Rick Thomason is new president of TN Press Association

Sep 14, 2021

Rick Thomason, publisher of The Kingsport Times News and the Johnson City Press, is the new president of the Tennessee Press Association (TPA).

TPA is the trade association of the state’s daily and non-daily newspapers. It is composed of 18 daily newspapers and 113 non-daily newspapers.

Thomason succeeds Daniel Richardson, publisher of the Carroll County News Leader and vice president of Magic Valley Publishing Inc.

Robyn Gentile, member services manager of the Tennessee Press Association, announced August 23 that Rick Thomason has been named board president. 

Thomason joined the board of the Tennessee Press Association in 2020. He is a 41-year veteran of the newspaper business and has served as a general assignment reporter, sports reporter, sports editor, editor of both weekly and daily newspapers, and publisher of both weeklies and daily newspapers.

Thomason currently serves as publisher of both the Kingsport Times News and the Johnson City Press and is president of Six Rivers Media, LLC, the parent company of both the Times News and the Press.

He is a graduate of Auburn University with a BS in mass communication with a minor in biology and a double minor in chemistry. He is also a graduate of the condensed MBA program at the Media Management Center at Northwestern University.

In his spare time, he is an avid reader, photographer and last year took up the sport of kickboxing.

The TPA was founded in 1870-71 for the purpose of creating a unified voice for the newspaper industry in Tennessee. Today, TPA continues to provide assistance to its 131 member newspapers by monitoring legislative activities, providing training programs, issuing press credentials, maintaining a website and providing regular meetings and forums to foster the exchange of information and ideas.

The TPA presidency rotates among TPA’s three divisions of Tennessee - east, middle and west - and alternates each year between a daily and non-daily publication.