Ida B. Wells was one of the most revered investigative journalists in American history and those at the helm of an organization created in her honor are ensuring that her legacy lives on through the next generation of reporters. According to the Philadelphia Tribune, the Ida B. Wells Society for Investigative Reporting has launched an investigative journalism program for Black reporters.
The training program was created as an avenue to diversify newsrooms across the country. According to a study conducted by the Pew Research Center, 77 percent of newsroom employees—which includes editors, writers, photojournalists, and videographers across different mediums—are white. Cognizant of the lack of diversity, the organization decided to launch a program that would develop pathways for Black journalists to enter these spaces. The program covers everything from paper trails to data journalism.
The training sessions are led by Ron Nixon who co-created the organization and serves as the International Investigations Editor at the Associated Press. Recent workshops were hosted at Morgan State University and the Center for Investigative Reporting in California. In July, the organization will host a training session at the Seattle Times. “Bringing programs like this is important to our institution,” Morgan State University Journalism Professor Hamil Harris told the news outlet. “I really enjoyed being able to see different generations come together with a similar purpose of engaging and talking investigative journalism. This was an excellent session and I think everyone involved got a lot out of it.”
Ida B. Wells was instrumental in bringing national attention to the lynchings of Black men during the 1800s. Her journalistic skills, courageousness, and dedication to exposing racial discrimination and injustice imposed on the Black community forever changed the landscape of the journalism industry. The Ida B. Wells Society for Investigative Reporting is dedicated to bringing diverse perspectives to the journalism industry by empowering reporters through workshops and mentorship.