Investigative Reporting Workshop


The Investigative Reporting Workshop began publishing the spring of 2009.  Executive Editor Chuck Lewis was honored in 2018 with the I.F. Stone Award for journalistic independence. Our co-productions with the Washington-based FRONTLINE team, led by writer-producer Rick Young, have won numerous awards. And individuals, both at the Workshop and at our publishing partners, have also been honored for work co-reported and produced by IRW.


The Emmy Awards

The Healthcare Divide,” the most recent of many collaborations over the years among veteran FRONTLINE writer-producer Rick Young and his team, NPR and the Investigative Reporting Workshop, has been nominated for an Emmy Award for Outstanding Business, Consumer or Economic coverage. The winners will be announced on Sept. 12, 2022.

Writers Guild Award

The Healthcare Divide,” the most recent of many collaborations over the years among veteran FRONTLINE writer-producer Rick Young and his team, NPR and the Investigative Reporting Workshop, has won a Writers Guild Award.

The program, which aired in 2021, looked at disparities in American health care and the large urban hospitals hit hard by the pandemic. Reporters traveled across the country over four months to examine the market forces and uneven government support that were deepening the problems. They found widening resources between rich hospitals and those that serve the poor.

“The Healthcare Divide” won in the category of documentary scripts that tackled current events. It was written and directed by Young and produced by Emma Schwartz and Fritz Kramer. Schwartz and correspondent Laura Sullivan of NPR also reported the story, and Kramer and Adam Lingo edited. IRW/FRONTLINE Graduate Fellow Robert Boyd was a contributing reporter as well.

You can view the full program here.


Frank Morton Award from the Overseas Press Club

“Trump’s Trade War,” a FRONTLINE-NPR collaboration in association with IRW,  is the 2020 winner of the Morton Frank Award from the Overseas Press Club for best international business news reporting in TV, video, radio, audio or podcast. Young also won a Writers Guild Award, announced in February, for the same program.

The program explores the Trump administration’s motives for imposing tariffs on China and features interviews with key players and former players in the administration, including Steve Bannon, the former chief strategist under Trump, who describes the polarization inside the White House regarding trade. FRONTLINE and NPR draw parallels between China and the U.S., offering viewers a look at a competitive relationship between the two nations, which extends beyond the clash on trade. The documentary presents the U.S. business community’s hesitation to address Chinese business practices that violate trade rules and offers a look at what’s ahead for trade between the two nations.

You can watch the program and read related stories here.

Yale Environment 360 Video Award

“The Great Divide” won third place in the Yale Environment 360 Video contest, which honors the best environmental films. IRW helped fund the mini-documentary, which looks at life in Tooleville, California, where those in the mostly minority community have been living without clean water for years. Our story and the film — plus additional photos and graphics — ran in June 2020 and were co-published with the Fresno Bee. Documentarians Casey Beck and Mary Cardaras developed the film. IRW Graduate Fellow Austin R. Ramsey, IRW intern Lucas Smolcic Larson and former intern David Rodriguez reported the story from California and Washington.


Gerald Loeb Award

These annual awards, from the UCLA Anderson School of Management, recognize the work of journalists whose contributions illuminate the world of business, finance and the economy for readers and viewers around the world.

Video Winner

Blackout in Puerto Rico” by Rick Young, Laura Sullivan, Emma Schwartz, Fritz Kramer and Kate McCormick — Frontline PBS and NPR (produced in collaboration with the Investigative Reporting Workshop).

SPJ’s Sigma Delta Chi Award for Research in Journalism

Executive Editor Charles Lewis’ “Tear Down These Walls,” the first chapter from a book titled, “Global Teamwork: The Rise of Collaboration in Investigative Journalism,” edited by Richard Sambrook and published by the Reuters Institute at the University of Oxford, won the 2018 Sigma Delta Chi Research in Journalism Award from the Society of Professional Journalists.

