For Marie Gilmore, journalism has always been her passion – which can be seen by the Osprey Observer itself. Gilmore is the editor and publisher of this community newspaper that continues to impact and inspire the community.
Raised in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, Gilmore loved to write. As a teenager, Gilmore even got a job at her local newspaper, The Calgary Sun, where she fetched coffee for all of the editors and journalists. Yet, in no time at all, Gilmore was writing articles for the newspaper, some of which landed on the front page.
During her college years, she also wrote for her school paper. She graduated with a degree in Communications at Mount Royal University’s Journalism program. Once graduated Gilmore freelanced for several Daily, Weekly and Monthly publications.
In 1996 she got married to her husband, Doug Gilmore, with whom she had three sons: Cross, 18, Troy, 14, and Rhett, 5. When she got married she moved with her husband to Tampa where she freelanced for the Tampa Tribune. After having kids they found FishHawk where she and her husband built a house and moved. “It was just such a perfect place to raise a family,” noted Gilmore.
When Gilmore moved to FishHawk in 2001, she realized there was no community paper to express all the good happening in the neighborhood. So, she decided to start her own. Beginning in her home, Gilmore wrote the stories, sold the ads, and did everything else for the one page folded newsletter that she photocopied and hand-delivered to 750 homes.
As the community grew, so did the paper. It was now a newspaper that published 200 pages a month to 74,000 homes. As the Osprey Observer continued to grow, Gilmore hired others to help sustain the different editions. “Michelle Colesanti was the first employee and together the Osprey Observer team has grown together as a family,” said Gilmore. Plus, every day she gets to meet new incredible people within her community, which is one of her most favorite things about her job. “It’s a dream come true. There’s nothing I’d rather be doing,” Gilmore added.
Outside of the paper, Gilmore and her family love to travel and take cruises. When she has time, she enjoys making photo books of her trips. Her and her husband also love to bowl; they are in a once a month bowling league that this year took the championship.
A couple of years ago, Gilmore also published a book called “Open For Business! Now What?” that can be bought on Amazon. She was also awarded Citizen of the Year by the Riverview Chambers of Commerce. The Osprey Observer and Gilmore have been awarded several other accomplishments including Small Business of the Year, Tampa Chamber of Commerce ABWA Pioneering Woman of the Year, ABWA Business Woman of the Year, Minority-Owned Small Business of the Year, and Business Leader’s Women Extraordinaire Award.