FIJ Awards Grants to Investigative Journalists

WASHINGTON – (January 25, 2011) With financial support from our newest donors – the Gannett Foundation and the Green Park Foundation – the Board of Directors of the Fund for Investigative Journalism has awarded twelve grants to journalists investigating abuse of power, environmental degradation, and corruption in the United States, Asia, Africa, and South America.

The board awarded $43,000 in grants to cover travel and other reporting expenses for investigative stories that otherwise would not be told. The Fund also has received significant support from the Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation to make grants for local and regional stories, many with national implications, and for investigations by ethnic media.

The Fund has supported investigative journalism by independent journalists since 1969. Recently, projects completed with FIJ support include “The Afterlife of Electronics,” an investigation of toxic waste created –  rather than properly disposed  –  by recycling operations in the state of Colorado. The report by I-Team: The Rocky Mountain Investigative News Network tells how electronic waste gets dumped overseas or acquired by backyard operations that generate more hazardous waste as amateurs attempt to mine gold out of computer junk.

The book Biocidal, written with FIJ support, was recently published, telling the history of PBCs. The book focuses on the manipulation of regulatory agencies and the continuing environmental damage since PCBs were banned. And from East Africa, the story of hazardous agricultural chemicals that continued to be imported from America for sale in developing countries, long after they were banned in the West.  Read more about FIJ-supported projects at where the next deadline for applications will be posted.

The most recent awards were granted to the following journalists:

Bob Butler, California-based investigative reporter

Lynne DeLucia, the Connecticut Health Investigative Team

Matt Jenkins, contributing editor, High Country News

Rita Henley Jensen, Women’s eNews

Jennifer Margulis, Oregon-based author, lecturer, narrative non-fiction writer, editor

Maggie Mulvihill, The New England Center for Investigative Reporting

Hella Winston, New York based freelance writer

Scott Carney, California-based investigative reporter and author

Mauricio Monteiro Filho, Brazilian reporter and documentary filmmaker

Dan Grossman, science and environmental writer and contributor, National Geographic News Watch

Kristin Palitza, photojournalist and writer based in South Africa

Hilke Schellmann and Habiba Nosheen, multi-media journalists

The topics of grantees’ investigations are confidential until completed. In addition to critical funding,  grantees receive editorial guidance from mentors through a partnership with Investigative Reporters and Editors.

The work of FIJ grantees is accomplished with the generous support from individuals, and with grants from foundations including the Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation, the Park Foundation, the Green Park Foundation, and the Gannett Foundation.

The Fund for Investigative Journalism is an independent, non-profit organization that has supported hundreds of public service reporting projects since 1969, when it provided funding for Seymour Hersh to investigate a tip about the massacre of Vietnamese civilians in My Lai. His stories won the Pulitzer Prize.

Journalists with questions about the grant application process are encouraged to contact executive director Sandy Bergo by phone, 202-391-0206, or email, [email protected].