Lauren Fuhrmann promoted to WCIJ associate director

Lauren Fuhrmann has been promoted to associate director of the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism. Fuhrmann, who joined the Center in 2011, was promoted from public engagement director to associate director in recognition of her growing responsibilities and outstanding performance, Executive Director Andy Hall said. “Lauren’s willingness to tackle new challenges, and to stretch her skills, have helped the Center, and its counterparts across the nation, to produce better journalism and improve the measurement of its impact,” Hall said. Fuhrmann leads WCIJ’s public engagement efforts, including events, social media, newsletter and promotional materials; is co-director of the website; tracks the distribution and assesses the impact of WCIJ’s news stories; assists with development of donors and writing of grant reports; handles bookkeeping duties; and produces photos, audio and video content. In 2013, she was among five young leaders in the inaugural group of “Future Headliners” honored by the Wisconsin Newspaper Association. Continue Reading

Center’s Ron Seely wins national environmental reporting award

The Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism’s Ron Seely has been selected as winner of the Sierra Club’s 2014 national reporting award. Seely, a reporter, editor and student mentor for the Center, will receive the David R. Brower Award for outstanding environmental coverage, the national Sierra Club announced this week. The award is named after the first executive director of the Sierra Club. Ellen Davis, chairwoman of the honors and awards committee for the Sierra Club, said Seely was chosen for his high-quality reporting on environmental issues spanning more than two decades, including coverage of the environmental effects of large farming operations and the proposed Gogebic Taconite mine in northern Wisconsin. “It was really for his entire career rather than a particular story,” Davis said. Continue Reading

Out of the darkness, a happy first anniversary

Eviction Attempt budget language

Exactly a year ago, the Wisconsin Legislature caught us sleeping. In a secret predawn move on June 5, 2013, legislators anonymously inserted a measure into the state budget. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s Jason Stein broke the news in a tweet at 5:19 a.m. — the moment we’re posting this update, as we reflect on the first anniversary. The entire Legislature soon approved the two-sentence provision, titled “Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism.” It would have evicted WCIJ from offices we share with our student interns on the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus, and would have made it illegal for UW employees to collaborate with WCIJ. With your help, our darkest hour became our finest hour. Continue Reading

Grant boosts investigation of Wisconsin water issues, experiment in journalism education at UW-Madison

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Wisconsin’s water quality and supply will be investigated by University of Wisconsin-Madison journalism students, the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism and others through a $35,000 grant announced by the Online News Association. The project, titled The Confluence: A Live News Experiment Covering Wisconsin Waters, connects journalism courses, WCIJ, Madison Commons, state newspapers, and public and commercial broadcast outlets, as well as volunteer citizen water monitoring. Continue Reading