The colorado Press Association has plenty of

History

The Colorado Press Association has been working for the newspapers of Colorado for over a century. Founded in 1878, CPA has evolved from a fraternity to an organization with over 150 members. 

CPA

Our Past

We are champions for Colorado Press

Originally, CPA was a gentlemen’s club working to advance the business interests of its members and cultivate social relationships between publishers, editors and writers. Initially, it was not focused on legal issues or professional development, as it is today. Though the beginnings were not entirely resolute and they encountered difficult obstacles such as low member participation and the silver crash in the late 1800s, CPA quickly changed course and worked to become the instrumental organization it is today. 

In 1900, CPA created its first paper, an official monthly called “The Colorado Press,” which eventually became known as “The Colorado Editor.”

In 1922 CPA elected Edwin Bemis, publisher of the Littleton Independent, as its president. His efforts framed the future of CPA. He spent most of his time traveling the state, visiting publishers. He convinced them they should use advertisements to pay for their papers, created the Colorado Press Clipping Service, launched the first CPA contest, lead legal battles on behalf of state newspapers, ran an ethics column that tackled questions about libel and race and made it the responsibility of the press association to distribute press credentials, taking the power away from the secretary of state. After Bemis retired in 1951, CPA went on to maintain his improvements and modifications. Over the years, the journalism environment has changed, but the press association remains constant. 

Today, the Colorado Press Association continues to serve the state’s news media outlets. Along with upholding the good work of past presidents, in the ever-changing media landscape, CPA evolves to champion media rights, press freedoms and professional development across the state. 

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