Documents/ProP

About Us

Strategic_Plan

Publication: 2013-08-30

Source: http://www.propublica.org/about/

It is true that the number and variety of publishing platforms are exploding in the Internet age. But very few of these entities are engaged in original reporting. In short, we face a situation in which sources of opinion are proliferating, but sources of facts on which those opinions are based are shrinking. The former phenomenon is almost certainly, on balance, a societal good; the latter is surely a problem.

More than any other journalistic form, investigative journalism can require a great deal of time and labor to do well -- and because the "prospecting" necessary for such stories inevitably yields a substantial number of "dry holes," i.e. stories that seem promising at first, but ultimately prove either less interesting or important than first thought, or even simply untrue and thus unpublishable.

Submitter:

Name:Owen Ambur

Email:Owen.Ambur@verizon.net

Organization:

Name:ProPublica

Acronym:PP

Description:
ProPublica is an independent, non-profit newsroom that produces investigative journalism in the public interest. Our work focuses exclusively on truly important stories, stories with "moral force." We do this by producing journalism that shines a light on exploitation of the weak by the strong and on the failures of those with power to vindicate the trust placed in them... ProPublica is headquartered in Manhattan. Its establishment was announced in October 2007. Operations commenced in January 2008, and publishing began in June 2008... ProPublica is a non-profit corporation, and is exempt from taxes under Section 501(c)(3). It has its own Governing Board, of which Herbert Sandler is founding chairman and Mr. Steiger is executive chairman. A Journalism Advisory Board of leaders in the field, and a Business Advisory Council has also been assembled.

Stakeholder(s):

  • Paul SteigerProPublica was founded by Paul Steiger, the former managing editor of The Wall Street Journal.

  • Stephen EngelbergIt is now led by Stephen Engelberg, a former managing editor of The Oregonian, Portland, Oregon and former investigative editor of The New York Times, and Richard Tofel, the former assistant publisher of The Wall Street Journal.

  • Richard Tofel

  • ProPublica JournalistsWe have a newsroom of about 40 working journalists, all of them dedicated to investigative reporting on stories with significant potential for major impact.

  • News OrganizationsGiven these realities, many news organizations have increasingly come to see investigative journalism as a luxury that can be put aside in tough economic times. Moreover, at many media institutions, time and budget constraints are curbing the once significant ability of journalists not specifically designated "investigative" to do this kind of reporting in addition to handling their regular beats.

  • Sandler FoundationThe Sandler Foundation made a major, multi-year commitment to fund ProPublica at launch. Other philanthropic contributions have been received as well, and more are needed.

  • AdvertisersProPublica also accepts advertising.

  • ProPublica Governing Board

  • Paul SteigerExecutive Chairman -- Paul E. Steiger was the founding editor-in-chief, CEO and president of ProPublica from 2008 through 2012. As Executive Chairman beginning Jan. 1, 2013, he remains actively involved in strategic issues, development, representing ProPublica in public venues, and consulting with management on business and editorial issues as needed and on a part-time basis. Steiger served as the managing editor of the Wall Street Journal from 1991 to 2007. During his tenure, members of the Journal's newsroom staff were awarded 16 Pulitzer Prizes. In addition, ProPublica reporters received Pulitzer Prizes in May 2010 and 2011. He is a member of the steering committee of the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, based in Arlington, Va., which provides free legal assistance to journalists. He is a trustee of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, based in Miami, that funds efforts to enhance journalism and the functioning of American communities. From 1999 to 2007, he was a member of the Pulitzer Prize Board, serving as its chairman in his final year. For six years, from June 2005 to June 2011, Steiger was the chairman of the Committee to Protect Journalists, a New York-based nonprofit that advocates for press freedom around the globe. Awards include the Columbia Journalism Award, the University of Missouri Honor Award for Distinguished Service in Journalism, the Goldsmith Career Award for Excellence in Journalism from Harvard University's Joan Shorenstein Center, the Gerald Loeb Award for lifetime achievement from the John E. Anderson Graduate School of Management at UCLA, the Dean's Medal for Distinguished Leadership from Brandeis University, the Fourth Estate Award from the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., the National Press Foundation's George Beveridge Editor of the Year Award, the Decade of Excellence Award from the World Leadership Forum in London, and the American Society of News Editors Leadership Award. Steiger worked for 15 years as a reporter, the Washington economics correspondent, and the business editor for the Los Angeles Times, and for 26 years as a reporter and editor for the Wall Street Journal. He received a bachelor's degree in economics from Yale University in 1964.

