A native of Hope, Arkansas, Jamey graduated high school in 1990 and went on to graduate from Henderson State. He’s spent 30 years in the newspaper industry, starting when he was just 18 years old. D’Anna is originally from Kansas City, Kansas, where she graduated from Kansas City Kansas Community College. Both went on to choose Cameron and Clinton County to live, work and raise their families.
The Tinnen family’s long tenure in the newspaper industry began in 1969 when the late Skip and Franc E. Tinnen purchased The Plattsburg Leader from John and Helen Biggerstaff (the former having started working for The Leader in 1913). The Tinnen family’s business legacy in Plattsburg predate’s its newspaper ownership, as H.O. Tinnen operated a Ford dealership downtown beginning in 1935.
The family has taken pride in serving the readers and advertisers of Clinton County, which continued under Steve Tinnen’s tenure as publisher, which began in 2001. Since 2010, The Leader has won more than 100 awards from the Missouri Press Association for its community coverage, including two top awards for General Excellence and two Gold Medal awards as the best small-town weekly newspaper in the state.
“I’ve been truly blessed to have spent the last 40 years of my life in the honored newspaper profession right here in Plattsburg,” said Tinnen. “Another blessing is the desire of Jamey and D’Anna Honeycutt to become owners and publishers of The Clinton County Leader and The Paper. For many years, they have used their talents for newspaper publishing for corporate owners. They’ve made a decision to use those significant talents to work for themselves. The Honeycutts will bring that passion and expertise to the communities we serve. When joined with the current staff, they will continue to cover Clinton County like dew.”
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