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Meet Civic Investor Nick Manes: The Rapidian 'was my journalism school'

Nick Manes gained valuable experience reporting and writing for The Rapidian before moving on to a position at MiBiz.
Nick Manes

Nick Manes /Courtesy of Nick Manes

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Nick Manes was born and raised in Grand Rapids. He graduated from East Grand Rapids High School in 2003.

For the past four years, he has been a reporter at MiBiz, a business publication that covers news “the old school way” in West Michigan, Manes said.

His area of focus is commercial real estate.

“That winds up touching on a lot of different things,” he said. “For me, transportation, how incentives are working or not working.

After he finished high school, Manes worked at Coca-Cola for five years. When that did not work out, Manes returned to school. That was around the time The Rapidian was founded.

“I had never really done any real journalism but I had always enjoyed writing and thought it seemed like an interesting venture,” he said. “I decided to try that for a little bit because I had some time on my hands.”

Manes’ first story was a piece on former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin. After she was no longer the candidate, Palin came to Woodland Mall to do a book signing. Manes got to the mall early to find hundreds of people in line to see Palin.

“I just kind of chatted with them about why they were lining up eight hours before,” he said. “That turned into a story.”

Manes received feedback from readers who were glad to know what motivated people to attend the book signing. He continued to write for The Rapidian.

He also co-authored a series on Heartside with Michael Tuffelmire.

In the fall of 2011, Manes accepted an internship at The Rapidian.

To Manes, community can be defined as the various ways people come together.

Manes said The Rapidian’s coverage of nonprofits helps inform him and staff at MiBiz as the publication reports on the business of nonprofits. 

“I’ve never been to journalism school, so quite honestly, that [The Rapidian] was quite honestly my journalism school,” he said. “Those experiences are what got me noticed by a handful of different editors around town, offering me actual paid work.”

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