The Free Times staff is pleased to announce Jordan Lawrence has been promoted to lead the publication’s news efforts. As managing editor, Lawrence will direct Free Times’ editorial department, including the day-to-day management of two full-time writers and a team of about 20 freelance writers and photographers, leading the organization’s news strategy and overseeing editorial relationships with readers and the community.
Lawrence joined Free Times’ staff in 2014 as music and listings editor. He was then promoted to arts and entertainment editor in March 2016 where he guided all coverage of cultural arts, music and events. He was part of the team that navigated through Charleston-based Evening Post Industries’ (parent company of The Post and Courier) acquisition of Free Times in 2016. Under Jordan’s leadership as arts and entertainment editor, Free Times has both broadened and deepened its coverage of our region’s cultural arts and music scenes at a time when coverage of those topics is more and more difficult to find.
Jordan will continue to be involved in the publication’s arts and entertainment coverage, including Free Times’ annual comprehensive calendar of arts events and other special projects.
He has extended his passion for making Columbia a vibrant city by helping revive Free Times’ long-standing Music Crawl in 2018. He is working on plans to feature 24 bands for the next Music Crawl in September. In his own time, Jordan has curated concert stages for Indie Grits and the Freeway Music Festival.
Prior to joining Free Times, Jordan served as the editor of Shuffle, a quarterly magazine that covered local music in the Carolinas. He has contributed content to several alt weekly newspapers in the Southeast, including Nashville Scene and Indy Week.
A seasoned member of Free Times’ news team, Lawrence is committed to the product’s role in Columbia.
“A city like Columbia needs an alternative voice,” Lawrence said. “Our city needs someone to react in a contrary way when necessary, and speak honestly when no one else does. Free Times does that.”
He is excited to further develop Free Times’ award-winning arts, entertainment, and food and beverage coverage.
Lawrence looks forward to Free Times further increasing its local and business news coverage through its collaboration with sister-paper The Post and Courier.
“I am excited to continue this partnership and the resources that it provides,” he stated. “We will be able to offer readers a more diverse span of content while also getting back to our roots and, together, conducting investigative and large-issue-based journalism.”
Jordan is a graduate of the journalism school at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he received a bachelor’s degree in public relations. He and his wife, Rebecca Putterman, live in West Columbia.
Jordan has proven time and again his dedication to our company and his resourcefulness in best serving our readers. The staff of Free Times looks forward to his continued leadership.