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RBC — Jeff Burkhead has been named editor of the Herald Times.
Burkhead takes over the position most recently held by Bobby Gutierrez. Gutierrez is remaining with the newspaper in a new role.
“We’re excited to have Jeff join our team,” newspaper owner Mitch Bettis said. “He understands the importance of having a strong newspaper for the community and he brings a diverse set of skills to our operation.”
Burkhead started his new job June 2.
“I am very excited to be here,” Burkhead said. “From everything I’ve heard, Rio Blanco County is a great place to live and work. I look forward to getting to know the people and places that make this area unique.”
Burkhead has been involved with small, community newspapers for more than two decades, and he and Bettis first worked together in Kansas more than 13 years ago.
“Mitch and I go way back, having worked together before, so we are very comfortable with each other and share like-minded philosophies on doing business and the role of a community newspaper,” Burkhead said. “I wish Bobby nothing but the best in his new venture. He and the rest of the staff have been terrific. I can’t say enough good things about how they have handled this transition.
“As the new guy, where even the most basic task, such as how to answer the phone, can be a challenge, I appreciate everyone’s patience. Mitch always bragged about the team of people at the paper and I can already see why. I appreciate them making me feel at home and pitching in wherever needed.”
Gutierrez’ new role with the newspaper is a familiar one. He’s returning to his first love — being a sportswriter — and will continue working with area businesses to help them market their businesses. Additionally, Gutierrez recently completed his Realtor’s license and started selling real estate in the county.
“I’m thankful to Mitch and Meg for the opportunity to serve our community as editor the past couple of years, it has been a great learning experience,” Gutierrez said. “I appreciate the relationships I have been able to create and strengthen in Meeker and Rangely. I would also like to thank our readers for their patience.”
Bettis said Gutierrez has done a tremendous job as editor.
“Bobby has been a terrific asset to the paper for almost a decade,” Bettis said. “I’ve relied on his counsel for many years, and we are very excited he’s remaining a key part of our team.”
Burkhead is in the process of meeting people throughout the county. However, if you’d like to say hello or offer kudos or concerns regarding the newspaper, he can be reached at (970) 675-5033, (970) 878-4017 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.