Lilley takes over as Ledger general manager


Nathan Lilley

The Mexico Ledger is now under new ownership and with the change comes some new faces. One of them is General Manager Nathan Lilley.

Lilley brings over 20 years experience in the media industry, having graduated from Lindenwood University’s communications program in 1997. Nathan served as editor for the Bowling Green Times for over eight years, earning Missouri Press recognition for his coverage of a tragic bus accident. He is a firm believer that a newspaper belongs to the community it serves and that partnership is the key. Overseeing much of the daily operation of the Times, he wrote hard news, features, business stories in weekly and annual special editions, sports and community stories and columns.

“I have a lot of good memories of my time there,” Lilley said. “It gave me the opportunity to write, write, and write some more. There were a lot of nights at sporting events and county events, so folks got to know me pretty well!”

He also did layout - starting with paste-up, which involved manually placing newspaper elements using wax on large sheets of paper, or “boards” - and today works in InDesign and other Adobe products.
“When I first walked into the Ledger office, I saw a lot of familiar things from my layout days,” Lilley said. “There’s still a waxer in the office - maybe I will fire it up some day.”

Lilley met the Ledger’s new owner, Tim Schmidt, while working with the Bowling Green Times. Schmidt was working at the time at the Louisiana Press-Journal. They stayed in contact after moving on, talking about possibly partnering on different newspaper and print ventures. While not an official partnership, Nathan would later introduce Schmidt to John and Donna Fischer, owners of the Montgomery Standard.

Schmidt took it from there, buying the Standard from them.

Most recently, Lilley was national sales manager for insurance print services with Swift Print Communications, St. Louis, carrying on Swift’s 80-year-plus relationship with the insurance Industry. He collaborated with over 500 insurance clients year-round and attended multiple conferences and trade shows during his five years there.

“It was a great experience,” Lilley said. “I met a lot of wonderful people and made a lot of lasting friends.”

To better serve the insurance industry Lilley published Let's Talk, Swift’s quarterly insurance industry magazine, which was direct-mailed to over 4,500 insurance professionals nationwide. It was also distributed digitally through Constant Contact.

Lilley also partnered with clients ranging from non-profits to professional sports teams to financial institutions and municipalities while at Swift, helping them with their mailings, large-format printing and collateral.

He plans to dovetail his printing experience with his other duties at the Ledger, offering print services from the Ledger office. More details will be provided in the coming days and weeks, but the public is welcome to stop by the office if they need anything.

During college, Lilley spent nights on air at 89.1, Lindenwood University’s radio station, and co-founded a cable-access music television show, spending many nights at St. Louis concert venues.
His first job out of college was as a newspaper display advertising account executive, setting then-record high sales totals.

Nathan’s interests are most things vintage and all things outdoors and good music. He has a wall of vinyl albums and CD – yes, CDs – in his home and enjoys attending concerts. He is a volunteer for the St. Louis Browns Historical Society and Fan Club, writing for the organization’s Pop Flies magazine and occasionally dressing as club mascot, Brownie.

He currently resides in Clarksville with his daughter Addison, 12, and wife, Colleen. They are rehabbing an old blacksmith shop there.

“I look forward to getting out and meeting everyone,” Lilley said. “I am excited for the new future of the Ledger and look forward to helping deliver a product the community can proudly call theirs.”

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