By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Graham buys 3 Alabama newspapers
News owner acquires papers in Albertville, Fort Payne, Scottsboro
Patrick Graham
Patrick Graham

Covington News owner Patrick Graham on Wednesday announced he has acquired three additional newspapers in northeast Alabama.

Graham purchased The Sand Mountain Reporter in Albertville, Alabama; the Times-Journal in Fort Payne, Alabama; and the Jackson County Sentinel in Scottsboro, Alabama, from the Walls family and Southern Newspapers Inc. of Houston.

Sale of the newspapers was facilitated with help from the firm of Cribb, Greene & Cope under the direction of John Cribb and Jeff Potts of that firm.

“I started my career in newspaper management in northeast Alabama,” Graham said. “I have so many great personal and professional memories associated with my family’s time in these tremendous communities. I can’t tell you how excited I am to be able to come back to the area as the owner of these papers and reconnect with old friends, make new ones and work hard on behalf of both in order to uphold the legacy of community service and community journalism established by the Walls family and Southern for so many years.”

Lissa W. Walls, chairman and owner of Southern Newspapers, said the company has a long association with the newspapers in these communities that has been enjoyable and profitable, and the company is very appreciative of that long-standing relationship.

“As a native of Guntersville, my interest and concern for northeast Alabama runs deep. I am pleased the ownership transition is from one family and community focused operator to another,” Walls said. “Patrick Graham is an experienced and proven newspaper operator. His history of living and working in northeast Alabama make him ideally suited to lead these communities into a bright future."

Graham previously served as the managing editor in Fort Payne from 1996 to 2000 and then served as the associate publisher in Albertville from 2000 to 2003 before coming to Monroe as the publisher from 2003 to 2009.

Graham later bought The Walton Tribune from Southern in 2014 and added The News to his company in 2017.

“Monroe and Walton County are home and will continue to be,” Graham said. “But I’m very excited and appreciative of the trust Southern has shown in allowing me the opportunity to professionally serve these communities.”

Graham’s newspapers in Georgia have been consistently recognized by the Georgia Press Association for the quality local coverage they have provided their communities during Graham’s time as owner. Graham said the staffs have been providing an award-winning effort for their readers and advertisers for many years, and he is now ready to help staff members take an already great product to the next level.

“Simply put, I want to put out the very best newspapers of their size in the state of Alabama. The kind of newspapers that readers will absolutely have to pick up because they feel like they might be missing something if they don’t,” Graham said. “We have communities that deserve that kind of quality coverage, and we have the kind of staffs that can deliver that kind of quality coverage.”

Graham and his wife, Allison, have been married for 25 years. Both were born and raised in Huntsville and are graduates of the University of Alabama, with Patrick getting his degree in 1991 and Allison hers in 1992.

The couple has three daughters, Madison, 24, who was born in Huntsville, Alabama; Tabitha, 21, who was born in Fort Payne; and AnnaBelle, 17, who was born in Boaz. Daughters Madison and Tabitha work with Graham at The Walton Tribune.

The family lives in Monroe and Walton County where they attend St. Anna’s Catholic Church in Monroe.