Longtime area journalist Matt Hughes has been named editor of The Messenger, Publisher Mike Alexieff announced Friday. Hughes replaces Jon Garrett, who resigned after leading the paper for the past two and a half years.

Hughes has been editor and general manager of The Journal-Enterprise in Webster County for the past nine years. He spent three years at the paper covering sports before attending Kentucky Wesleyan College in Owensboro. After college he worked for five years in radio as a DJ, producer and sports director. He spent a few years out of journalism, including a stint in the coal industry, before rejoining The Journal-Enterprise.

“Matt is a seasoned journalist who knows the job and the area,” Alexieff said. “I’m confident he will continue The Messenger’s tradition of watchdog reporting while celebrating our community’s successes.”

Hughes believes the number one priority of any news agency should always be to inform the public.

“Journalism, to me, is ultimately a community service,” he said. “As the local newspaper, we know how to access people and information. It’s our job to take that information and what we learn from those sources and share it with the people of Hopkins County. It doesn’t matter if that story is about a fall festival going on at the city park or some wrongdoing by an elected official. The public has a right to be informed, and we have responsibility to inform them.”

Hughes, a native of Providence, has called Madisonville home since marrying his wife Shanda in 2006. The two have one child, a daughter named Aleigha who is currently in middle school.

Hughes will continue to oversee the editorial operations of the Journal-Enterprise as well as the Dawson Springs Progress.

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