Compiled by Eric Lubbers,
CTO/Newsletter Wrangler, @brofax

We did it, folks. Though we didn’t have much choice in the matter, all 364 days of 2018 so far lasted exactly 24 hours (give or take a tenth of a millisecond) each and then ended right on time. And the forecast is that day 365 is on track to continue that streak.

To say 2018 was a big year feels inadequate. Just over 100 days ago, we launched The Sun. And just a little more than seven months ago, I quit what was my dream job to join with my colleagues to try to do something to fight back against the slow dismantling of local journalism.

The fact that I’m still sitting here, writing newsletters and planning for the future is a testament to the way that Colorado has stood up in support for news that puts readers first. And I can’t thank you all enough.

Today’s Sunriser will be a little shorter than usual, but we’ll be back at full power on Wednesday.

Let’s spin this noisemaker, shall we?

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After unseating Wayne Williams, Jena Griswold takes office with sights set on dark money reforms

“I think reform is what the people of Colorado want. In a democracy we do need transparency.”

Jena Griswold, incoming Colorado Secretary of State

The Center for Public Integrity has given Colorado a “D” grade for its campaign finance system for the last three years, citing things like a reliance on citizen complaints instead of active enforcement, lack of funding disclosure on mailings and the ability for millions of dollars of super PAC money to go untraced. As Sandra Fish writes, incoming Secretary of State Jena Griswold has made this reform her No. 1 priority.

>> Read more about Griswold’s plans — and how the Democratic majority at the Capitol will help.

Jason Blevins talks to Angela Hawse about women taking charge in the outdoor industry

Veteran mountain guide Angela Hawse’s Chicks Climbing and Skiing outfitter in Ridgway turns 20 next year. (Photo courtesy Angela Hawse)

“A business owner, veteran guide, educator and pioneer for women in the outdoor industry, Angela Hawse is an alpine boss.” That’s how Jason Blevins introduces Angela Hawse in his interview with the long-time guide and now the first woman to lead the American Mountain Guides Association as president. If you care at all about the future of the outdoor industry and women’s role as it goes forward, you’re going to want to click through.

>> Read the entire interview here.


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From the Opinion Page

Editor’s note: We’re always looking for more diverse voices for our opinion page. Email if you have a column idea or suggestions.

This is the best Colorado journalism of 2018

One of the guiding principles when we founded The Colorado Sun was to boost good journalism in our state. “Complement is the new compete,” is a motto we’re still sticking to, because journalism is essential for democracy and we need as many talented journalists as we can get covering our state.

So rather than just drop a list of our own stories in our year-end wrap-up, John Ingold compiled a list of 64 of the best long-form Colorado stories of the year that includes stories from The Sun, but also outlets big and small from around the state (and beyond). No matter how much of a news junkie you are, you’re bound to find something in this list you’ll be glad you read.

It’s truly a celebration of Colorado’s diverse journalism offerings, from the hard-working journalists at outlets like the Durango Herald and PULP magazine in Pueblo to Colorado Public Radio podcasts to major investigations by The Denver Post and High Country News. There’s even a really good Twitter thread in the bunch!

And, if you know of great Colorado-centric pieces we missed, give us a shout, and we’ll update the list.

>> Click here to peruse the whole list, or use the links below to jump right to a section that catches your eye.

Insights | Environments | Reckonings | Campaigns | Investigations | Interventions | Castoffs | Profiles | Interviews | Embeds | Monologues | Miscellanies

That’s it for today (and for 2018)! We’ve got some exciting things planned for the new year that we can’t wait to tell you about. So have a safe, fun New Year’s Eve, and we’ll see you on the other side!


Eric Lubbers is one of the co-founders of The Colorado Sun, focused on making technology work hand-in-hand with journalism. He was born and raised in Yuma, Colorado, and since starting his career with the Rocky Mountain News/YourHub in 2005...