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IRE Board of Directors diversifies its Executive Committee

June 30, 2020

Cheryl W. Thompson of NPR will serve another year as IRE’s board president, the full board decided unanimously today during a livestreamed video meeting. Thompson, IRE’s first African-American president, has served in the role during the past two years. She is in her sixth year on the IRE board.

The board also elected other members of the Executive Committee for one-year terms:

  • Vice president: Mark Rochester, editor in chief at Type Investigations, a nonprofit newsroom based in Manhattan. Rochester, who was one of three Black journalists elected to the board earlier this month, previously served on the board from 2001-2003.
  • Treasurer: Jodi Upton, the Knight Chair in Data and Explanatory Journalism at Syracuse University. Upton served the past year as IRE treasurer, a position that also chairs the Endowment Committee. Earlier this month, she was elected to her second two-year term on the board.
  • Secretary: Jennifer LaFleur, data editor at The Investigative Reporting Workshop at American University. She was recently elected to her second term on the board.
  • At-large member: Steven Rich, database editor for investigations at The Washington Post. Rich is in his sixth year on the board.

During a month-long online voting process that concluded June 20, IRE members elected seven candidates to the board, including three Black members, increasing representation to a total of four. In addition, women hold a majority for the second consecutive year on the 13-member board.

Following the announcement of election results, the newly constituted board elected officers on June 20. The process resulted in an all-white Executive Committee. On June 24, the Executive Committee announced that all five members would resign to pave the way for a new election of officers.

Board members are elected by IRE members for two-year terms: seven seats during even-numbered years and six seats in odd-numbered years. There are no term limits for board members. Each year, the full board votes on one-year terms for its Executive Committee: president, vice president, treasurer, secretary and an at-large member.

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