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Dart Center Honors "Finding Oscar" Investigation

The Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma announced today that ProPublica and our partners This American Life and Fundación MEPI won the Award for Excellence in Coverage of Trauma for our joint “Finding Oscar” and “What Happened at Dos Erres” stories.  This is the third time ProPublica has been honored with a Dart Center Award.

The pieces tell the story of Oscar Ramírez Castañeda and how he survived a 1982 massacre in Dos Erres, Guatemala, after he was kidnapped and raised by one of the killers. A determined prosecutor eventually solved the mystery and obtained guilty verdicts for some of the commandos involved in the atrocity, all while helping Oscar learn the truth about his past and leading to a reunion with his real father who also had survived.

In the Dart Center announcement, the judges called the narrative "'wonderfully gripping' and 'utterly remarkable' in its level of complexity, engagement and impact. They praised the variety of 'delicately-balanced storytelling techniques,' 'astute interviewing' and 'range of voices and perspectives' that created a 'riveting' and 'revealing' narrative about perpetrators, victims and justice. They commented on the 'unusual strength' of the online, radio and multimedia components, and commended the 'transnational and transcultural collaboration' between ProPublica, Fundación MEPI and This American Life, calling it a model for innovative reporting on human rights."

Read more about the Dart Center Awards here and congratulations to all the winners and finalists.

Mike Webb

Mike Webb was the vice president/communications of ProPublica. He is a veteran communications specialist with experience in public relations, marketing, sales and campaign work at media companies, think tanks, political organizations and in the entertainment business.

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