IRE favicon

Jennifer Leonard Scholarship

Provides assistance to the Virtual NICAR Conference, March 3-5, 2021 or the IRE Conference, June 17-20, 2021.

Description

Established by IRE member David Cay Johnston to honor his wife, Jennifer Leonard, the president of the Rochester Area Community Foundation and a national leader in promoting ethical standards for endowments.

In the early 1980s, Leonard exposed how corporations blackballed various charities in 16 cities. She tried to get the newspapers in these towns to pay attention, but only two followed up on her article for a little magazine called The Grantsmanship Center News.

Leonard also wrote what may be the first published list of how grantors should apply the Golden Rule to grant seekers. Later, hoping to stir better coverage of nonprofits and their role in the quality of communities, she and her husband co–wrote a piece for the Columbia Journalism Review on how to cover nonprofits as hard news. The couple also wrote exposés of charities and Hollywood films that sold lies as truth.

Deadline for NICAR Conference: Feb. 2, 2021

Deadline for IRE Conference: April 19, 2021

Apply online

Who is eligible?

Women of modest means who are college journalism students or early-career professional journalists (three years or less of post-college work experience). Women of color are encouraged to apply.

What does the fellowship provide?

  • One-year IRE membership/renewal ($70 value)
  • Complimentary conference registration ($125-315 value)
  • Up to three hotel nights for the IRE conference ($750-900 value)
  • Travel stipend for the IRE conference ($500)

Required application materials:

  • LinkedIn page or link to resume
  • Links to two clips showcasing investigative work
  • Letter of support from supervisor/appropriate person to attend the conference. Letter should include why you are deserving of a scholarship to receive this training.
  • Link to college transcript (for students only)
  • Statement on financial need
How to donate to IRE's Endowment

The Jennifer Leonard Scholarships are funded with a pledge being paid over 20 years, plus matching funds from friends and The New York Times Company Foundation — all of which were matched by the Knight Foundation through a challenge grant awarded to IRE. The number of scholars is expected to double once the pledge is fulfilled.

“Giving to the IRE Endowment can have a big impact with a modest level of giving over time,” Johnston said. His gifts of $2,100 per year, before the income tax deduction, and the matching funds will eventually provide the IRE Endowment with more than $100,000.

Anyone wishing to contribute to the fellowship may donate to the IRE endowment and write “Leonard Scholarship Fund” in the donation note.

To donate, contact Heather Feldmann Henry, IRE’s Financial Officer, at 573-994-7902 or heatherf@ire.org

141 Neff Annex   |   Missouri School of Journalism Columbia, MO 65211   |   573-882-2042   |   info@ire.org   |   Privacy Policy
chevron-downcrossmenu linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram