Selen Ring Winners
Photo credit: USC Annenberg School
for Communication & Journalism

Congratulations to Michael J. Berens and Ken Armstrong of The Seattle Times, for receiving the 2012 Selden Ring Award for Investigative Reporting, for their series “Methadone and the Politics of Pain.” Berens will be speaking at IRE’s Watchdog Workshop this weekend in Spokane, Wash. Berens and Armstong, both IRE members, will be presented the journalism award during the Selden Ring Award Luncheon, part of IRE’s Watchdog Workshop April 13-14 in Los Angeles.

From USC’s website:

The $35,000 annual award, which has been presented for the past 23 years by the School of Journalism at USC Annenberg, honors the year’s outstanding work in investigative journalism that led to direct results.

Selden Ring Award judges lauded Berens and Armstrong for: “Thorough and groundbreaking reporting on how more than 2,000 people in Washington state have fatally overdosed on the painkiller methadone. ‘Methadone and the Politics of Pain’ showed how the state steered Medicaid patients toward methadone despite repeated warnings about its risks. The drug saved the state money because it is a cheap painkiller, but poor patients paid for the savings with their lives.”