Reporter news: May-June 2009

The Chicago Reporter‘s cover investigation on the Illinois State Police’s denial of thousands of court orders to expunge or seal criminal records sparked meetings between officials from the Circuit Court of Cook County, the Office of the Illinois Attorney General and several legal aid clinics about how to remedy the situation. In addition, the Reporter’s investigation became fodder for several Chicago media outlets.

Chicago Sun-Times columnist Mary Mitchell wrote about the controversy and discussed it on the “Chicago Speaks,” a public affairs radio show on WVAZ-FM, with co-host Ty Wansley. In addition, Huffington Post Chicago, Capitol Fax, Gaper’s Block, the Chicago Defender and Progress Illinois picked up on the Reporter’s investigation.

As the story changed, shortly after its initial online release on March 13, the Reporter provided updates through its enewsletter and blog.

Telemundo Chicago aired a two-part package on the Reporter’s investigation on disparate traffic stops of Latinos in suburban communities–”from its March/April 2009 issue. The story was picked up by nbcchicago.com, and the newspapers La Raza and Extra ran edited reprints.

Reporter Kelly Virella’s article on rental foreclosures, “A Renter’s Nightmare,” won a Peter Lisagor Award for Exemplary Journalism, presented by the Chicago Headline Club.

The Reporter’s “Fallen & Forgotten,” written by Fernando Dí­az in the November/December 2008 issue, was named a finalist in the magazine/specialty publication category of the 2008 IRE Awards, presented by Investigative Reporters & Editors, a professional organization for investigative journalists. BusinessWeek’s “Cyber-War” was named the winner in that category. The awards will be presented at IRE’s annual conference, to be held in Baltimore, Md., in mid-June.

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