Edmontonians magazine brought back from the dead by controversial publisher
In a curious turn of events, Edmontonians magazine is being brought back after its closure was announced in June. The resurrection is being done by Moe Najmeddine of Cedar Publishing Corporation, who says in a press release that after a three-month hiatus the magazine will resume publishing as of October 2010, with editor Barb Deters resuming her role and regular contributors continuing.
The once oversized monthly will now be a quarterly in a standard magazine format.
Edmontonians was founded in 1989 by former publisher Sharon MacLean and her late husband Dick, who died in 1993. Sharon Maclean was quoted in the release saying:
“I had an exciting and fulfilling 21 years… now I am thrilled to see another generation take on the challenge and continue a legacy of excellence.”
Najmeddine was named one of Sizzling Twenty under 30 in 2003 and his release said the magazine would be carrying on the annual feature.
Cedar currently says it publishes 15 magazines including Neighbourhood Watch Newsmagazine, Alberta Paramedics Newsmagazine, Food Bank Network Newsmagazine, Safe Parent Association Newsmagazine, Alberta Arab Directory and Alberta Seniors Directory. All are connected in one way or another with specific causes, professions and community initiatives. with distribution locally, provincially and nationally as appropriate.
In an earlier post on this blog, we reported that Cedar was being sued by the City of Edmonton on behalf of the local Crime Stoppers organization, claiming that Cedar's Edmonton Firefighters Magazine was being passed off as being officially connected to Edmonton Fire Rescue.
This is not the first time that Cedar Publishing and its owner, Mohamad Najmeddine has clashed with the authorities. In June 2008, the Crime Stoppers Organization filed a claim against the company for using their logo, making it hard for the independent organization to raise money. Apparently Cedar and Crimestoppers had agreed in 2004 to publish a magazine in partnership, but the arrangement was terminated in February 2007.
Crime Stoppers is asking for $500,00 for loss of donations and goodwill and $250,000 in punitive damages. Najmeddine, in his statement of defence, argues that Crime Stoppers reneged on its contract and appropriated his clients by starting their own magazine called "Crime Stoppers and you...Making a difference."
Najmeddine said he plans to expand Edmontonians' support for charity and not-for-profit groups, saying that Cedar Publishing has donated more than $300,000 to charities and supports numerous fundraising events.
Najmeddine is president of the Canadian Mental Health Association-Edmonton, treasurer of the Progressive Conservative Association-Edmonton Decore, vice-president of the Canadian Arab Professional & Business Club, sports director of the Evansdale Community League, and a director of the Canadian Arab Friendship Association.