Posted in Announcements

Updates to AP’s global investigative team

, by Patrick Maks

In a memo to staff on Friday, Global Investigations Editor Ron Nixon and Deputy Global Investigations Editor Alison Kodjak announced a reorganized global investigative team that will continue to deliver ambitious journalism:

We are thrilled to announce a new addition and changes to the AP’s global investigative team. We’re also introducing two new programs. Our overall mission remains unchanged: To produce and enable big, ambitious, exclusive AP journalism from around the world that our customers can’t get anywhere else. The team will work closely with all of AP’s regions and verticals to advance this goal, and to create high-impact journalism in all formats: text, video, photos, data, interactives and audio.
  • On Monday we welcomed Jason Dearen, a longtime AP reporter, who joins us as a national investigative reporter. Jason worked closely with the investigative team last year and broke several stories about the Centers for Disease Control under the Trump administration and its response to the pandemic.
Here is how the rest of the global investigative team is now arrayed:
  • The National Investigative Team is led by Alison Kodjak, deputy global investigations editor, who is based in Washington. The Washington-based reporters on this team include Michael Biesecker, Juliet Linderman and Richard Lardner. Reporter Jason Dearen will join reporter Michael Rezendes in New York. Reporter Martha Mendoza is based in Santa Cruz, California.
  • The Corporate and Government Accountability and FOIA Team is led by Los-Angeles based reporter Justin Pritchard in a player-coach capacity. The team includes reporters Reese Dunklin in Dallas, Mitch Weiss in South Carolina and Holbrook Mohr in Mississippi. This team focuses on short- and long-term business and government accountability investigations and will also lead efforts to more effectively use the Freedom of Information Act to enhance reporting across AP.
  • The Visual and Digital Investigations Team is led by Jeannie Ohm, deputy editor of visual investigations. Jeannie will own our efforts to generate more top-level investigative stories for AP’s video clients around the world, a longstanding goal for the investigative team. Her team consists of Helen Wieffering, an investigative reporter and data journalist based in Minnesota. We will soon be adding a video journalist to the team.
  • The International Investigations Team is led by Global Investigations Editor Ron Nixon and consists of reporters Erika Kinetz in Brussels; Margie Mason, based in West Virginia and Hawaii; Garance Burke in San Francisco; Robin McDowell in Minneapolis; and James LaPorta, in Delray Beach, Florida. Maad Al-Zekri, who was part of the team that won the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for International Reporting, is based in Yemen and will split time between Mideast and Investigations.
We also wanted to announce the Investigative Correspondents Program. This program consists of reporters around the AP, who with permission of their editors, work on an ongoing basis with the global investigative team while maintaining their spot news responsibilities. The correspondents are:
  • Kat Stafford, national investigative race reporter, Detroit.
  • Joshua Goodman, Latin American correspondent, Miami.
  • Michelle R. Smith, supervisory correspondent, Providence, Rhode Island.
  • Yesica Fisch, senior producer, Dakar, Senegal.
  • Moshb’sa El Shamy, photojournalist, Morocco.
  • Martha Bellisle, investigative reporter, Seattle.
  • Sarah El-Deeb, correspondent, Beirut.
Joshua Housing, a news associate on the East Desk, is our inaugural investigative fellow. Fellows collaborate with reporters and editors on the AP’s Global Investigative Team on in-depth research and projects. Ron and Alison