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Dina Al-Shibeeb

Senior Journalist, Al Arabiya English (United Arab Emirates)

Study Plan: The rise of the Islamic State and its impact on Iraq's modern national state identity

Dina Al-Shibeeb is a senior journalist and shift editor for Al Arabiya English, the English-language website of one of the Arab world's biggest networks. With experience across print and online journalism, Al-Shibeeb has reported and written on a wide range of topics, including business, lifestyle and politics. She was the first to break the news of Iraq launching its first private airline in early 2010 for local news outlet Emirates Business 24/7. Additionally, Al-Shibeeb was one of the first journalists to write about Iraq's Sunni minority joining volunteer forces fighting ISIS. Al-Shibeeb will focus on human-interest stories coming out of conflict zones and examine the influence of extremist elements on national state identities in the Middle East - especially in Iraq and Syria.
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Fernando Canzian Da Silva

Reporter, Folha de São Paulo

Study Plan: Enhancing methods of print journalism with video and graphics

Fernando Canzian Da Silva has been with Folha de São Paulo for the past 25 years. He started as a financial reporter and later served as head of the national and political desks, managing editor, correspondent in Washington D.C. and New York and editor at "TV Folha," a weekly broadcast TV show produced by Folha. Today he works as a special reporter and columnist at Folha.com and focuses on politics and macroeconomics. His work has been recognized with four Esso Journalism Awards, the most prestigious journalism prize in Brazil, as well as a series of other awards.
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Anna Clark

Freelance Journalist, The New York Times,The Chicago Tribune, NBCNews.com

Study Plan: How chronic underfunding of American cities imperils residents

Anna Clark is a freelance journalist based in Detroit and interested in covering the underreported cities of the Midwest. Her long-form features, news, and opinion pieces have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The New Republic, Grantland, The American Prospect, ELLE, Next City and other publications. Since 2012, Clark has written about local accountability journalism in the Great Lakes region for the Columbia Journalism Review as part of its U.S. project. She is also the director of applications for Write A House, a small group that rehabs longtime vacant homes in Detroit and gives them to writers, for keeps. Clark was a U.S. Fulbright fellow in Nairobi, Kenya and editor of "A Detroit Anthology," a 2015 Michigan Notable Book. She is currently at work on a book about the Flint water crisis for Metropolitan Books/Henry Holt.
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Nicholas Deshais

Staff Writer and City Hall Reporter, The Spokesman-Review (Spokane, Washington)

Study Plan: How driving less will change our cities

Nicholas Deshais is a staff writer and city hall reporter for The Spokesman-Review. He uncovered allegations of sexual harassment against the city’s police chief and wrote the obituary for Merrill Womach, a renowned singer who survived a fiery plane crash to invent the soundtrack for the modern funeral. Deshais rode his bike 450 miles across the state of Washington, sending daily dispatches back home for readers. Before joining the Spokesman, he worked for dailies and alternative newsweeklies, including the Willamette Week in Portland, Oregon, the Times-Herald in Port Huron, Michigan, and The Inlander in Spokane. He graduated from Portland State University.
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Deirdre Falvey

Senior Features Commissioning Editor, The Irish Times

Study Plan: Blending oral history and art for long-form journalism

Deirdre Falvey is a journalist at The Irish Times, a broadsheet daily founded in 1859, regarded as Ireland’s paper of reference and now a multi-platform publication. Falvey has written, designed and sub-edited for the paper and has been commissioning editor in a number of feature areas, including Weekend Review, education and arts. She loves theatre and comedy and wrote "Gift of the Gag," a book about the boom in Ireland’s comedy scene. Falvey is particularly interested in the roles art and culture play in social change and plans to explore how artistic techniques and oral history impact journalism. She grew up in Galway in the west of Ireland and lives in Dublin. Falvey graduated from the National University of Ireland Galway and from Dublin City University.
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Sonya Green

News and Public Affairs Director, 91.3 KBCS (Seattle, Washington)

