Konrad LaPrade named Delaware State News publisher


DOVER — The Delmarva Group of Independent Newsmedia Inc. USA welcomes Konrad LaPrade to the role of group publisher.

He takes on the position, which includes oversight of the Delaware State News and its website BaytoBayNews.com, following the retirement of his father, Darel La Prade.

Darel has been with Independent Newsmedia for more than 25 years, the last five as group publisher.

Konrad has been vice president of sales for Independent Newsmedia since 2019.

“It’s an honor to lead the Delmarva Group,” Konrad said. “I’m glad I got to spend some time with Darel before he retired. It has been a lifelong dream of mine to be a publisher, and I’m thrilled to lead these publications into the future.”

Konrad has been in the news business since graduating from Hillsdale College in 2005.

His path essentially began in his youth, when he watched his father working in newsrooms in the Outer Banks of North Carolina and in Salisbury, Maryland. As a memento of that time, he has the Outer Banks Current sign hanging in his garage.

“I have always enjoyed newspapers, loved reading them and loved the community side of things,” Konrad said.

His start in media advertising sales began in Easton, Maryland. His experience helping clients spans markets of all sizes, including Dover, Salisbury, Easton, Baltimore and Philadelphia, as well as Charlotte, North Carolina, and Albany, New York.

In 2019, he returned to Delmarva after a six-year stint as a regional vice president of sales for Gatehouse in North Carolina.

Konrad said his passion has always been for small to midsized businesses.

Over his 19 years in digital sales and management, he has grown to appreciate the changing dynamics of the industry — particularly the opportunities for growth in the digital world.

About a decade ago, he was leading sales for Digital First Media in upstate New York.

“That was the first time I really worked for digitally focused newspapers,” Konrad said. “It opened up my eyes to this whole group of non-newspaper people who still wanted to know what’s going on.”

Advertisers have more options now. For example, Independent Newsmedia can offer marketing buys that include Connected television, podcast commercials, email blasts and targeted impressions.

All those things help us pay for our local journalism, Konrad said.

“We believe the print products will be around for a long time, but we have this ability digitally to reach a huge part of the market — a part of the market, coincidently, that we weren’t reaching even when the newspaper was at its peak,” he said.

Konrad said he continues to be excited about the difference local news media makes in our communities.

“Konrad believes in our journalistic mission to provide nonpartisan news to our readers and affordable advertising for our business community,” said Charlene Bisson, president and CEO of Independent Newsmedia. “It’s important that we have a publisher whose values align with connecting our communities through goodwill journalism and impactful events for our advertisers.”

Darel La Prade had been in the news business for 43 years. He said he is looking forward to retirement, spending time with his family, catching up on his reading and volunteering.

“In early October, I had a serious health scare, which, by the grace of God, is now behind me, but it was a wake-up call, and my wife has reminded me every day since then that I am 70, and perhaps it is time for something new,” Darel said.

“I have been very fortunate,” he added. “When I started college in 1971, my ambition was to become a journalist — a newspaperman — and I count myself lucky that, for nearly all the time then until now, I have had a chance to live that dream. I feel as if I have made a small difference.

“I am especially grateful to INI, where I have worked for more than 25 years. The company gave me loads of opportunity to experiment, to be creative and to contribute to making our communities better places to live. I couldn’t have chosen a better company to hitch my wagon to. I leave my position happy and confident in the company’s future, especially since Konrad will be taking my place on Delmarva.”

In addition to his work for INI, Konrad LaPrade serves on the Executive Committee of the Central Delaware Chamber of Commerce. He also is a member of the Capital Rotary in Dover.

Konrad and his wife, Joy, live in Dover with their four children, Kathryn, Jonah, Elizabeth and Maryanna.

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