A Falconer native has taken on a newly created bipartisan role within Chautauqua County Government to enhance and ease communication between both the news media and public.
Justin Gould was hired this month as the County’s new Media Information Officer. In the position, Gould will disseminate all noteworthy county communications and coordinate news media inquiries that pertain to County Government and other related affairs.
“I’m honored to be offered this opportunity to work for the people of Chautauqua County,” said Gould in a statement. “While it will be an adjustment to cross the line from reporting daily local news, to disseminating information, I’m excited to build a bridge between media coverage and governmental affairs.”
A graduate of Falconer High School, Gould co-founded WNY News Now, an online news gathering, and publishing agency based in Jamestown, NY. Until now, Gould owned and operated the business serving as News Director.
“While it’s bittersweet to leave newsgathering and sell my stake in WNY News Now, I’m excited to build off my experiences and, in a way, report the news of county government,” explained Gould. “An open and free press is a pillar of our Representative Democracy. Often referred to as the ‘fourth estate’, I will work every day in a bipartisan manner to not only inform the public, but also, assist news agencies across the region, state, country and world better access local officials.”
While the position will physically be located in the County Executive’s office, with Gould maintaining an office in Mayville, NY, duties extend beyond.
“I’m proud to have Justin join the Chautauqua County Government team, taking on what is uncharted territory to build a path for the Media Information Officer position,” said Chautauqua County Executive Paul M. Wendel, Jr. “I believe Justin’s record of fair and accurate news reporting is vital to the role’s success.”
In addition to acting as a liaison for news media organizations, coordinating press conferences, press releases and responding to emergencies as they develop providing up-to-date information to both the news media and public; Gould will also assist the legislature, all departments, and agencies within county government to enhance public relations.
Gould is proud to accept the job, which will officially start on June 1, 2023.