Study Plan: The impact of white privilege on how news is covered

Sonya Green is the news and public affairs director at 91.3 KBCS in Bellevue/Seattle, Washington. Under her leadership, the station was one of 15 selected to participate in the Association of Independents in Radio (AIR) public media productions, “Localore: Finding America.” Prior to her position at KBCS, she worked in broadcast television for ABC affiliates in Seattle and Denver. Green is the board president of the National Federation of Community Broadcasters and was named the 2011 Woman of the Year by the Bellevue chapter of Business and Professional Women for her professional and personal community work.
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Leana Hosea

Reporter and Producer, BBC

Study Plan: Clean water issues: Comparing the African American and Native American experience

Leana Hosea joined the BBC World Service in 2004 as a broadcast assistant and worked her way up to multimedia reporter and producer. She has been stationed in numerous overseas BBC bureaus including Brussels during the 2016 terror attacks. Hosea covered the uprisings across the Middle East and was in Tahrir Square from day one of the revolution, following the story until the bloody crackdown of the Muslim Brotherhood. From her base in Dubai she shot, edited and reported her own stories across the region - including filming inside Qatar’s World Cup squalid labor camps. Her documentary work includes "Rhino Wars," featuring poachers who spoke openly about their trade. Before joining the BBC, Hosea worked in international development for environmental publications and as a teaching assistant in Japan. She graduated with a degree in politics and international affairs from the University of Wales Swansea.
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Mike Kessler

Freelance Journalist, Los Angeles magazine,GQ,The New York Times Magazine

Study Plan: Media and police bias in missing-persons cases

Mike Kessler is a Los Angeles-based freelance journalist whose work has appeared in Los Angeles magazine,Outside, GQ, The New York Times Magazine, The California Sunday Magazine, Men's Journal, The Trace, TakePart and the anthology, "The Best American Magazine Writing 2008." Kessler has written long-form stories on a range of topics including recently released mentally ill criminal offenders, housing policy for the homeless, child sex trafficking, missing persons, nuclear weapons workers and urban gun violence. Two of his stories were finalists for the National Magazine Award and have won, or been finalists for, awards from the City and Regional Magazine Association and the Western Publishing Association. A former staff editor at 5280 (Denver),Skiing and Outside magazines, Kessler also worked at the Santa Monica, California-based NPR affiliate KCRW as a producer on the Public Radio International program, "To The Point."
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Jin Kim

Staff Writer, Chosun Ilbo (Seoul)

Study Plan: The past, present and future of the global automobile industry

Jin Kim is a staff writer for Chosun Ilbo covering business and technology. In 2008, she was awarded the Samsung Press Award for her coverage of the inappropriate exercise of power by the chief presidential secretary. In 2007, Kim received the Journalist of the Month Award from the Korean Journalist Association for her work on the illegal lobbying activity of a small-business president. She joined Chosun Ilbo in 2006 and spent three years covering social affairs. Her work has focused on business, including information technology and small-and- medium sized firms. Kim earned a master’s degree in journalism and mass communication from Korea University.
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Arno Kopecky

Freelance Writer and Author, The Walrus, The Globe and Mail (Canada)

Study Plan: Re-imagining growth for a finite planet

Arno Kopecky is a Vancouver-based freelance journalist and author interested in globalization, culture and the environment. He has reported from five continents, contributing along the way to The Walrus magazine, the The Globe and Mail, Reader's Digest, foreignpolicy.com, Tyee and other publications. Kopecky’s dispatches have ranged from Kenya’s brush with civil war in 2007 to Iceland’s erstwhile attempt to become the first oil-free country on earth. He is also the author of two books of narrative journalism which chronicle the impact of resource extraction on indigenous communities: "The Devil’s Curve" takes place in the Amazon basin and "The Oil Man and The Sea" transports readers to the Great Bear Rainforest on Canada’s northwest coast.
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Josh Kramer

Freelance Cartoonist, The Atlantic, New York magazine,Washington City Paper

Study Plan: Creating a style guide for journalistic and nonfiction comics

Josh Kramer is a cartoonist based out of Washington, D.C. He specializes in feature-length comic narratives drawn in a documentary style. In addition to freelancing for publications such as The Atlantic, New York magazine and Washington City Paper, Kramer takes a leadership role in advocating for comics journalism. He is the creator of The Cartoon Picayune, a self-published comics anthology of nonfiction stories. He also co-created The CoJo List, a monthly email newsletter curating the best online comic journalism. Kramer earned his bachelor's degree in journalism from American University and a Master’s of Fine Arts in Cartooning from the Center for Cartoon Studies.
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Amy Maestas

