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About Us

Every year since 1890 the De Leon Free Press has reported the news in our town and surrounding rural community. From the early days, through the oil boom, the recession, war years and right on up into the modern era, we have been here. During that time the De Leon Free Press has become essential reading for local citizens, for former residents and for those with an interest in our community and area. We provide in-depth news of local and county governments, our schools, our county hospital and water districts, law enforcement and the volunteer fire department. We also include people news such as weddings and birth announcements, obituaries, and church activities. And, we cover the many boys and girls sports programs of De Leon High School where excellence and winning is a long established tradition. Our feature stories and special features provide additional interest and reading enjoyment. Profiles of local personalities, humor columns, puzzles, recipes, war stories, human interest stories, and historical recaps all add flavor and zest to the sometimes dull business of local news. It all adds up to a finely detailed look at life on the north end of Comanche County and surrounding areas, and a spotlight shining on De Leon, the self proclaimed, "Busiest Town, Friendliest People". We are home to the annual De Leon Peach & Melon Festival, the Terrill Antique Car Museum, and an old-time downtown Texas main street boasting fine dining, an old time drug store with a working soda fountain, and much more. If you are not fortunate enough to live here, the only way you will be able to read about it all is through a subscription. You can, however, get a sampling of our weekly reporting and photography by looking at our on-line archives. We don't want to deny any of our readers the authentic newspaper reading experience, however. So, if you are interested, try us out. $35 will bring you our newspaper for one year anywhere the U.S. Postal Service can deliver it. If you live in Texas, the annual subscription is $30, $25 for Comanche County postal addresses. An online Internet edition is also available for $20. Just go to the Subscribe page.

Our newspaper staff

Publisher – Jon Awbrey

Jon grew up in the west Texas town of Brownfield, but has made the Proctor Lake area his home for the past several years. Jon came to the Free Press after experience as a marketing research editor in Lubbock, a journalism teacher in Big Lake, and a newspaper staff writer in Dublin. His reporting and feature writing has been recognized by the Texas Press Association, North and East Texas Press Association, the West Texas Press Association, and the International Reading Association.

Office Manager – Kay Hodges

Kay Hodges Kay has the longest tenure with our newspaper, having been here since February of 1999. Kay is our creative person on staff. She builds our local ads and also works on newspaper layout, and then is responsible for compiling and sending the electronic files for printing.

Production – Monica Segura

Monica Segura Monica, the newest addition to the Free Press, was born and raised in DeLeon. She graduated DeLeon High School in 2005, then received her Associates degree in 2007 from Cisco Junior College. She is currently working on her Bachelors degree in Communications, Public Relations/Journalism from Tarleton State University.

Editor – Laura Kestner

Laura is a journalist with much experience and a long list of credentials, having worked in responsible positions for several newspapers in the area. She and her husband, John, who is a newspaper pressman, live in De Leon. Laura is an accomplished writer and history buff.

Advertising – Betty Wofford

Betty Wofford Betty grew up in the Duster community west of De Leon and has lived and worked in De Leon all her life. For many years she ran the Blossom Shop and is often referred to by the locals as "Miss Blossom". She calls on area businesses and individuals and assists them with their advertising and community support efforts.

Staff Writer – Sarah Briscoe

Sarah Briscoe A recent arrival in DeLeon, Sarah is a native of Brownfield, Texas. She is a Lubbock Christian University alumna, where she majored in Spanish. Although new to journalism, her work has already appeared in a number of central Texas newspapers.