The Cornwall Free News Turns Three Years Old Today! Our Thanks and Tribute by Jamie Gilcig – February 9, 2012

CFN –  My gosh time flies.     Today The Cornwall Free News turned 3!   Stunning.   I’ve been overwhelmed the last two days by phone calls, emails, and facebook messages.   I even read a few Twitter tributes.

We are by far the most widely read news site in Cornwall.  Most loved; most hated; most trusted; most typos  🙂

Even while writing this I am getting communicated with.  I get over 400 messages a day now as news and information floods our desk.

First off I want to thank a ton of people.   I want to thank my minority shareholder who as a client fell in love with the “Little Online Newspaper that could” Mr. Reg Coffey and his wife Kathy who have made some very dark days survivable.

I want to thank my Ex Wife to be Lea Anne who soldiered through almost three years; even on those days when she complained that it didn’t bring in enough money; and thought people would come to our home and “get me”.

I want to thank so many people.   Our contributors from writers like Richard Komorowski to people that email in photos and video like Calvin Hanson.

Our sponsors.   Folks no matter what there would be no CFN without our gorgeous sponsors who not only have financially contributed, but have endured some slings and arrows from the petty people the sadly inhabit the world and this city.

I even want to thank the haters and the Vienna Sausage Clique whose negativity fuels some of our traffic, and gives me some fun material to write about.

I want to thank Chris Savard (fired to start a competing news hub) and Kevin Lamoureux who have helped make sure that CFN works when you need it to and look its best.

This item is the 5,028th on the Cornwall Free News which averages nearly 5 items per day.   We have shot nearly 1,000 video clips; nearly 4,000 photos, and over 100 episodes of Radio on our sister site Seaway Radio.  And of course you have spoken; sharing nearly 15,000 comments with our viewers.

There have been so many good times and special moments for me personally over these past three years.

There have been some sad ones too.   I’m sad that certain politicians are so completely unprofessional. I’m sad that some of the other media in this city seem to have the integrity and standards of swamp rats.

I’m saddened that our Chamber of Commerce and Team Cornwall are disconnected from the people of our city to the point that they are.

But again, that gives us all a chance to have a great starting point to make things better.

One of the reasons I persevere, and don’t either take a gig in another city or move CFN is because of the people I’ve met here who aren’t part of the cliques and just try and live their lives like most people do.

I care about Healthcare.  I care about how Cornwall is perceived.  I don’t like when people question why I live here when I’ve lived in places like Los Angeles, Montreal, Toronto, Ottawa, and even for a short while Vancouver.   I don’t want to be anywhere else, and I want to be a part of the true revitalization of this amazing city.

The Cornwall Free News gives me and those that take advantage of it that opportunity, and as our new slogan “INTENSELY LOCAL”  states our focus is just that.

So yes, we will focus on corruption.  We will defend those that would not have a voice.  We will help campaign for issues that matter to the people that live and work here; the people that try to make a living running their business because this city; like the world; is all interlinked.    Our own health and happiness really is connected to that of our community.

I sent out an email inviting some of our area dignitaries to send in a note congratulating us on our 3rd birthday,not because I’m vain or need a pat on the back.  The real pat on the back goes to our community that really made this possible.  And that something like The Cornwall Free News could become a success in Cornwall Ontario.  Sadly our MP, MPP, the Mayor, and most of council did not respond.

Like my friend that once had to protect President Bush once told me even though he wasn’t a fan  “It’s the Office of the President; that’s what I had to protect; not the man.”

My friend is right.   Sometimes you have to do what’s right because that’s your job and that’s what’s right to do.

Kudos to councilors Leslie O’Shaughnessy and Maurice Dupelle that sent in the following.


I would like to extend my congratulations to the management and staff of the Cornwall Free News during the celebration of their third Anniversary. 

Leslie O’Shaughnessy 

Hello Jamie

I would like to congratulate you and the Cornwall Freenews on your 3rd Anniversary. I would like to comment as a Councillor with the City of Cornwall and whom sits on many committees. I would like to extend my graditude to you for all the coverage you provide to the various committees and always willing to promote any event that may be happening in our Community.

Wishing you all the best for many more years!!!!!

