CivicStory (formerly NJ Arts News) was founded in 2009 to address gaps in TV news through high-quality short-form videos for general audiences. Founder and Creative Director Susan Haig, a conductor with broad orchestral and opera experience in the US and Canada, aimed to deepen news directors' and the public's awareness of the transformative work of orchestras and other cultural nonprofits. NJ Arts News received tax-exempt status in 2014 and was renamed CivicStory in 2015 to reflect our broader focus on civics, sustainability, and creative change in urban areas.
CivicStory's inventory of 80 videos encompasses subjects such as humanities and urban growth, environmental stewardship, engaged citizenship, and music and arts. More than 30 of these videos have aired on NJTV News, on WHYY’s NewsWorks.org, in radio form on WBGO (Newark), and on local cable stations. Since 2010, CivicStory has presented public forums and no-blame dialogue exploring the civic role and purpose of news, and the impact of news media on democracy and our environment.