  • Herbert SandlerFounding Chairman -- Mr. Sandler and his late wife, Marion, founded Golden West Financial Corporation in 1963. They were Golden West's chief executive officers and chairmen of the board from 1963 until 2006, when the company was sold to Wachovia Corporation. Under the Sandlers' leadership, Golden West became the second-largest thrift institution in the United States and was considered to be one of the best managed financial institutions in the country by many industry observers. Fortune magazine ranked Golden West as the nation's most admired mortgage services company, and on seven separate occasions named Golden West America's most admired savings institution. Morningstar, a leading provider of investment research, named the Sandlers CEOs of the Year in 2004. Mr. Sandler is currently president of the Sandler Foundation.

  • Mark ColodnyMark M. Colodny is a managing director of Warburg Pincus. He joined Warburg Pincus in 2001 and is co-head of the technology, media and telecommunications team. Mr. Colodny also is a member of the firm's executive management group. Previously, he served as senior vice president of corporate development at Primedia, where he ran the mergers and acquisitions group. Mr. Colodny began his career as a journalist at Fortune magazine. He is a director of A Place for Mom, Evidon, iParadigms, Liaison International, MultiView, OnTargetJobs and Slickdeals, and is also chair of ProPublica's Business Advisory Council. He received an A.B. from Harvard University, an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School and a J.D. from Harvard Law School.

  • Henry Louis Gates, Jr.Henry Louis Gates, Jr., is the W. E. B. Du Bois Professor of the Humanities and the Director of the W. E. B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research at Harvard University. Professor Gates is also Editor-in-Chief of the Oxford African American Studies Center, the first comprehensive scholarly online resource in the field of African American Studies and Africana Studies. He is co-editor with K. Anthony Appiah of the encyclopedia Encarta Africana published on CD-ROM by Microsoft (1999), and in book form by Basic Civitas Books under the title Africana: The Encyclopedia of the African and African American Experience (1999). His most recent books are America Behind the Color Line: Dialogues with African Americans (Warner Books, 2004), African American Lives, co-edited with Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham (Oxford, 2004), and The Annotated Uncle Tom's Cabin, edited with Hollis Robbins (W. W. Norton, 2006). In 2006, Professor Gates wrote and produced the PBS documentary also called "African American Lives," the first documentary series to employ genealogy and science to provide an understanding of African American history. He also wrote and produced the documentaries "Wonders of the African World" (2000) and "America Beyond the Color Line" (2004) for the BBC and PBS, and authored the companion volumes to both series. Professor Gates is currently at work on a sequel to "African American Lives." Professor Gates is the author of several works of literary criticism, including Figures in Black: Words, Signs and the "Racial" Self (Oxford University Press, 1987); and The Signifying Monkey: A Theory of Afro-American Literary Criticism(Oxford, 1988), winner of the American Book Award in 1989. He authenticated and facilitated the publication, in 2002, of The Bondwoman's Narrative by Hannah Crafts, the only known novel by a female African American slave and possibly the first novel by an African American woman. He is the co-author, with Cornel West, of The Future of the Race (Knopf, 1996), and the author of a memoir, Colored People (Knopf, 1994), that traces his childhood experiences in a small West Virginia town in the 1950s and 1960s. Professor Gates has edited several influential anthologies, including The Norton Anthology of African American Literature (W. W. Norton, 1996); and the Schomburg Library of Nineteenth Century Black Women Writers (Oxford, 1991). In addition, Professor Gates is editor of Transition magazine, an international review of African, Caribbean, and African American politics. An influential cultural critic, Professor Gates's publications include a 1994 cover story for Time magazine, numerous articles for the New Yorker, and in September 2004, a biweekly guest column in The New York Times. Professor Gates earned his M.A. and Ph.D. in English literature from Clare College at the University of Cambridge, and his B.A. summa cum laude in English language and literature from Yale University in 1973. Before joining the faculty of Harvard in 1991, he taught at Yale, Cornell, and Duke. His honors and grants include a MacArthur Foundation "genius grant" (1981), the George Polk Award for Social Commentary (1993), Time magazine's "25 Most Influential Americans" list (1997), a National Humanities Medal (1998), election to the American Academy of Arts and Letters (1999), the Jefferson Lecture (2002), and a Visiting Fellowship at the School of Social Science at the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton (2003-2004). He has received 44 honorary degrees. Professor Gates served as Chair of the Department of African and African American Studies at Harvard from 1991 to 2006.

