Humboldt Newspapers has new owners


Humboldt Newspapers has been sold. Jim Gargano (center), Publisher of Humboldt Newspapers since 1985, has announced the sale of the business to two of his children, Jaime Zweibohmer (left) and Jeff Gargano (right). Humboldt Newspapers is Humboldt’s longest continuous business dating back to 1860.

Jim Gargano, publisher of Humboldt Newspapers, has announced the sale of the business to two of his children, Jeff Gargano and Jaime Zweibohmer. The transition will take place June 1.
Jim Gargano will remain with the business on part-time basis with the title of Publisher Emeritus. Jim and Rosie Gargano purchased the Humboldt Independent Newspaper on March 1, 1985, and the Humboldt Reminder in June of 1992. Rosie worked in the family business for many years. He launched the very popular Humboldt NOW magazine in 2010. His newspaper career has spanned 38 years, including publishing the Belmond Independent from 1979 until 1986.
Jim Gargano is a graduate of Creighton University where he obtained a BA degree in journalism. Prior to starting in the newspaper business, Gargano worked in public relations including from 1970-79 as public relations director at Corn Belt Power Cooperative in Humboldt. Before that he worked for Eli Lilly/Elanco, Land O’Lakes and Fort Dodge Laboratories.
In 2015, he was awarded the Master Editor-Publisher Award from the Iowa Newspaper Association.
“Our publications are people oriented and focused on all of the positive things going on in Humboldt County. The businesses have supported our publications because they get results. When people can’t wait to see our publications you know you’re doing something right,” Jim Gargano said.
Gargano said he’s pleased his children will continue the tradition of providing excellent media products for the Humboldt County area.
“Jeff and Jaime bring a wealth of experience. They are active in the community and well thought of. They will do a great job of continuing to lead our community’s leading media organization,” Jim Gargano said.
Jim and his wife, Rosie, will continue to make their home in Humboldt. They have two other children. Brian lives in Humboldt and is employed at EFM. Rick is a resident of Opportunity Village in Clear Lake.
Jaime Zweibohmer will serve as Advertising Director and General Manager. Jeff Gargano will serve as Managing Editor and Chief Financial Officer. Jeff and Jaime will share the Publisher duties.
Jaime is a 1994 graduate of Humboldt High School. She obtained a degree in advertising with an emphasis in marketing from Iowa State University in 1998. She later obtained a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Iowa.
After college, Jaime worked at an ad agency in Des Moines as a media buyer, and then as a sales executive for the Iowa Newspaper Association, and the Des Moines Business Record.
In July of 2004, Jaime returned to Humboldt as sales manager at Humboldt Newspapers. Her husband, Jake, is employed by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) as the Art Director of the Iowa Outdoors magazine.
The couple has two children: Gus, a sixth grader, and Meg, a fourth grader, both at St. Mary School in Humboldt.
Jake and Jaime organize an annual bike ride on the Three Rivers Trail called the Humboldt County Hardpack 30. The event raises money for trail improvements. This year’s ride will be Sept. 23. Jaime serves on the board of the Humboldt Area Arts Council, has been active with the Bringing Back the Avenue downtown group and is on the marketing committee of the Iowa Newspaper Association. She is also a graduate of the Humboldt County Leadership program. Jake and Jaime are members of St. Mary’s Church in Humboldt.
“Humboldt is a wonderful community. Jake and I have never regretted the decision we made to raise our family here. The people here are what make the community great and I have personally enjoyed working with many local business owners to market their businesses. And it’s fun because when they advertise in our papers they get results,” Jaime Zweibohmer said.
Jeff Gargano moved from Humboldt in 1979 when his parents purchased the newspaper in Belmond. Two years later he graduated from Belmond High School and then went to Iowa State University where he obtained a degree in journalism and a minor in marketing. His newspaper career started in 1979 in Belmond where his father taught him how to write stories and a few years later he had an award winning story on a K-9 deputy with the Wright County Sheriff’s Department.
During Jeff’s last semester of college, he attended classes and also started work at the Humboldt Independent on Feb. 15, 1985, where he’s been ever since.
Jeff’s wife, Tricia, is employed as a kindergarten/first grade teacher at Twin Rivers Elementary School in Bode. The couple has six children: Michael, a software engineering major at Iowa State University; Austen, a business major at Iowa State University; Abbey, a business major at Arizona State University; and Jayden, Ty and Tori, sixth graders at Humboldt Middle School.
Jeff is currently a member of the Humboldt Rotary Club and a past president. He’s a member of the Humboldt Athletic Booster Board and a past president. He’s also been active in coaching his children’s activities. Jeff is a past member of the Humboldt-Dakota City Jaycees, where he served as president. He has also served on board of the Humboldt-Dakota City Chamber of Commerce, and just recently completed eight years on the board of directors for Opportunity Village in Clear Lake.
“The people of Humboldt County are some of the best people you’ll ever meet. I’ve been asked if we will ever run out of feature stories to do on people. And my answer is ‘everyone has a story to tell.’ The people of Humboldt County want a good newspaper and they’re willing to support it. We plan to continue to provide top notch publications,” Jeff Gargano said.
Humboldt Newspapers operates under the corporate name of Gargano Communications, Inc.
The Humboldt Independent Newspaper goes out to about 3,000 print and digital subscribers each Thursday.
The Humboldt Reminder, a free shopper publication, goes out to more than 12,000 each Wednesday.
The Humboldt NOW magazine goes out to more than 4,000 each month.
In addition, Humboldt Newspapers does a large volume of job printing of newsletters, letterhead, brochures, envelopes, forms, and even publishes books.
Humboldt Newspapers has evolved into a total media provider embracing the growth of social media and helping customers reach their target audience through a variety of options.
Humboldt Newspapers employs 11 dedicated people, many of whom are long-time employees.
“Our staff has been so dedicated to bringing the Humboldt County area the best in news and advertising. They often work long hours covering all the events that our busy county holds. And I think people appreciate that effort and dedication and that’s one reason people don’t hesitate in renewing their subscriptions,” Jim Gargano said.
The newspaper is probably the longest running business in Humboldt, starting in 1860. The Jaqua family published the newspaper from 1893 until 1964. From 1964 until 1980, the publisher was Chase McLaughlin. Del Marks was publisher from 1980-85.
The Humboldt Reminder was started in 1932. Jeff Gargano and Jaime Zweibohmer become just the sixth owners of the Reminder.
For more information on subscribing or just general information on the community, people can go to Humboldt’s most visited website, www.humboldtnews.com.

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