The IRP is pleased to announce its fellows for 2019-20:
Jameka Autry is a director, producer and 2017 Impact Partners Creative Producer Fellow. In 2018, she was selected as part of the inaugural DOC NYC 40 Under 40 List. She started her career at Break Thru Films and also was part of the original productions team at Cinereach. She has worked on the creative development and production of feature documentaries, narrative films, commercials, short films and multimedia campaigns. Her films have screened at the Sundance Film Festival, Tribeca Film Festival, SXSW and New Directors New Films.
Recently, she was a line producer on Matangi/Maya/M.I.A. (Sundance ’18) and served as a consulting producer on Jeremiah Zagar’s We the Animals (Sundance ’18) and CNN Films’ Love Gilda (Tribeca Opening Night Film ’18). She most recently completed work on Ernie & Joe, which premiered at SXSW and received jury awards at SXSW and the Boston International Film Festival. She is currently working on directing her first feature film, The United States of America v. Billie Holiday, for which she was recently awarded one of four Sundance/A&E Brave Storyteller Awards.
Lucas Guilkey is a documentary filmmaker and video journalist based in Oakland, California. His work focuses on many of the socially and politically relevant stories of our time — from mass incarceration to climate change, and from budget cuts to reproductive healthcare. He recently completed a short documentary about a mother’s fight for truth and justice after her son’s mysterious death in a Santa Rita jail (What Happened to Dujuan Armstrong?) and is currently producing a documentary about the 2013 California prisoner hunger strikes protesting indefinite solitary confinement. He is a 2019 graduate of the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism. He received his bachelor’s degree from Wesleyan University.
Rachel Witte is an investigative journalist whose television and documentary work has appeared on NBC Bay Area, VICE, CNN and other outlets. Witte’s work as an investigative producer at NBC Bay Area earned some of broadcast journalism’s highest honors, including an Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Award and a national Edward R. Murrow Award. She was a finalist for the Livingston Award in 2018. Witte studied television and documentary filmmaking at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism (’14).
Professor Lowell Bergman was the featured speaker in a forum put on by California State University of San Bernadino’s Department of Public Administration. The event, titled The Abdication of Truth and the Decline of Public Trust, explored why American’s trust in government officials, business, media and NGOs has steadily declined in recent years. Bergman was also awarded the Pi Alpha Alpha award for Ethical Leadership.
Yoav Potash, director of the award-winning documentary Crime After Crime, wrote in Videomaker magazine about his decision to take the IRP’s Professional Workshop for Independent Filmmakers and how it helped him improve his investigative skills. Potash writes that even after his previous success, he learned invaluable information about journalism and bulletproofing his stories.
The second-highest ranking officer in one of the largest police departments in California went to prison last year, convicted of conspiring to deal heroin and marijuana. It’s one of the biggest police corruption scandals in modern state history. Robert Lewis, the lead reporter for the IRP’s California Corruption Project with KQED, reports on the story in a special episode of the California Report Magazine.
Felix Sater, a former business partner of President Donald Trump who – along with Michael Cohen – tried to build a Trump Tower in Moscow during the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign, spoke at Lowell Bergman’s seminar in September. He is scheduled to testify for the first time in open session before the House Intelligence Committee on March 27. You can watch the video of Sater’s appearance at the IRP and learn more on the Investigative Studios website.
The California Reporting Project, a coalition of more than 30 news organizations, has formed to request and report on previously secret records of police misconduct and deadly use of force. The group—including the IRP, KQED, the Bay Area News Group, KPCC, Capital Public Radio and the Los Angeles Times—is investigating records obtained under the state’s new police transparency law. To learn more, you can read the full story on KQED’s website and view a timeline that shows everything published to date, including stories researched by Graduate School of Journalism students.
Hanayo Oya, a Fulbright fellow based at the Investigative Reporting Program, has won Japan’s most prestigious film award for her latest documentary, Boy Soldiers: the Secret War in Okinawa (co-directed by Chie Mikami). The award ceremony was held Feb. 10 in Tokyo.
(Photo credit: Haruhi Ichikawa)
John Temple Presents and Judges at Press Mega-Conference
IRP Director John Temple is presenting and speaking at the Key Executives Mega-Conference in Las Vegas. The event is the only major newspaper conference scheduled in 2019. Temple was part of a three-judge panel that evaluated newspaper innovation. He also is leading a roundtable on the future of investigative reporting at the event. For more information, please visit the Mega-Conference website.
IRP Founder Lowell Bergman spoke at Sundance Film Festival for the “Democracy Hacked?” panel Jan. 27 in Park City, Utah.
The IRP and PBS Frontline film Trafficked in America has been selected as a finalist for the 2019 Goldsmith Prize. The film, reported by the IRP’s Daffodil Altan, Andrés Cediel, and Abbie VanSickle, investigates labor trafficking at an Ohio egg farm. The prize is awarded by Harvard University’s Shorenstein Center. For more information, please read the press release.
Reveal partners with Investigative Studios, the production arm of the Investigative Reporting Program to explore the deadly crash of a 53E helicopter during a training exercise. You can listen to the episode on Reveal‘s website.
The IRP is now accepting applications for the 2019-20 Investigative Reporting Fellowships. These positions are designed to enable select journalists with a proven ability to tell complex public interest stories to pursue a story for up to one year. To apply, please visit https://aprecruit.berkeley.edu/apply/JPF02017.
Read news from Lowell Bergman about developments at the IRP.
Who Killed Lt. Van Dorn? documentary produced by IRP’s Zachary Stauffer and Jason Paladino won the Best Documentary award at the Monarch Film Festival in Monterey this past weekend.
The IRP is signatory to an amicus statement in support of Judge Kelly’s decision to reinstate Jim Acosta’s White House press credential temporarily. The brief is backed by a number of news organizations and press freedom groups.