  • Gara LaMarcheGara LaMarche is a Senior Fellow at New York University's Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service. From 2007 to 2011, he was President and Chief Executive Officer of the Atlantic Philanthropies, an international foundation that focuses on aging, children and youth, health, and human rights operating in Australia, Bermuda, Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland, South Africa, the United States, and Vietnam. During his tenure at Atlantic, the foundation made the largest grant ever made by a foundation for an advocacy campaign -- over $25 million -- to press for comprehensive health care reform in the U.S., embraced a social justice framework for grantmaking, and worked closely with new governments in many of its geographies to take advantage of opportunities to achieve changes in HIV/AIDS and nursing policies in South Africa, civic engagement and democratic reform in Ireland, a more secure peace in Northern Ireland, and many other areas. Before joining Atlantic in April 2007, Mr. LaMarche served as Vice President and Director of U.S. Programs for the Open Society Institute (OSI), a foundation established by philanthropist George Soros. Mr. LaMarche joined OSI in 1996 to launch its U.S. Programs, which focus on challenges to social justice and democracy. During his tenure there, OSI (since renamed the Open Society Foundations) became the leading funder of criminal justice reform, launched and supported a number of fellowship programs in justice, law, medicine and community engagement, established an office critical in the revitalization of Baltimore, and helped create and foster a network of urban high school debate leagues. Mr. LaMarche previously served as Associate Director of Human Rights Watch and Director of its Free Expression Project from 1990 to 1996. He was Director of the Freedom-to-Write Program of the PEN American Center from 1988 to 1990. He served in a variety of positions with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), with which he first became associated with in 1972 at age 18. Mr. LaMarche was the Associate Director of the ACLU's New York branch and the Executive Director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Texas. Mr. LaMarche is the author of numerous articles on human rights and social justice issues, and is the editor of "Speech and Equality: Do We Really Have to Choose?" (New York University Press, 1996). He teaches a course on philanthropy and public policy at NYU's Wagner School and has been an adjunct professor at New School University and the John Jay College of Criminal Justice. Mr. LaMarche has been recognized as a "Good Guy" by the Texas Women's Political Caucus and as a Voice for Justice by the Fifth Avenue Committee. He has received the John Dewey Award for Distinguished Public Service from Bard College, the Hubert H. Humphrey Civil and Human Rights Award from the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights, the Progressive Leadership Award from USAction, the President's Award from the National Council of La Raza, the Champion Award from the Center for Community Change, and the Hope Award from Providence House. Mr. LaMarche serves on the boards of StoryCorps, ProPublica, and the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy. A Westerly, Rhode Island, native, Mr. LaMarche is a graduate of Columbia College at Columbia University in New York.