Murrow Award

“Collateral Damage” won a regional Edward R. Murrow award from the Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA) in the Investigative Reporting Category for Large Radio Stations. The regional winners move on to the national competition, the winners of which are announced in June.

The story, produced in partnership with WAMU-88.5, revealed that few police departments are better at finding illegal guns than D.C.’s. But residents in some majority-African American neighborhoods say that trying to get those guns off the street has led to overly aggressive police tactics, including being unfairly targeted for stop-and-frisks.

IRW worked with reporter Patrick Madden and a team at the NPR affiliate to produce on-air and online stories. Here’s the behind-the-scenes account of how we did it.

Former IRW interns Miela Fetaw, Erin Logan, Kristen Griffith, Sarah Edwards and Brittany Crocker contributed research and reporting. Logan, Griffith and Edwards also were in the master’s program at American University. The late David Donald contributed additional editing.

The Society for News Design

The Investigative Reporting Workshop’s redesign of its website in 2018 won a Bronze Medal in the seventh annual SND Digital Design contest. Read the details here and more about how and why IRW undertook a new look.

Willard West, IRW’s graphics and design intern, won second place in the promotions and advertising category of the 2019 SND College Design Contest administered by Michigan State University.


I.F. Stone Award for Journalistic Independence: Chuck Lewis
Society for Professional Journalists’ Daily Reporting and Writing:

First place: “Trauma and Transitions: How San Diego Schools Grapple with Educating Refugees.” By Investigative Reporting Workshop’s Mandy McLaren and Megan Wood of inewsource San Diego


Society for Professional Journalists’ Research about Journalism Award

“New Newsrooms.”

Radio, Television Digital News Association 2017 Edward R. Murrow Award for best news documentary

“Dropped and Dismissed.” By Reveal News and Investigative Reporting Workshop.

IRE, Finalist broadcast/video category and also in the large radio/audio category

“Business of Disaster.” FRONTLINE and Investigative Reporting Workshop.


Emmy Award: Outstanding Documentary

“Years of Living Dangerously.” Showtime; Margaret Ebrahim, Jolie Lee, David Gelber, Joel Bach.

AP award for Outstanding Enterprise Reporting

“Assault on Justice.” Patrick Madden.

Daniel Schorr Journalism Prize

“Assault on Justice.” Patrick Madden.

Murrow Award for Investigative Reporting

“Assault on Justice.” Patrick Madden.

Finalist: ONA Student Projects Pro-Am Award

“Assault on Justice.” Patrick Madden.


NIHMC Foundation Health Care Award for Television and Radio

“Hunting the Nightmare Bacteria”

FRONTLINE and Investigative Reporting Workshop

Outstanding Faculty Award 2014

Chuck Lewis

Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation’s Mister Rogers Memorial Scholarship 2014

$10,000 to fund his thesis project, 2014

Kris Higgins


University of Missouri Medal of Honor 2013

Charles Lewis


Imagen Foundation

“Lost in Detention”

FRONTLINE and Investigative Reporting Workshop

Emmy Award: Outstanding Longform Investigative Journalism

“Big Sky, Big Money”


IRE: Multiplatform (large) Investigative Reporting Award

“Big Sky, Big Money”



Scripps Howard finalist for business journalism

“What Went Wrong”

Investigative Reporting Workshop: Jim Steele, Don Barlett, Lynne Perri

French-American Award

“Lost in Detention”

Investigative Reporting Workshop: Margaret Ebrahim

Writers’ Guild Nomination

“Lost in Detention”

Investigative Reporting Workshop: Rick Young


SABEW (Society of American Business Editors and Writers)

“Flying Cheap”

FRONTLINE and Investigative Reporting Workshop

Writers’ Guild Award

“Flying Cheap”

Investigative Reporting Workshop: Rick Young

Writers’ Guild Nomination

“Flying Cheap”

Investigative Reporting Workshop: Rick Young


SABEW (Society of American Business Editors and Writers)


Investigative Reporting Workshop: Wendell Cochran, Matt Waite, Richard Mullins, Lynne Perri and Lisa Hill