Senior Editor, The Durango Herald (Colorado)

Study Plan: The future for hyper-local newspapers

Amy Maestas is senior editor at The Durango Herald in Durango, Colorado. She oversees three community newspapers in Southwest Colorado and is founder of DGO, a weekly arts, entertainment and culture magazine. Maestas also directs editorial coverage of Adventure Pro, an online-only outdoor adventure magazine. She joined The Herald 20 years ago as a reporter covering city government, politics, business and public lands. She has won multiple state, regional and national journalism awards and in 2012 was a fellow with the Maynard Media Academy at the Nieman Foundation. Maestas traveled to Turkey, Armenia and Uganda with the International Center for Journalists as part of a newsroom exchange program. In addition, she has worked as a general assignment reporter at the Deseret News, as managing editor of an alternative weekly and as an assistant editor of a bank investment trade magazine, all in Salt Lake City. Maestas earned a journalism and mass communication degree from the University of Utah and is president-elect of the Society of Professional Journalists Colorado Pro.
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Brian Mockenhaupt

Contributing Editor, Outside, Esquire

Study Plan: Veterans’ alienation and the struggle to re-assimilate after war

Brian Mockenhaupt is a contributing editor at Outside and the non-fiction editor at the Journal of Military Experience. He writes regularly for The Atlantic and his work has appeared in Esquire, Pacific Standard, Backpacker, Reader's Digest and other publications. He served two tours in Iraq as an infantryman with the 10th Mountain Division. Since leaving the U.S. Army in 2005, Mockenhaupt has written extensively on military and veteran affairs, reporting from Afghanistan and Iraq, hometowns and hospitals. He is the recipient of the 2013 Michael Kelly Award and has twice been a National Magazine Award finalist for feature writing. Prior to joining the Army, he worked as a newspaper reporter in the United States and in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, at The Cambodia Daily, an English-language newspaper.
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Bastian Obermayer

Deputy Head of the Investigative Unit, Süddeutsche Zeitung (Munich)

Study Plan: Understanding the global menace of tax havens

Bastian Obermayer is deputy head of the investigative unit for Süddeutsche Zeitung, the largest national daily subscription newspaper in Germany. He is the reporter initially contacted by the anonymous source of the Panama Papers. In 2005, Obermayer began working for the SZ-Magazin, the weekly publication of Süddeutsche Zeitung, specializing in long-form and investigative journalism. In 2012, he transferred to the daily newspaper where he coordinated the work of the team that investigated Offshore Leaks, Luxembourg Leaks and Swiss Leaks. He has received numerous honors for his work, including the Theodor-Wolff-Prize, the Henri-Nannen-Prize, the Helmut-Schmidt-Prize and the Waechter-Prize. Obermayer is the author of several books, the latest of which is the story of the Panama Papers. It will be published in English, Spanish and several other languages.
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Gustavo Patu

Business Reporter, Folha de São Paulo

Study Plan: Tax systems and budgetary processes in developing countries

Gustavo Patu is a reporter based in Brasília, the capital city of Brazil. He has been working at Folha de São Paulo, the country's main newspaper, for 23 years, covering macroeconomics and public administration. His main tasks include analysis of data, explanatory texts about goverment choices and an increasing collaboration with the editorial section of the paper. He wrote two reference books about financial speculation and the Brazilian tax system. Since 2013, Patu has been producing a blog about how taxpayers' money is spent.
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Austin Ramzy

Asia Correspondent, International New York Times

Study Plan: Myanmar’s dramatic democratization in an increasingly authoritarian Southeast Asia

Austin Ramzy is a Hong Kong-based reporter covering breaking news in Asia for the International New York Times. He joined the newspaper in 2013 and has reported from China, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore and Taiwan. He also helped launch and run The New York Times’ China blog, "Sinosphere." Ramzy previously spent four years as a reporter in Hong Kong for Time Asia and six years as a Beijing-based correspondent for the magazine. He grew up in Iowa and is a graduate of Middlebury College and the University of California, Berkeley’s journalism school.
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Laurent Richard

Investigative Reporter and Editor-in-Chief, Premières Lignes Télévision (Paris)

