A group of Houston foundations announced last month it was contributing $20 million to launch a local news nonprofit newsroom.

Three philanthropies – the Houston Endowment, Kinder Foundation, and Arnold Ventures – made the announcement together, emphasizing the need to add and improve to the local news ecosystem in Texas’ largest city.

Supporters expect it to be one of the largest independent non-profit news operations in the country. The group expects it will launch with coverage of public policy, politics and statewide issues. The coalition has begun its search for leadership staff already.

The local foundations worked with the American Journalism Project over two years conducting surveys, focus groups and listening sessions to formulate a plan for launch. AJP is also providing funding.

The group expects to launch its online publication in late 2022 or early 2023. The news and journalism produced by the outlet will be free to readers and other news organizations. The business will be supported by membership and sponsorship revenue in addition to philanthropic sources.

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Eric Persons is an independent consultant. He helped the Central Current, Inc. founders launch the nonprofit.