  • Bobby MonksRobert C.S. Monks is a serial entrepreneur and real estate developer who has founded, lead, and grown 19 businesses in the financial services, real estate, technology, and communication sectors. He is highly regarded for creating strategic partnerships that promote shared ownership and tether profitability to economic and social development in communities across the country. Mr. Monks is a proponent of the belief that active ownership is the key to successful ventures. In 2011, Mr. Monks became an owner and Chairman of Spinnaker Trust, a Maine based trust company managing over $1 billion in assets. Spinnaker Trust provides personalized and integrated financial services primarily to high net worth families, individuals, and private foundations. Spinnaker Trust's mission is to deliver first class stewardship and wealth enhancement strategies with a global perspective. From 2001 to 2007, Mr. Monks was Chairman of Institutional Shareholder Services, the world's leading provider of proxy voting and corporate governance services. With more than 1,000 institutional and corporate clients, the company analyzes proxies and produces research and objective vote recommendations and handles electronic voting for more than 28,000 companies across 102 markets worldwide. Mr. Monks currently serves on the boards of Maine Today Media, T3i, Mediant Communications, Maine Fiber Company, Spinnaker Trust, and the Black Point Corporation. He is also a founder and owner of the Eagle Point Companies, Dirigo Management Company, Monks O'Neil Development, The Signal Group, Maine Workforce Housing, and Headwater Capital Management. He was previously a founder and Director of Atlantic Bank. Mr. Monks serves and has served on many non-profit boards including: Maine Center for Creativity, University of Southern Maine School of Business, Maine for Obama Steering and Finance Committee, Gulf of Maine Research Institute, Natural Resources Council of Maine, Maine Employers Mutual Insurance Company, Children's Museum of Maine, Spurwink Foundation, Waynflete School, and the Portland Performing Arts Center.

  • Ronald OlsonRonald L. Olson is a partner in the Los Angeles office of Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP. Mr. Olson has practiced law with the firm since 1968. Mr. Olson also is a director of Berkshire Hathaway, Edison International, City National Corporation, The Washington Post Company and Western Asset Trusts. He serves as a director of several non-profits, including the RAND Corporation (formerly chair), the Mayo Clinic, and the California Institute of Technology. He counsels individual executives and boards of directors in a range of matters, including numerous high profile transaction, corporate governance and litigation matters. Mr. Olson received his B.S. degree from Drake University in 1963, his J.D. from the University of Michigan in 1966 and a Diploma in Law from Oxford University, England, in 1967, at which time he was the recipient of a Ford Foundation fellowship.

  • Paul SaganPaul Sagan, Executive Vice Chairman of Akamai Technologies, joined the company in October 1998. Mr. Sagan was elected to the Akamai Board of Directors in January 2005, and he became CEO in April 2005 and served as chief executive through 2012. He also served as President of Akamai from May 1999 until September 2010, and again from October 2011 through December 2012. Previously, Mr. Sagan served as senior advisor to the World Economic Forum from 1997 to 1998, consulting to the Geneva-based organization on information technology for the world's 1,000 foremost multinational corporations. In 1995, Mr. Sagan was named president and editor of new media at Time Inc., a division of Time Warner, and worked in that position until 1997. Previously, he served as managing editor of Time Warner's News on Demand project and was a senior member of the team responsible for the development of the company's online business activities. He was a founder of Road Runner, the world's first broadband cable modem service, and Pathfinder, one of the early Web properties that pioneered Internet advertising. Mr. Sagan joined Time Warner in 1991 as senior vice president of cable programming to design and launch NY 1 News, the cable news network based in New York City. NY 1 became known for its use of digital video technology and video journalists carrying their own small-format cameras. His career began in broadcast television news. He joined WCBS-TV in 1981 as a news writer and was named news director in 1987. President Obama appointed Mr. Sagan to the President's National Security Telecommunications Advisory Committee in 2010. He is a three-time Emmy Award winner for broadcast journalism in New York, a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences since 2008, and the 2009 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year in the technology category. In 1996 he was named a Global Leader for Tomorrow by the World Economic Forum. Mr. Sagan is a director of Massachusetts-based EMC Corp. (NYSE: EMC) and iRobot Corp. (NASDAQ: IRBT), and previously served as a director of Dow Jones & Company, Digitas Inc., and Maven Networks before they were acquired. He is a trustee of Northwestern University; a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern; co-chairman of the Medill Board of Advisors; a member of the MIT Visiting Committee in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science; a member of the Dean's Council at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University; and a member of the advisory board of the Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics & Public Policy at the Kennedy School. He was a member of the Knight Commission on the Information Needs of Communities in a Democracy.