Councillor Maurice Dupelle

Thanks to these elected officials.

I do have some exciting and amazing news to share; a birthday gift to Cornwall and our community.  I am proud to announce that SPOTLIGHT CORNWALL, our new digital magazine focusing on what makes our community magical, special, and truly a place to visit; live in, and do business in is officially moving forward for a Spring release!

More on that to come.    We have a lot of stuff brewing which we’ll be releasing this year.   2012 is going to be magical!

As I look  back at some of our early stories I’m laughing at how far we’ve come; from my own writing skills to some of the numbers.

In April 2009 I was excited to announce that we’d achieved as many viewers in a month as we get in a day now!

From the Cotton Mill fire; to Lift Off; to three elections that we’ve covered; to local restaurant reviews and events around the town.

It’s been a total blast; and we couldn’t have done it with out any of you.

Lastly I want to give tribute to a member of the CFN family that passed away this year; Mr. Joe Gunn.   Joe was very special in the history of the Cornwall Free News.  I miss his counsel.  I miss his advice and understanding on this town, and the lessons he shared with me that I still practice.

His contributions to our Political Round Table show could never be replaced.   Thank you “Gunner”

And thank you again to everyone that has made this all possible.  Thank you so much,

Jamie Gilcig – Proud Editor of The Cornwall Free News and Proud Resident of Cornwall Ontario



  1. Congratulations Jamie, three years is fantastic! May the Cornwall Free News never be silenced. Please keep us informed!

  2. Jamie,
    Continue on your course, the “sleeping citizens” of Cornwall are beginning to wake up from their slumber and shout “We wont take this anymore”. “We demand a voice in our future”.
    Happy birthday CFN, and Jamie, Keep our light of hope burning!

  3. Wishing you a fantastic journey forward in your 4th year. Look forward to your new electronic magazine addition “Spotlight Cornwall”.

  4. Jamie and CFN,

    Congratulations on your 3rd birthday celebration.

    It’s been a pleasure for me to share some of my photography with the CFN readers for the “Photo Of The Day.”

    The CFN has openly encouraged readers to take part, whether it is to submit news or views or photographs.

    It is always very nice to see a “Cornwallite” such as yourself and CFN embark on a path they believe in, and not only achieve their goals but strive to continue toward even more achievements down the road, especially when that path tries hard to include and invigorate as many people in Cornwall and the area that may wish to jump on board and participate.

    What a great feeling of being included! Thank you.

    Enjoy your special day of celebration.

  5. Congratulations Jamie. Despite our harsh words and falling out, I hope you and CFN continue to mature and grow and carry on being a positive force for the community.

  6. Way to go, Jamie! You and CFN have survived the good times and the not so good times for three years now, and have done much to bring to the fore the real issues surrounding Cornwall and Canada. You’ve attracted some excellent (though definitely under-paid) contributors such as Keith Beardsley, Jacqueline Milner, Tabatha Pilon (we need to find a way to keep her in Denmark), and recently, Stéphane Groulx.

    I’m not sure I would have had the energy or a thick enough skin to have accomplished what you have. Let’s see what the next three years brings for us all.

  7. I too want to congratulate you Jamie, for remaining open minded and to continuing to fight the fight.

  8. Author

    Thanks to everyone who’s posted, called, emailed, facebooked, and sent in their messages of congrats!

  9. “I sent out an email inviting some of our area dignitaries to send in a note congratulating us on our 3rd birthday..”, Really… you had to send an e-mail to area dignitaries to get a congratulations…. That is sad… It makes you look pathetic… It is sad that this site is still going, and I am glad to see that many of your ex sponsors realized how bad of a decision it was to ever be apart of this site. With the way you attack hard working volunteers of Cornwall’s biggest events to your childish rants when someone disputes your questionable facts about city iniatives and activities, you don’t deserve any congratulations from ANY member of the city or local government. I’ll give you a congratulations the day I read about Cornwall Free News shutting down.

  10. Congratulations, Jamie.

    If you and CFN have a fault, it’s that you are too tolerant of malice, spite, and illiterate comments such as Avro posts above.

  11. Author

    Thank you PJR. I am a human with faults like the rest of us. I try to do the best I can. 🙂

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