Extra Extra : IRE News

Charity Checker

The Tampa Bay Times, in partnership with The Center for Investigative Reporting, has built an online tool to make charity research a little easier. Our “Charity Checker” website, for the first time, aggregates the ratings and reviews already offered by several of the nation’s most prominent watchdog organizations. With a simple search, you can see their results, all in one place, then click through to dig deeper into a charity through GuideStar, Charity Navigator, GreatNonprofits and the Better Business Bureau. The idea for Charity Checker grew out of our reporting on America’s Worst Charities, a yearlong investigation into ...

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Dunlap, convicted of killing Don Bolles, died in prison

The Arizona Republic reported that Max Dunlap, convicted of killing Don Bolles, died at the Arizona State Prison Complex-Tucson on Tuesday. "Dunlap, 80, was convicted of murder and conspiracy to commit murder in 1993. He was serving a life sentence. Dunlap was unresponsive Tuesday morning in the Rincon medical unit in Tucson. Staff performed CPR before Dunlap was declared dead of what appears to be natural causes."

Watchdogs at Work

Leann Frola interviewed six award-winning investigative journalists for Poynter Online to find out how they continue to produce high-quality investigative journalism despite industry cut-backs. The interviewees include IRE Executive Director Brant Houston, former board president Deborah Nelson and former board member Stuart Watson.

Package recalls Bolles and the Arizona Project

The Arizona Republic has published a package of stories, photos and audio in remembrance of the 30th anniversary of the bombing that killed reporter Don Bolles. The bombing and Bolles' death 11 days later was the catalyst for the Arizona Project, an important event that had a hand in shaping IRE's early years. The present-day package of stories, researched and written by Arizona State University students, includes articles about the state of investigative journalism today. A survey of IRE members at the 100 largest newspapers in the country found that newspapers today care about investigative stories but frequently don ... Read more ...

IRE Award winners announced

Toxic dumping, public corruption investigations among winners
Investigative stories about deceit in Cleveland's public school district and an environmental disaster in New Jersey won the top prizes in the 2005 IRE awards, Investigative Reporters and Editors announced today. Those were among 15 prizes awarded by IRE. Other stories honored included a 17-year body of crime reporting that unmasked the killer in the 1963 murder of civil rights worker Medgar Evers, investigations into fraud and abuse in two federal agencies and stories documenting troubles with the pharmaceutical industry. In addition, IRE recognized one of the youngest journalists it has honored ... Read more ...

Probe into meth epidemic wins top Meyer award

Major investigative reports on the nation's methamphetamine epidemic, systemic failures in the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and the loss of Florida's wetlands are winners of the first Philip Meyer Awards.
* First Place: The Oregonian for "Unnecessary Epidemic"
* Second Place: The Knight-Ridder Washington Bureau for "Discharged and Dishonored"
* Third Place: The St. Petersburg Times, for "Vanishing Wetlands"
Read more about the winners.

IRE Awards deadline approaches: Jan. 9

IRE reminds Extra! Extra! readers that the postmark deadline for entering the IRE Awards is fast approaching — Jan. 9, 2006. The IRE Awards recognize the best investigative reporting across print, broadcast and online categories.
Don't let your best work go unnoticed!
With recent newsroom cost-cutting efforts, it's best not to count on someone else to automatically enter your stories. Only you can make sure your work gets submitted.
Contest details and entry form can be found on our Web site. If you have questions, please contact Beth Kopine, 573-882-6668.

Call for entries: Philip Meyer Journalism Award

The National Institute for Computer-Assisted Reporting, a joint program of IRE and the Missouri School of Journalism; the Knight Chair in Journalism at Arizona State University; and IRE are proud to introduce the Philip Meyer Journalism Award, a contest to recognize the best journalism done using social science research methods. The awards are in honor of Philip Meyer, Knight Chair in Journalism at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Meyer is the author of Precision Journalism, the seminal 1972 book (and subsequent editions) that focused growing numbers of journalists on the idea of using social science methods to ... Read more ...

FEMA contracts with criminals

Megan O'Matz and Sally Kestin of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel found that "government inspectors entrusted to enter disaster victims' homes and verify damage claims include criminals with records for embezzlement, drug dealing and robbery." The paper found the names of more than 100 inspectors for the Federal Emergency Management Agency through public and confidential sources; 30 had criminal records. "The story is the latest in the paper's investigation into FEMA's mismanagement of hurricane relief funds. Read more about the story in the upcoming May ... Read more ...