Current Village Voice of Ottawa Hills co-editors, Bassett (l) and Kuk (r).
In 1973 Mary Morris and Lynn Rubini, a pair of Villagers frustrated by the lack of coverage of Village news in the local media, decided to start an independent community newspaper to meet the needs of the residents of the Village of Ottawa Hills. The first issue of The Village Voice of Ottawa Hills, all four pages of it, arrived in May, 1974.
The paper struggled through 11 more issues, ranging from four to six pages, until May, 1975, when Rubini took a full-time job and was unable to continue working on the publication. With the apparent demise of The Voice at hand, one of Rubini’s friends, Hadley Miller, called a sharp young woman he knew, Sharon F. Simmons.
Simmons responded to Miller’s plea for assistance, and soon met with Rubini. At their first meeting Simmons was presented with a large box. It contained all of the files and records of the newspaper. She was now the editor/publisher of the Village Voice.
In September 1975 Simmons and then-associate editor Russ Galbraith produced their first issue of the paper. The paper grew, with the first 16-page edition coming in 1980. Over the years, Simmons, with the aid of Ron L. Coffman, who joined the staff in the early 1980s as associate editor, grew the paper to an average of 32 pages a month.
After a stint of 30 years as editor and publisher, in January 2005 Simmons sold the newspaper to Village Voice Publishing, Ltd., an Ohio Limited Liability Company created by business partners and Village residents Yarko Kuk and Tony Bassett.
Since the purchase, the paper has continued to evolve with Kuk and Bassett serving as co-editors. The first digitally-produced edition rolled off the presses in March 2005. In April 2005 the use of spot color returned (it had only been used once before, in September 2000, to mark the 25th anniversary of the paper’s continuous publication).
The publishers introduced the use of four-color in July, 2005. The paper launched a website in March, 2006.