Brittany Meiling, managing editor of the Springfield Daily Citizen. (Photo by Jym Wilson)


After the most rewarding year and a half of my professional life, I am leaving my post as the managing editor of the Springfield Daily Citizen. It’s an admission that would have shocked me just six months ago.

This position has been more than a job to me. It’s been an opportunity to throw everything I have into sustainable, impactful, thriving local journalism — a true labor of the heart.

When CEO David Stoeffler approached me in the fall of 2021, I was eager to help shape such an ambitious idea. I wanted to see Springfield have the kind of robust news coverage normally reserved for large cities. I wanted to fill the gaps left by shrinking staff and shrinking budgets in local news.

We came to the table with ambitions that far exceeded our bandwidth, but we shoved forward and assembled a team of equally ambitious journalists eager to serve Springfield.

It’s been a journey, complete with periods of exhaustion and elation. I’m so proud of what we’ve accomplished in year one.

In its first year, the Daily Citizen published over 1,700 articles, including award-winning stories on issues of homelessness in Springfield. We launched four newsletters, a podcast, an events calendar, and a robust news site with four to eight news stories published five days a week.

We held a communitywide forum on the major issue of a child care crisis in our region, and partnered with KY3 to publish a series of impactful, solutions-oriented journalism.

We expanded our team and promoted some in our ranks. We have health insurance now. We even have cream in the breakroom (glory be!).

Springfield Daily Citizen team celebrates its team members’ win of the Breaking Barriers Award in September, 2022.

Over the past few months, I’ve realized that the chaos has begun to settle. Systems are smooth, the staff is cranking, and the audience is tuned in. It is gratifying to see an idea flourish from schematics and blueprints into a well-oiled machine, charging forward with a power all its own.

The relevant stillness has given me a moment to pause and look around. I’m so happy with what I see when I’m at work. Now, it’s time for me to tell you why I’m leaving.

Both a journalist and a momma at heart

Leo stands in the garden. (Photo by Brittany Meiling)

I’m the mother of a little boy named Leo. He was barely 1 when I started at the Daily Citizen, and he’s 2.5 today. A few months ago, Leo asked me why I’ve “always got to work?”

The question jolted me. I don’t always work. I work very reasonable hours! But his question lingered in my head. 

Suddenly, time was slipping and Leo seemed exponentially older by the day. Was he this tall last week? When did he start making jokes like that? Since when does Leo know every word to a K-pop song?

Then one day, I spent some time with my nephew. He’s older than Leo by several years, and he’s no longer obsessed with his momma. Instead of clinging to her side at family gatherings, he ambles alone in the backyard or plays video games in another room. Sometimes, he rolls his eyes when she talks to him.

“Oh… that’s right,” I thought. They’re not adoring toddlers forever… 

As much as I love journalism — and in particular, this fantastic team — it’s time for me to hit the pause button on my career. 

My last day is March 24, and then I embark on a life I know very little about. I’m going to stay home with Leo full time, likely swinging between euphoric mornings at the park to frustration-filled afternoons scrubbing Sharpie off my walls.

You’ll likely still hear from me from time to time, as I have intentions of setting up a freelance writing practice once things settle at home. (Writers can rarely stop writing, even when they try.) You can expect to hear me opining on parenthood in Springfield, or leaning into my former area of expertise from my California days: business, retail or tech.

You can reach me at or connect with me on Twitter at @BrittanyMeiling.

Here at the Citizen, management is working to fill this open position. I might be biased, but I think it’s the best job in town. If you’re interested, reach out to CEO David Stoeffler at

Brittany Meiling

Brittany Meiling is managing editor at the Springfield Daily Citizen. She is a career journalist, most recently working as a newsroom analyst for the Los Angeles Times and a reporter for the San Diego Union-Tribune. Springfield-born, Meiling grew up in Republic and graduated from Missouri State University with a degree in journalism. More by Brittany Meiling