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The Wonder Years

by Peter Proko--Editor-in-Chief

I was working for a newspaper, only a handful of years removed from college, when I first saw South Jersey Magazine sitting on a desk in the newsroom. I had never heard of this new publication, but was intrigued by the concept of a lifestyle magazine for this area. I picked it up and began to peruse its pages. For an area that is so often overlooked with Philadelphia lingering nearby, I found the local coverage a breath of fresh air. The magazine seemed to give South Jersey an identity, something to be proud of.

I went home that night and sent an unsolicited résumé. There was no job opening posted anywhere but, for a while leading up to this day, I knew two things: I wanted out of the crumbling newspaper business and I wanted to work for a magazine. I never got any response, not surprisingly given the circumstances.

In September 2009, after a stop at another magazine for a few years in between, I finally arrived at our Marlton offices. It’s funny how things come together sometimes. I didn’t expect to end up here, but maybe all along I knew that I would.

The magazine had grown a lot since that day I first discovered it, and I was eager to take my skills and vision to usher in a new era while continuing to elevate its presence in South Jersey. I’d like to think I’ve been successful, but you don’t get anywhere without a team as solid as the one we have here.

This month, South Jersey Magazine marks its 10th anniversary. And though I haven’t been here for the entire decade, I’m honored to have been along for part of the ride. On behalf of everyone here, we’d like to extend our deepest appreciation to all of the readers and advertisers who have made our magazine what it is today. You inspire us to get better each month, and that’s something we’ll never waver on. We hope you enjoy our look back starting on Page 64; it’s a wonderful journey that is sure to evoke some fond memories.

There’s also plenty more packed into this special edition, like our one-on-one with new Phils manager Ryne Sandberg; a Voorhees teen’s inspirational story; Marlton mom and VH1 star Alicia DiMichele; a local man with an unbelievable memory; and the best golf courses down the Shore. Here’s a toast to the next 10 years!

Kind regards,
Peter J. Proko

Published (and copyrighted) in South Jersey Magazine, Volume 11, Issue 1 April, 2014).
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