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Announcing the 2017 IRE Award winners and finalists

IRE is proud to announce the winners and finalists of the 2017 IRE Awards

COLUMBIA, Missouri – Journalists who uncovered wrongdoing that bolstered the #MeToo movement, investigated the murder of a colleague, faced a lawsuit for trying to get public records and brought down a corrupt 100-year-old agency are among the winners of the 2017 Investigative Reporters & Editors Awards.

Across the board, this year’s winners made significant impacts. They forced testing of rape kits, made neurosurgery safer for patients and exposed the failure of the British government to investigate the murders of Russians on its soil.

"This year’s entries were among the finest examples of investigative reporting I’ve seen since I began my tenure on the awards committee," said Jill Riepenhoff, chair of IRE’s Contest Committee. "From first-year students to seasoned pros, these journalists showed the importance of investigative reporting to hold the powerful accountable. They shattered the fake news myth."

This year’s winners were selected from among more than 450 entries. Two projects were singled out for IRE Medals, the highest honor the organization bestows. The awards, given since 1979, recognize the most outstanding watchdog journalism of the year. The contest covers 17 categories across media platforms and a range of market sizes.

The IRE Awards will be presented at a luncheon on June 16 at the 2018 IRE Conference in Orlando, Florida.

Here are the winners: (Or, click here for a complete list of winners, finalists, judges and judges’ comments)

IRE Medals (2):

  • "Harassed," The New York Times, The New York Times staff

  • "Killing Pavel," Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project and Slidstvo.Info, Anna Babinets, Elena Loginova, Vlad Lavrov, Dmytro Gnap, Matt Sarnecki, Ilya Magazanin, Sergiu Brega, Timmi Allen (Bellingcat)

Tom Renner Award: "From Russia With Blood," BuzzFeed News, Heidi Blake, Jason Leopold, Tom Warren, Richard Holmes, Jane Bradley, Alex Campbell

FOI Award: "Deadly Decisions," Malheur Enterprise, Les Zaitz, John Braese, Pat Caldwell

Print/Online Division I: "Harassed," The New York Times, The New York Times staff (medal winner)

Print/Online Division II: "Quantity of Care," The Seattle Times, Mike Baker and Justin Mayo

Print/Online Division III: "Fostering Failure," San Francisco Chronicle, Karen de Sá, Cynthia Dizikes, Joaquin Palomino, Leah Millis

Print/Online Division IV: "Fake Subpoenas," The Lens, Charles Maldonado, Steve Myers

Broadcast/Video Division I: "Killing Pavel," Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project and, Anna Babinets, Elena Loginova, Vlad Lavrov, Dmytro Gnap, Matt Sarnecki, Ilya Magazanin, Sergiu Brega, Timmi Allen (Bellingcat)
(medal winner)

Broadcast/Video Division II (tie):

Broadcast/Video Division III: "Influence, Infidelity and Men in Power," WSMV-Nashville, Nancy Amons, Jeremy Finley, Demetria Kalodimos, Jim Garbee, Jason Finley

Broadcast/Video Division IV: "State of Unrest," WVUE-New Orleans, Lee Zurik, Jon Turnipseed, Tom Wright, Mike Schaefer, Greg Phillips

Radio/Audio - Large: "They Got Hurt at Work, Then They Got Deported," NPR and ProPublica, Howard Berkes (NPR), Michael Grabell (ProPublica), Meg Anderson (NPR), Nicole Beemsterboer (NPR), Sarah Betancourt (ProPublica), Graham Bishai (NPR)

Radio/Audio - Small: "The Pope's Long Con," The Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting, R.G. Dunlop, Jacob Ryan, Laura Ellis, Brendan McCarthy, Erica Peterson, Stephen George, Sean Cannon, Alexandra Kanik

Student - Large: "Crude Power: An Investigation Into Oil, Money and Influence in Saskatchewan," University of Regina School of Journalism, Jennifer Ackerman, Madina Azizi, Janelle Blakley, Cory Coleman, Josh Diaz, Brenna Engel, Céline Grimard, Jared Gottselig, Rebbeca Marroquin, Katie Doke Sawatsky, Michaela Solomon, Kyrsten Stringer, Caitlin Taylor, Michael Wrobel, Trevor Grant, Patricia Elliott

Student - Small: "Sexual Assault Evidence Backlog," The Columbia Missourian, Anna Brett

Investigations Triggered by Breaking News: "Semaj Crosby," Chicago Tribune, David Jackson, Gary Marx, Duaa Eldeib, Alicia Fabbre, Stacey Wescott

Book: "Violated: Exposing Rape at Baylor University Amid College Football’s Sexual Assault Crisis," Paula Lavigne and Mark Schlabach

Gannett Award for Innovation in Watchdog Journalism: "Paradise Papers: Secrets of the Global Elite," The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, Süddeutsche Zeitung, The New York Times, The Guardian and more than 90 media partners

Click here for a complete list of winners, finalists, judges and judges’ comments.

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