ProPublica’s Local Reporting Network began in January 2018 after our staff thought about how we could help to remedy the lack of investigative reporting at the local level. Many local news organizations are facing enormous financial strain and cutbacks; they want to do deeper accountability coverage but simply don’t have the resources. That issue is exacerbated by the fact that the strongest accountability reporting these days often relies on a mix of specialized skills that can be scarce in local newsrooms, including data, research, design and social media.
Our partners’ stories have made a real difference in their communities, and their work has been recognized nationally with prestigious journalism awards. One of our partners, the Anchorage Daily News, won the 2020 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service for our collaboration that examined sexual violence in Alaska.
We now partner with more than 20 newsrooms across the country, and we will be accepting new applications in the coming months. You can learn more about our previous work below. Sign up here to get updates.
Here’s information on how to apply.
Projects Underway and Launching Soon
Anchorage Daily News
Reporter: Kyle Hopkins
Arizona Daily Star
Reporter: Amy Silverman
Reporter: Alden Woods
Asbury Park Press
Neptune, New Jersey
Reporter: Andrew Ford
Bay City News Foundation
Reporter: Scott Morris
The Business Journal
Reporter: Dan O’Brien
Reporter: Danielle Ohl
The Daily Herald
Arlington Heights, Illinois
Reporter: David Bernstein
The Desert Sun
Palm Springs, California
Reporter: Janet Wilson
Reporter: Brianna Bailey
Georgia Health News
Reporter: Max Blau
Reporter: Rob Perez
Reporter: Sophie Cocke
Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting
Reporter: R.G. Dunlop
Reporter: Carol Marbin Miller
MLK50: Justice Through Journalism
Reporter: Wendi C. Thomas
New Mexico In Depth
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Reporter: Bryant Furlow
Oregon Public Broadcasting
Reporter: Tony Schick
Palm Beach Post
Palm Beach, Florida
Reporter: Lulu Ramadan
Pine Tree Watch
Reporter: Samantha Hogan
Reporter: Patrick Wilson
Reporter: Shannon Heffernan
Previous Partners and Projects
Unchecked Power: The Extraordinary Power of Alabama Sheriffs
Reckon by AL.com
Reporter: Connor Sheets
Invisible Walls: Connecticut’s Separate and Unequal Housing
Reporter: Jacqueline Rabe Thomas
The Real Bosses of New Jersey: How Unelected Officials Run Your Government
New York, New York
Reporter: Nancy Solomon
The Untouchables: Investigating South Carolina’s Judges
The Post and Courier
Charleston, South Carolina
Reporter: Joseph Cranney
Locked Down: An Investigation of Mississippi’s Prisons
Mississippi Center for Investigative Reporting
Reporter: Jerry Mitchell
Profiting From the Poor: Inside Memphis’ Debt Machine
Reporter: Wendi C. Thomas
Miswired: How Kentucky Missed the Technology Revolution
Reporter: Alfred Miller
Polluter’s Paradise: Environmental Impact in Louisiana
The New Orleans Advocate/The Times-Picayune
New Orleans, Louisiana
Reporter: Joan Meiners
Campus Complicity: Faculty Sexual Misconduct in Illinois
Reporter: Rachel Otwell
Louisiana’s Ethical Swamp: Lawmakers’ Conflicts of Interest
The New Orleans Advocate
New Orleans, Louisiana
Reporter: Rebekah Allen
A Sick System: Repeat Attacks After Pleading Insanity
The Malheur Enterprise Malheur County, Oregon
Reporter: Jayme Fraser
The New Power Brokers: West Virginia’s Natural Gas Industry
Charleston, West Virginia
Reporter: Ken Ward Jr.
Awards and Impact
The impact of our Local Reporting Network has been extraordinary.
The Anchorage Daily News, in a first-of-its-kind investigation, found that one in three communities in Alaska has no local law enforcement: no state troopers to stop an active shooter, no village police officers to break up family fights, not even untrained city or tribal cops to patrol the streets. Following that coverage, U.S. Attorney General William P. Barr visited Alaska and later declared a state of emergency, releasing millions in federal funds to devote to the problem.
MLK50, a nonprofit news organization in Memphis, Tennessee, reported on how the area’s largest hospital system sued and garnished the wages of thousands of poor patients, including its own employees, for unpaid medical debts. The hospital subsequently curtailed its lawsuits against patients for unpaid medical debts, dramatically expanded its financial assistance policy for hospital care and raised the minimum wage it pays employees.
In Indiana, the South Bend Tribune, working with ProPublica senior reporter Ken Armstrong, reported in 2018 on how police officers in Elkhart beat a handcuffed man and about how the police chief promoted officers despite records of discipline. As a result of those articles, the police chief was forced to resign, an independent investigation was launched and the officers involved in the beating were criminally charged. The mayor of Elkhart also abandoned his reelection effort.
In Rhode Island, The Public’s Radio reported how 911 call takers were not trained to provide CPR instructions by phone and about people who died after those call takers failed to give proper guidance. The state legislature added money for training to the state budget.
And WNYC reported on how a company in Camden, New Jersey, provided a false answer on an application for tax breaks, leading the state to freeze the tax break pending further investigation.
You can find more information on the impact section of our website