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Three journalists awarded 2021 IRE Freelance Fellowship

Projects investigating Superfund sites, heat protection standards and senior care risks in Hernando County, Florida, have been awarded IRE Freelance Fellowships. The recipients of the 2021 fellowships are: 

  • Jordan Gass-Poore, first place, is a freelance journalist based in New York City. Her project will investigate companies in New Jersey who have avoided paying the government millions of dollars in Superfund clean-up costs and how communities impacted by these hazardous waste sites illustrate a broader environmental justice impact. 
  • David Nickerson, second place, is a freelance journalist based in Santa Fe, New Mexico.  His project will investigate how Federal regulators, while failing to adopt a heat-protection standard, have overlooked rogue employers and endangered workers of color in particular. 
  • Sadia Rafiquddin, third place, is a freelance reporter based in Toronto, Canada. Her project will investigate how a health care monopoly in Hernando County, Florida, is risking elderly patients care. 

The generosity of an anonymous donor has allowed IRE to award fellowships for the last 14 years. The fellowships give independent journalists a financial boost to pursue investigative work.

If you’d like to donate to the Freelance Fellowship fund, click here to make a donation. Please designate "Freelance Fellowship” in the form. 

About the award:

IRE Freelance Fellowships are awarded annually to journalists who make their living primarily as freelance/independent journalists. Applications are scrutinized by experienced freelance journalists. Proposals are judged in part on the breadth, significance and potential impact of the investigative project. At the request of the donor, proposals dealing with whistleblowers, business ethics and/or privacy issues will receive priority; projects involving other topics will be given serious consideration by the committee as well. The freelance projects are to be published or aired primarily in U.S. outlets.

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