InvestigateWest says it “rose from the ashes of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer” but prides itself on not being “limited by those roots.” Founded in July 2009, it is a nonprofit organization dedicated to investigative and narrative journalism whose mission statement says, in part:
The old model for supporting and conducting public service journalism has collapsed. Thousands of traditional journalism jobs have simply vanished in this region, and along with them the opportunity for the kind of in-depth, investigative reporting and memorable storytelling that keeps citizens engaged and informed about changes shaping their lives.
InvestigateWest continues the reporting essential to democracy. Our passion for investigative journalism is paired with the ambition to find and connect with new audiences using the new tools of the digital revolution now available to journalists. Investigative reporting and storytelling takes time, resources and talent that many traditional news outlets can no longer afford.
InvestigateWest was started by a group of accomplished journalists with a track record of producing investigative stories and, with them, change in public policy and corporate practice. Our mission is to cut across the old media borders to reach and engage audiences by new and powerful means. We harness the synergies of the printed word with the evocative power of photography, video and audio to produce reports used and distributed by a wide variety of news organizations, whether online, print, television or radio.
InvestigateWest is led by executive director and editor Rita Hibbard, formerly an assistant managing editor and investigative editor at the P-I. It got a $100,000 grant from the Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation in February 2010 and another in February 2011. Other funders include the Brainerd Foundation, the Bullitt Foundation, the Russell Family Foundation and the Fund for Investigative Journalism. It also solicits finds from the public.
The Columbia Journalism Review published a first anniversary review of InvestigateWest, which it called “new pioneers of the west.”
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