  • Kat TaylorKat Taylor's life has been dedicated to serving social justice and environmental health. Kat is active in a variety of social business, public benefit and philanthropic ventures in the San Francisco Bay Area. Currently, she focuses on beneficial banking services as CEO of One PacificCoast Bank, a CDFI whose mission is to bring beneficial banking to low-income communities in an economically and environmentally sustainable manner. One PacificCoast Bank is the result of a merger between OneCalifornia Bank, which Kat and her husband, Tom Steyer, founded in Oakland, CA, and ShoreBank Pacific, with offices in Oregon and Washington. The bank's revolutionary ownership design requires that its profits be invested in the communities it serves. Kat is also a Founding Director of TomKat Ranch Educational Foundation (TKREF) dedicated to sustainable food production through ranching, tours, research, and school lunch and garden programs. TKREF owns the social business LeftCoast GrassFed, which raises cattle in ways good for people and planet. Kat serves and has served on many non-profit boards including Good Samaritan Family Resource Center, Insight Prison Project, KQED, CuriOdyssey, and Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. She matriculated from Harvard College and earned a JD/MBA from Stanford. Kat and Tom have four children and reside in San Francisco.

  • Tom UntermanTom Unterman is the Managing Partner of Rustic Canyon Partners, which he founded in 1999 after a long career as a corporate executive and prior to that, a corporate lawyer. From 1992 through 1999, he held several executive positions at the Times Mirror Company, most recently as its Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. Prior to joining Times Mirror, Tom was a partner of the law firm of Morrison & Foerster LLP, which he joined after serving as a partner of Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP. He earned his bachelor's degree from Princeton University before receiving his law degree from the University of Chicago. In addition to serving as a director of several of Rustic Canyon's portfolio companies, Tom currently serves on the boards of The California Community Foundation, CalArts, and Heal the Bay.

  • ProPublica Journalism Advisory Board

  • Jill Abramsonexecutive editor, The New York Times

  • David Boardmanexecutive editor, The Seattle Times

  • Raymond T. Bonnerwriter living in London

  • Robert A. Carohistorian and biographer of Robert Moses and Lyndon Johnson

  • John S. Carrollformer editor of the Los Angeles Times and the Baltimore Sun

  • L. Gordon Crovitz,former publisher of The Wall Street Journal, partner, Journalism Online

  • David Gergenprofessor of public service, Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government and director of its Center for Public Leadership

  • Tom Goldsteindirector, Media Studies Program, University of California, Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism

  • Isaac Leepresident, news, Univision

  • Shawn McIntoshpublic editor, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

  • Ellen Millerexecutive director, The Sunlight Foundation

  • Priscilla Paintonexecutive editor, non-fiction, Simon & Schuster

  • David Shribmanexecutive editor, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

  • Allan Sloansenior editor at large, Fortune magazine

  • Kerry Smithsenior vice president for editorial quality, ABC News

  • Cynthia A. Tuckercolumnist, Universal Press Syndicate

  • ProPublica Business Advisory Council

  • Mark ColodnyChair, Managing Director, Warburg Pincus LLC

  • Joanna Stone HermanVice Chair

  • Theodore J. Boutrous Jr.Partner, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP

  • Ben BoydGlobal Chair, Corporate Practice, Edelman

  • David CoulterManaging Director, Warburg Pincus LLC

  • Sean FielerGeneral Partner, Equinox Partners

  • Maria GotschPresident & CEO, NYC Investment Fund

  • Dave GoldbergCEO, SurveyMonkey

  • Jack GriffinCEO, Empirical Strategic Advisors

  • Michael HansenCEO, Cengage Learning

  • Mellody HobsonPresident, Ariel Investments

  • Lori E. LesserPartner, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP

  • Martin MaleskaAdvisory Director, Investcorp International Inc.

  • Reed Phillips IIIManaging Partner, DeSilva+Phillips

  • William PollakBoard Chair, Pro Bono Net

  • Lawrence RandPresident and CEO, Kekst and Company

  • Davia TeminPresident and CEO, Temin & Company

  • Gregory WaldorfCEO-in-Residence, Accel Partners