ProPublica Completes Initial Staffing
New York, N.Y. (Sept. 2, 2008)—ProPublica, a non-profit newsroom producing journalism in the public interest, today announced three additions to its news staff and awarded its first fellowships. T. Christian Miller, staff writer of the Los Angeles Times, joins ProPublica as a reporter, Dan Nguyen, reporter/web developer for the Sacramento Bee, joins as web producer, and Lisa Schwartz joins as research director. Additionally, Sharona Coutts and Benjamin Protess, who had been interns at ProPublica, were named fellows, with nine-month appointments.
Paul E. Steiger, editor-in-chief of ProPublica, said, “These very talented people are the final hires for our initial news team. We’re very pleased with the staff we’ve assembled, and we’re excited to be getting up to full speed.”
ProPublica has the largest news staff in American journalism devoted solely to investigative reporting. ProPublica is supported entirely by philanthropy and will provide the articles it produces, free of charge, both through its own Web site and to leading news organizations selected with an eye toward maximizing the impact of each major article.
Stephen Engelberg, managing editor of ProPublica, added, “Now that our full news team is in place, we’re gearing up to produce more investigative stories with ‘moral force.’ We have several pieces that we’re close to finalizing and many more in development. By the end of the year, we hope to have partnered with perhaps a half dozen media outlets to get those stories to the public.”
T. Christian Miller has reported for the Los Angeles Times since 1997. His work has included coverage of the 2000 presidential campaign and three years as bureau chief for the Times in 10 countries in South and Central America. Earlier in his career he worked for the San Francisco Chronicle and the St. Petersburg Times. He has received an Overseas Press Club award, a Livingston Award for Young Journalists, and the John B. Oakes Award for Distinguished Environmental Reporting. Miller is the author of Blood Money: Wasted Billions, Lost Lives, and Corporate Greed in Iraq.
Dan Nguyen has worked as a reporter, Web programmer and multimedia producer for the Sacramento Bee where he worked to build online features for the paper since 2005. His design and programming work on multimedia projects won awards from Editor and Publisher and the National Council on Crime and Delinquency.
Lisa Schwartz is a freelance researcher who worked on staff for ABC News from 2001 through 2007. In her role there, she provided material for World News Tonight, Good Morning America, ABC News Now and Brian Ross’ Investigative Unit. Prior to her work at ABC, she served as a freelance journalist and reporter for a number of different newspapers, and worked in various roles in the advertising industry.
Sharona Coutts recently graduated with honors from Columbia Journalism School’s investigative seminar. A law graduate in her native Australia, she clerked for a Justice of the High Court of Australia before moving into investigative reporting. She has worked for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, freelanced for the BBC and written for numerous magazines and the New York Times.
Benjamin Protess is a graduate of the Columbia University Journalism School’s investigative reporting fellowship and worked for a community newspaper in Chicago and as part of the investigative unit of CBS News in Chicago. Protess received his bachelor’s degree from Northwestern University where he worked for the Medill Innocence Project.
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