December 6, 2010

Letter from the Executive Editor

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Dear InvestigateWest members and friends,

Thanks to you, InvestigateWesthas had a tremendous year, reporting life-changing stories about issues that affect the Pacific Northwest:

  • ·         Healthcare workers exposed to toxic chemotherapy drugs
  • ·         Cruise ship pollution and the industry’s impact on local environments
  • ·         Young adults and school children who are the new face of homelessness
  •       Sexual assault on college campuses
  •       Toxic parking lot sealants that threaten human health

Our work – stories, photos, audio and video – has been published by more than 20 national and regional media partners, ranging from MSNBC.comand AOLNews.comto The Seattle Times, The Spokesman-Reviewand The Oregonian. Our stories have run on seattlepi.com, Crosscut.com and thetyee.ca in Vancouver, B.C., and as well as in newspapers in Everett, Bremerton, Yakima and Walla Walla. Our reporting has been broadcast on KUOW-FMand KCTS 9.

Understandably, we’re proud. The Columbia Journalism Reviewcalled InvestigateWest “the new pioneers of the West,” and said we’re “changing paths and blazing trails” in the news business. That’s exactly what we’re doing, and we need your help.  

Join InvestigateWest todayand become our partner in telling stories that would otherwise go untold. We hope to add 200 names to our membership rolls in the next two weeks. That’s $12,000 – ambitious, yes, but so are three important investigative stories nearing completion.

Investigative journalism isn’t cheap, but the payoffs are priceless. Consider this: Three memberships will buy the public health records we need to document shocking differences in life expectancies due to environmental factors. Five memberships will underwrite a story about regional transportation safety that you’ll think about every time you get on an airplane. Three more will put gasoline in the tank so our reporters can examine development and pollution issues around the state. A donation of $1,500 will provide support for groundbreaking video reports like this oneon homeless young adults hit hard by the recession, a failing foster care system and fallout from the drug wars.

Major foundations have recognized the growing importance of independent regional journalism and responded. The Bullitt Foundation, Ethics and Excellence in Journalism, The Russell Family Foundation, and The Brainerd Foundation have agreed that InvestigateWest is worthy of investment, an investment in the civic health of the community. Won’t you do the same?

In July, InvestigateWest told the story of healthcare workers exposed to chemotherapy on the job.

 

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Already, 2011 is shaping up to be a big year for InvestigateWest. We have big stories to tell, stories that will change your life. We want to involve you in telling those stories, and give you ways to engage your decision-makers and leaders on issues that matter. New projects addressing the health of the environment and your communities are on our agenda.

 

For as little as $5 a month, you cansupport InvestigateWestand help keep watchdog journalism on the prowl in the Pacific Northwest. Find all our work on our site, www.invw.org, and follow us on Facebookand Twitter (@invw).  And don’t hesitate to send feedback and story ideas my way. We welcome your input and energy as we grow and move forward.

 

All best for a wonderful holiday season,

 

Rita Hibbard

Executive Director

InvestigateWest: Journalism for the Common Good

 

P.S. Every donation is tax deductible because InvestigateWest is registered 501©3.

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