By Barbara Fluhrer
and Maxine Ussery
When the Post News Group celebrates its sixth anniversary on December 6 and 7,it will be especially memorable for Publisher Paul Cobb.
“Ironically, just one week after the purchase we were hit with a pearl harbor-type Bombshell when Kamala Harris filed criminal charges with a possible fine of $18 million dollars against us for some illegal dumping that occurred under the previous owner, Velda , nearly 2 years before our purchase,” said Cobb as he reflected on the investors that requested their money back. “We lost more than $350,000 in investment capital and incurred more than $250,000 in legal fees.
The national publicity caused many advertising agencies to write us off. Some even predicted that we wouldn’t last 3 months.”
Cobb prevailed over Harris in court and after three years she finally dropped the charges. Cobb then sued Berkley and their law firm for fraud and negligence and misrepresentation. The jury, with no Blacks, agreed with Cobb and awarded him substantial damages from Berkley and her law firm.
When the dust settled after the legal brouhaha with Kamala, all editions of the Post and El Mundo endorsed her for Attorney General. Cobb printed 250,000 extra editions for door-to-door distribution throughout the bay area.
Cobb said he and a Chinese newspaper will jointly publish stories of mutual Interest in 2011. He also said that despite the legal fight with Harris his papers circulated petitions to draft Ron Dellums for Mayor. “We will also publish regular articles to help promote Mayor-elect Jean Quan’s extensive neighborhood outreach strategy. I served with her on the school board and I know she truly cares abou our city’s children and their safety and future,” said Cobb.
“If she commits to a Hire-Oakland and Buy Oakland strategy she will follow Through.”
Despite the downturn for newspapers, 2010 will be the Post’s most successful year to date.
Cobb said the “Good News Is…” insert will expand to include more than 1,500 predominantly African American houses of worship. Ethnic publications have a Boutique, unique market niche that will grow. By having El Mundo for more than 40 years we are positioned to expand to accommodate the growth in the Latino market. We also expect to be involved in some mergers and acquisitions.”
Presently the Post News Group includes: Oakland Post, San Francisco Post, Richmond Post, Marin County Post, Berkeley Tri-City Post, South County Post (San Leandro to Livermore), El Mundo, Capitol Post and The Good News Is Journal.