Exactly five years ago, on December 5, 2008, I met with Bill Johnson, publisher of the Palo Alto Weekly and Pleasanton Weekly about turning over the San Ramon Observer name and website to his company, Embarcadero Publishing. Gina Channel Allen joined us in the meeting since she Published Embarcadero's East Bay Weeklies in Pleasanton and Danville.
Johnson and Allen were both interested in giving me blog space in a new online newspaper, "The San Ramon Express." The Danville and Pleasanton Weeklies were printed, but also had websites. Pleasanton still has a printed weekly newspaper, but Danville and San Ramon are completely online now.
I started writing my San Ramon Observer blog in April 2009. I was doubling as a reporter and actually wrote more news stories back then than blogs. I really wanted to write more blogs, so I could give my opinions on events and not just describe what happened.
In 2010 Jessica Lipsky took over as Editor of the San Ramon and Danville Expresses and I started writing my blogs twice a week. I try to cover what is happening in San Ramon, but I also write about other Tri-Valley cities and agencies.
As my readers know, I regularly write about the Dublin San Ramon Services District (DSRSD), which provides water and sewer services to Dublin, San Ramon, and Pleasanton. I even ran for Director of the District in 2004 and 2010, but lost both times.
More recently I've supported the Zone 7 Water Agency's attempt to separate itself from Alameda County so it could work across County lines in Contra Costa County. Zone 7 supplies the water DSRSD distributes in Dougherty Valley, but residents of Dougherty Valley cannot vote for Zone 7 Directors.
The Tri-Valley cities of Danville, San Ramon, Dublin, Pleasanton, and Livermore are intertwined in many ways, despite being in two different Counties. Residents of neighboring cities may work in Bishop Ranch just as residents of San Ramon may work in Hacienda Business Park. It's good to get some cross pollination of ideas throughout the Tri-Valley.
Our digital newspapers were given a face lift about a month ago and all of the other bloggers could automatically post in all of the other sites. I asked Gina Allen if I could be published in the other online news sites and she thought it was a good idea. That's why the San Ramon Observer is now appearing in the online Pleasanton Weekly, TriValley Views, and the Danville Express.
I'm not sure if I will keep the name San Ramon Observer in all of the other sites or just in the San Ramon Express, but I would like to write what is of interest to residents of Pleasanton, Danville, and Dublin. If any of you have something specific you would like me to tackle, please let me know.