The Hudson Valley Press is the first and only minority newspaper that gives coverage to Orange, Dutchess, Westchester, Rockland, and Ulster Counties. While primarily targeting the African American and Latino community, the weekly Hudson Valley Press promotes unification among all races and celebrates diversity.
Initially named The Hudson Valley Black Press, the newspaper was first published in Newburgh, New York on November 24, 1983. Prior to being the sole owner of this publication, Chuck Stewart, Sr. managed radio stations WSPK (K-104) and WGNY and often noticed a void in the media’s coverage of the African American community. He wanted African Americans to have a newspaper that would provide them with information relating to their culture, history, and community; the result was The Hudson Valley Black Press.
After the first issue, Stewart sought out a partner to finance and own the paper with, but had no such luck. Many people did not think a Black newspaper was a wise investment, and experts predicted The Hudson Valley Black Press would not survive longer than 6 months. In November of 2017, the paper will celebrate its 35th year.
Starting out as a monthly publication, The Hudson Valley Black Press soon became a biweekly paper after getting a positive response. In the second quarter of 1984, it turned weekly which it remains today.
As times have changed and society has evolved, so too has The Hudson Valley Black Press. Living in a more diverse and unified climate than at the time of the newspaper’s birth, Stewart decided to drop “Black” from the title, and on September 11th, 2001, he renamed it The Hudson Valley Press. While the goal of educating the public on the Black community remains the same, the new name allows for a broader range of reader who may have mistaken the former name for including African Americans only. The paper continues to promote different races working together harmoniously as well as other positive acts in the community.
The Hudson Valley Press and Executive Editor and Publisher Chuck Stewart, Sr. have received numerous awards and acknowledgments for having a positive impact on the community. Some of these achievement awards include the City Manager’s Award, the Black Prestige Award, the Harambee Reconciliation Award, the NFA Service Award, the Poughkeepsie Unification Award, as well as selection for honoree on several occasions.