Stories

The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 27,000 investigative stories.

Most of our stories are not available for download but can be easily ordered by contacting the Resource Center directly at 573-882-3364 or [email protected] where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "donors" ...

  • In Donors We Trust

    This entry features the Detroit Free Press' innovative and exhaustive look into irregularities in the management of the University of Michigan’s $11 billion endowment. The years-long investigation detailed how executives at some of the nation's top investment firms donated hundreds of millions of dollars to the University of Michigan while the university in turn invested as much as $4 billion in those companies' funds. More than $400 million of that amount was sent into funds managed by three alumni who advise the university on the investments of its endowment. Critics who reviewed the newspaper’s computational and statistical analysis said Michigan’s approach of investing with some of its top donors, who also help guide the university's endowment, creates a conflict. After the publication of more than a dozen stories throughout 2018, the university reformed its conflict-of-interest rules; its president apologized for a lack in oversight; a member of its board of regents returned more than $20,000 in campaign contributions from an investment fund leader; and voters ousted both board incumbents running for re-election.
  • In Donors We Trust

    This entry features the Detroit Free Press' innovative and exhaustive look into irregularities in the management of the University of Michigan’s $11 billion endowment. The years-long investigation detailed how executives at some of the nation's top investment firms donated hundreds of millions of dollars to the University of Michigan while the university in turn invested as much as $4 billion in those companies' funds. More than $400 million of that amount was sent into funds managed by three alumni who advise the university on the investments of its endowment. Critics who reviewed the newspaper’s computational and statistical analysis said Michigan’s approach of investing with some of its top donors, who also help guide the university's endowment, creates a conflict. After the publication of more than a dozen stories throughout 2018, the university reformed its conflict-of-interest rules; its president apologized for a lack in oversight; a member of its board of regents returned more than $20,000 in campaign contributions from an investment fund leader; and voters ousted both board incumbents running for re-election.
  • The Center for Public Integrity: Local Voters, Distant Donors

    The Local Voters, Distant Donors series examined how support from across state lines shaped 2018’s elections as political redistricting decisions loom.
  • ProPublica: Unprotected

    Katie Meyler leveraged the internet and a compelling story to launch a charity to educate vulnerable Liberian girls and save them from sexual exploitation. ProPublica revealed how, as Meyler gained international plaudits and fundraised over $8 million, girls as young as 10 were being raped by founding staff member Macintosh Johnson, with whom Meyler had a sexual relationship. The charity then misled donors and the public about what had happened, failed to safeguard all his possible victims even once they knew Johnson had AIDS when he died, and later abandoned to prostitution at least one of the girls who had testified against him in court.
  • Michigan State University: Capital expenditure

    This project analyzed 2017 campaign finance data reported by Michigan state lawmakers. The initial intent was to determine how much of those funds came from special interest Political Action Committees rather than individual contributions. It blossomed into 10 stories that looked at such things as the difference in fundraising patterns between men and women, Republicans and Democrats. It ranked the partisanship of the state’s PACs, the largest PAC donors, the lawmakers who received the most and least, those who used the most of their own money and those who used no money at all. It discovered that the NRA spends very little on individual state lawmakers and those who break campaign finance laws rarely get hefty fines.
  • In Donors We Trust

    Everyone knows that college is more and more expensive to attend. So why are college and university endowments skyrocketing and now worth more than $567 billion? We started with the University of Michigan, lauded as one of the world’s best public universities which had stockpiled an endowment worth more than $11 billion. We found that university officials invested a good chunk of that endowment – one of the country’s largest among public institutions - in hundreds of private funds across the world. More importantly, our months-long investigation identified a select group who had secretly benefited: top university donors and alumni investment advisers who run private equity, hedge and venture capital funds and real estate investment firms. After our stories published throughout 2018, the university changed its investment policies; rerouted nearly $2 million into more student aid; made new investments based in the state; publicly released university executive compensation information after losing a FOIA lawsuit brought by the Free Press; and saw two university regents (i.e., trustees) lose their elections in November to those who promised more financial transparency and accountability based on our reporting.
  • Big Money, Unlikely Donors

    Los Angeles Times journalists combined shoe-leather reporting with sophisticated digital tools to unravel the tangled web of political donors linked to a controversial $72-million apartment project, resulting in enhanced scrutiny.
  • Charity Caught on Camera

    As an Indiana charity collected $7 million in donations, this undercover WTHR investigation exposed stunning mismanagement that violated public trust. Months of surveillance and undercover video revealed (literally) tons of food and donations intended for the homeless shelter never made it to the homeless at all. Instead, much of the food went directly to the charity’s leaders – some of the most respected and powerful clergy in the community – who took the food for themselves, their friends, their family members, and even for their pets. The managerial abuses, neglect and dangerous living conditions uncovered by WTHR’s 13 Investigates team prompted immediate resignations, ongoing local and state investigations, and significant changes to protect the charity’s homeless residents and its donors. http://www.wthr.com/tags/grant-county-rescue-mission-13-investigates
  • Bird-dogging the Buffalo Billion

    Gov. Andrew Cuomo launched the "Buffalo Billion" program in 2012 with the intention of revitalizing the Western New York economy. Investigative Post's reporting documented the extraordinary lengths to which Cuomo administration has gone to withhold disclosure of how the $1 billion is being spent. Our reporting also revealed that lucrative development contracts were awarded to major donors to Cuomo's campaign committee and that SolarCity, the major beneficiary of the state's spending, is losing vast amounts of money and under federal investigation. Subsequent reporting detailed that minority hiring goals for the SolarCity project, involving the construction of a $750 million solar panel manufacturing plant, were lowered and that African Americans made up less than 6 percent of the workforce.
  • Business Donors Shunning McCain for Democratic Candidates

    Republican corporate donors in 2004 are now giving to Democrats or not at all.