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KDMC Alums Receive $100,000 to Fund Investigative News Start-Up

KDMC alum Rita Hibbard who leads the Seattle news start-up InvestigateWest was awarded a $100,000 grant from the Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation (EEJF). Hibbard, a graduate of the KDMC@USC Entrepreneur Boot Camp and the December 2009 KDMC@UCB Web 2.0 Tech Tools for Journalists Workshop, said in a public announcement that the award was like an "Olympic gold" and a "big accomplishment" for her investigative team, which includes Robert McClure, a graduate of the KDMC January 2010 Multimedia Reporting Workshop.

InvestigateWest was started in July 2009 by a small band of veteran journalists laid-off from the Seattle Post-Intelligencer when the news organization shuttered its print edition and moved to becoming an online only publication. InvestigateWest produces in-depth, independent reporting on environmental, social justice and health issues centered around the Pacific North West and the West.

In a statement about the award to InvestigateWest, Bob Ross, CEO of EEJF said they set aside money this year specifically to support investigative journalism. "The watchdog role of legacy media is in jeopardy due to the economic crisis facing the journalism industry," Ross said. "We're working to secure the future of watchdog journalism by funding investigative reporting models of innovation, sustainability and collaboration."

The Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation provides support for the KDMC training workshops.