Growth is never easy. You have to fight for it. That’s something our media outlet knows all about. We’ve spent the last decade-and-a-half carving out a unique niche for ourselves in South Carolina’s “marketplace of ideas.” Over that time, we’ve earned a reputation as an “independent, unapologetic” voice for truth, justice, fairness, accountability and long-overdue reforms to the Palmetto State’s notoriously corrupt, self-serving institutions – including some of its media institutions.
We’ve also earned a reputation as an outlet that subjects itself to the same standards – keeping our microphone on (and open) to those with dissenting, even harshly critical views.
Want to call us out? We will not only listen to you … we’ll publish you. Unedited. Unfiltered. And featured every bit as prominently as our reporting and commentary.
Our growth has come in “fits” and starts over the years, but it has always been marked by a commitment to going “all in” on our work. In other words, your subscriptions subsidize one thing (and one thing only): More people telling more stories as part of an unwavering effort to get more positive outcomes for those we cover and those who comprise our audience.
Which reminds me …
Today, we are pleased to welcome Andy Fancher to our growing fold.
Like this media outlet, Andy knows a little bit about starting from nothing … and fighting for every inch of ground.
A native of Dallas, Texas, Andy has extensive journalism experience dating back to his high school years. In fact, as a high school senior he self-funded a critically acclaimed web series on the lives and legacies of World War II veterans. Fancher’s work on that series was featured on NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt.
Not bad for a high school reporter, right?
Fancher’s first job was working aboard a saltwater fishing vessel in the Gulf of Mexico – which he followed with construction and landscaping positions. That’s good work. Hard work. Honest work.
Andy is the first of his family to graduate from college – transferring from Mountain View College (part of the Dallas County Community College District) to the University of North Texas, where he graduated cum laude in 2022. During his collegiate career, Fancher won four Lone Star local Emmy awards for his investigative work as director of special projects at ntTV.
He’s also done original reporting on issues near and dear to our media outlet’s heart – including the deteriorating situation at the U.S.-Mexican border.
Take a look …
(Click to view)
After graduating from college, Fancher left his home state to take his first post with a local media outlet – WIS TV 10 (NBC – Columbia, S.C.).
Fancher, 24, has some decided “outlaw” roots. He is kin to Joe Craig Fancher, who gained national notoriety in 1980 after he stole “The Gambler” – music legend Kenny Rogers‘ race car. The carjacking sparked a multi-state FBI manhunt.
“I am thrilled to carry the ungovernable spirit of my late ancestors forward in a journalistic capacity,” Fancher said.
Fancher’s arrival at FITSNews has not been without incident, either. Earlier this month, FITSNews found itself on the receiving end of some threatening messages from corporate attorneys representing Gray Television – WIS’ parent company.
These messages made false allegations – and menacing threats – against us related to Fancher’s envisioned employment at FITSNews. Apparently, my media outlet – which WIS has heretofore referred to dismissively as a “blog” – is now viewed as a broadcast competitor?
Maybe FITSNews really has “arrived …”
Those of you familiar with this media outlet are well aware we do not shy away from a fight. Win, lose or draw … we go to the mattresses. Our attorneys take cases like this to the bitter end – especially when principles are on the line.
To that end, Gray has already been introduced to two of our attorneys – and I am very much looking forward to acquainting them with the rest of our team in the weeks and months to come. Having picked a fight with us, my hope is this out-of-state corporation will at least do us the honor of … fighting.
Because that’s what we’re going to do …
I told Andy this week FITSNews has a chip on its shoulder – something to prove. We are a South Carolina born-and-bred company that was built from nothing. One hundred percent from the ground up. His story is the same thing.
“I have no shame in how I came up,” he said.
Neither do we …
That’s why we welcome a battle that will only serve to showcase who we are versus our apparent “competitors.”
ABOUT THE AUTHOR …
Will Folks is the founding editor of the news outlet you are currently reading. Prior to founding FITSNews, he served as press secretary to the governor of South Carolina. He lives in the Midlands region of the state with his wife and seven (soon to be eight) children.
WANNA SOUND OFF?
Got something you’d like to say in response to one of our articles? Or an issue you’d like to proactively address? We have an open microphone policy here at FITSNews! Submit your letter to the editor (or guest column) via email HERE. Got a tip for a story? CLICK HERE. Got a technical question or a glitch to report? CLICK HERE.