Study Plan: Defeating censorship with collaborative journalism

Laurent Richard is a French investigative journalist and editor-in-chief of Premières Lignes, a television and news agency based in Paris. He is co-founder of the highly reputed inquiry magazine "Cash Investigation" broadcast. Richard graduated from law school and began his career in local television. He freelanced for several years, making documentaries in Kashmir and Israel before accepting a job with the French investigative show "Pièces à Conviction." Following the broadcast of an inquiry into post-traumatic stress in U.S. soldiers in Iraq, he joined the press agency CAPA as editor-in-chief. Richard founded the award winning investigative magazine “The Insiders." In 2011, he was approached by a French television station and asked to develop a new innovative magazine, “Cash Investigation,” dedicated to the business world. In addition to his duties as editor-in-chief, Richard keeps one foot in the field by leading, among others, investigations into dictators in the Caucasus region and Central Asia. “My President Is on a Business Trip,” a 120-minute documentary on the topic, was awarded best investigative report at FIGRA festival in France in 2016. In 2015, he cosigned the book “Reporting Is Not a Crime. Stand Together Against Censorship,” a collective work of 15 French journalists denouncing pressures against the press.
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Stephen Sawchuk

Associate Editor, Education Week

Study Plan: How policy contributes to K-12 educational inequality

Stephen Sawchuk is an associate editor at Education Week, the K-12 newspaper of record. For more than ten years he has written about school policy, including investigations into campaign finance, the increasing presence of philanthropy in K-12 schools and quality control of teaching programs. His work has also appeared in other publications, including the Hechinger Report and Smithsonian.com. Sawchuk holds degrees in English from Georgetown University and Columbia University and is a proud member of the Education Writers Association.
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Delece Smith-Barrow

Reporter, U.S. News & World Report

Study Plan: Why few underrepresented minorities thrive as professors

Delece Smith-Barrow is a higher education reporter at U.S. News & World Report, where she covers admissions challenges and trends, and the connection between higher education and employment. Prior to reporting on education, she worked as a producer, online editor and writer at The Washington Post. In her six years at The Post, she wrote about home decorating, African-American culture, fitness and parenting, and also created online contests for readers. She also served as the digital chair for the newsroom’s union. Smith-Barrow was a featured panelist in 2014 for the Society of Professional Journalists regional conference and a judge for the Association of Alternative News Media. In 2007, she was a collegiate scholar in Australia for the International Scholar Laureate Program Delegation on Journalism. She is a graduate of the University of Maryland's Philip Merrill College of Journalism and Georgetown University.
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Erica Westly

Freelance Writer and Author, Reuters

Study Plan: The history of swimming instruction and drowning prevention

Erica Westly is a freelance journalist based in Tucson, Arizona. She has written for Popular Science, Slate.com, Smithsonian.com and The New York Times, among other publications. Her most recent project is a book about women’s softball entitled “Fastpitch: The Untold History of Softball and the Women Who Made the Game,” published in 2016. In addition to sports history, she has a longstanding interest in public health issues such as infectious diseases and accidental deaths due to injury. Westly is a past recipient of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution science journalism fellowship. She holds master’s degrees in neuroscience and journalism from Case Western Reserve University and New York University, respectively.
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James Wright

Deputy Editor for Metro and Business News, The Las Vegas Review-Journal

Study Plan: How mega-donors in U.S. politics influence U.S. foreign policy

James G. Wright is deputy editor for metropolitan and business news for the The Las Vegas Review-Journal. Before joining that publication in 2010, he held editor positions with the Times-News (Twin Falls, Idaho), the Times Union (Albany, New York), the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, the Colorado Springs Gazette-Telegraph, and the San Diego Tribune. Throughout his career, Wright has specialized in watchdog journalism and special projects. In 2011, he directed the Review-Journal's national award-winning investigation of police shootings, "Deadly Force: When Las Vegas Police Shoot, and Kill." In 1985, his efforts to protect a confidential source lead to an Idaho Supreme Court decision establishing qualified privilege for journalists in that state. A native of the Pacific Northwest, Wright grew up on a small farm. He holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Idaho. While working as a reporter covering city hall for the Rocky Mountain News, he earned a masters degree in public administration from the University of Colorado at Denver.