About the Messenger

Mailing Address:

PO Box 8069
Medford, OR 97501


Our Mission

Launched in 2014, the Rogue Valley Messenger started at a time when people said that newspapers are dead.

We are proud to prove them wrong.

We appreciate the interest and enthusiasm that Rogue Valley residents have expressed in what we have to say, and to write.

We see ourselves as community-builders—providing important information and insights about the people and politics, and culture and curiosity of Southern Oregon.

We strive to publish fun, smart and engaging articles, from music and food reviews, to investigative stories that ask tough questions, and consider the successes and failures of local government agencies.

We try to provide as much news, entertainment and information that we can pack into each issue, and address the many aspects that make life in southern Oregon exciting, with regular columns like:

Rogue Sounds,” a listen to local bands;

Drink Local” sampling local beers, wines and cocktails;

Public Profile,” a Q&A with civic leaders;

Go Here,” suggestions for nearby outdoor activities;

Mind Your Business,” a profile of a regional entrepreneur; and,

Art Watch,” a consideration of a gallery or artist.

And, of course, every issue hosts the region’s most comprehensive listing of events and cultural happenings, to point you in whatever direction.

We distribute our newspapers every other week throughout the Rogue Valley, from Ashland to Grants Pass, and many points in the Applegate Valley and Cave Junction, and those in-between. Click here for all of our locations.


Who We Are

Editorial Staff


Phil Busse has done his tour of duty in alt-weeklies, starting his career as the first environmental reporter for San Francisco Weekly, and covering a crime beat for Eugene Weekly while in law school at University of Oregon. He helped start up the Portland Mercury in 2000, and served for three years as the Editor for Bend Source before helping launch the Rogue Valley Messenger.


Sara Jane Wiltermood manages the Food, Wellness, Culture, Screen, and Sports & Outdoors. She also is responsible for selecting our Picks for each issue. A native from near Grants Pass, she received her B.A. in Journalism/Mass Communications from Whitworth University in Spokane, Washington, in 2007 before hustling back to southern Oregon, where she now lives on a farm with her husband and darling daughter, where they raise pigs, rabbits, chickens and goats.


Josh Gross grew up in Ashland, before attending Portland State University. He has served as a writer for Boise Weekly and Boulder Weekly. He is the author most recently of his memoir, The Funeral Papers.


Jordon Lindsey knows everything that’s going on in the region, from a regular yoga class to a once-in-a-lifetime concert. He also plays numerous instruments, some even at the same time.


Alex Sophia is wise. Both sharp-witted and sharp eyed, she manages our popular advice column, “Hey Messenger” as well as takes care of copy editing for the newspaper. She also lives in the 21st century, and manages our social media. Oh, and you might see her out delivering our newspapers, as she manages distribution for the Messenger. She is our glue!


Additional Wordsmiths


Jordan Marie Martinez An artist and writer, Jordan Martinez recently graduated from Eastern Nazarene College in the Boston area with a B.A. in Journalism and Writing, and returned to her hometown in southern Oregon.


Melissa Haskin is a food writer currently living in Southern Oregon. She recently returned after spending several years eating her way through the South and East including stints in Birmingham, Alabama where she worked at Cooking Light magazine and in Vermont, where she wrote for Seven Days.


Mike Dickenson always has a recommendation for an outdoor activity for our “Go Here” column; that is, when he isn’t leading adventure seekers on rafting and backpacking trips or on a mushroom hunt himself.

Jeanine Moy is the Outreach Director at the Klamath-Siskiyou Wildlands Center, which makes her a shoe-in for our Go Here column. Her breathtaking pictures of our region awe and inspire many to step out their front doors.

Dac Collins also serves as an outdoor guide for many, even venturing up to Alaska. And while he has lived many places, he always comes back around to the Rogue Valley, and to write for the Messenger.


Tuula Rebhahn writes from her tiny house on wheels just south of Ashland. She enjoys removing the lint from dryer screens, hosting mad tea parties for her plants, and finding nonviolent ways to fight the power. Read more of her writing at AshlandTinyHouse.wordpress.com or follow her on @Tuula11.

Hannah Jones is a senior at Southern Oregon University.

Tyrell Trimble is an intrepid photographer, a music writer and the snappiest dresser in our group.

Charles Fischman writes about life in the Rogue Valley. He plans to write a memoir about Volvo station wagons as soon as he discovers how to save humanity from itself.


Production & Business Staff


Olivia Doty


Katie Ball worked as a graphic designer with Bend Source before stepping into the role as Production Manager. An artist at heart, Katie loves to create beautiful things and be in beautiful places. She also is patient and curious, which is a great recipe for her duties as our Sales Manager.


Sara Louton with Advanced Books, is our trusted accountant. We cannot recommend her highly, or often, enough.


Tammy Wilder uses magic to turn our print paper into this modern, functional website and makes sure it’s safe from Russian hackers. 


  1. September 19, 2015 at 10:07 am — Reply

    I hope the Messenger succeeds. It’s a big challenge to sustain a quality publication in a small market.

    How about including a staff directory so that readers can contact with writers and editors? The reply filter feels like a barrier to direct communication.

  2. January 18, 2016 at 11:53 pm — Reply

    Big thank you for the article on me and my book, 4 Seasons in 4 Weeks! Greatly appreciated. Nice job, Sara Jane!

    I am interested in knowing more about your local marketing services when they are ready.

  3. Denise
    September 4, 2016 at 12:50 pm — Reply

    Can you tell me specifically where in the Grants Pass area I can pick up a copy of The Messenger? I got my first copy at the THC Fair & found it very refreshing from our usual choices of news media around here. However, I don’t know where I can get future copies. Thanks for your time!!

  4. October 20, 2017 at 10:36 pm — Reply

    What a great newspaper! Thanks so much for the wonderful article on our new restaurant. I love how well-written your articles and coverage are!

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