Ida B. Wells Society for Investigative Reporting

The Ida B. Wells Society for Investigative Reporting is a national organization dedicated to increasing and retaining reporters and editors of color that also works to educate news organizations and journalists on how the inclusion of diverse voices can raise the caliber, impact and visibility of investigative journalism as a means of promoting transparency and good government.

The society is named after Ida B. Wells, a pioneering black investigative journalist in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and early leader in the civil rights movement.

The Ida B. Wells Society is spearheaded by veteran journalists Nikole Hannah-Jones '03 (M.A.), a 2003 Carolina graduate who is a staff writer at The New York Times Magazine and who envisioned the magazine’s The 1619 Project; Ron Nixon, the international investigations editor at The Associated Press; and Topher Sanders, who covers race, inequality and the justice system for ProPublica.

The society offers investigative reporting training workshops throughout the United States and is developing a yearlong fellowship program based in New York City. Society workshops cover the use of advanced technology, interviewing techniques and the latest data-gathering and fact-checking resources and build on story pitching, project management and narrative storytelling skills. The society’s co-founders advise and mentor MJ-school students and share their investigative journalism expertise at Carolina in a classroom setting.

Hannah-Jones, who was a Roy H. Park Fellow as a graduate student at the MJ-school from 2001–03 and who delivered the MJ-school commencement speech in 2017, shared her enthusiasm for the relocation to Carolina.

“I’m very proud that we’ve moved to the MJ-school,” she said. “It’s such a place of journalistic excellence. It means so much to me. And I love that we’re moving to the South. Having a presence there — where so many black journalists are and the people that we write about live — is critical.”

LEARN MORE

GIVE NOW

Co-founders

   

Nikole Hannah-Jones '03 (M.A.)

 

Ron Nixon

 

Topher Sanders

The New York Times Magazine
Staff writer

 

The Associated Press
International investigations editor

 

ProPublica
Investigative reporter

Nikole Hannah-Jones ’03 (M.A.) is a domestic correspondent at The New York Times Magazine focusing on racial injustice. She envisioned and helped shape the magazine‘s The 1619 Project, a special project launched in August 2019 examining how the legacy of slavery continues to influence life in the United States. She was a Roy H. Park Fellow as a graduate student from 2001–03 and delivered the MJ-school commencement speech in 2017, the year she was named a MacArthur Genius Grant Fellow.

 

Ron Nixon — the international investigations editor at The Associated Press — manages a team of reporters based in London, Cairo, New Delhi, Shanghai and Washington, D.C. Prior to The Associated Press, he was the homeland security correspondent for The New York Times — where he covered border and aviation security, immigration, cybercrime and violent extremism — and worked at The Minneapolis Star-Tribune, with the Investigative Reporters and Editors and at The Roanoke Times.

 

Topher Sanders covers race, inequality and the justice system for ProPublica. In 2019, he was part of a team recognized for its coverage of President Donald Trump’s family separation policy with prestigious Peabody and Polk awards, a Pulitzer Prize finalist placement and a Paul Tobenkin Award for “Zero Tolerance.” Prior to ProPublica, Sanders was investigative editor at The Florida Times-Union. His career began at the Montgomery Advertiser in Alabama.