July 5, 2011

INN Welcomes New Member Oklahoma Watch

The Investigative News Network is pleased to announce the acceptance of Oklahoma Watch into the growing network of nonprofit, non-partisan investigative news outlets that produce high quality journalism in the public interest.

"We are very pleased to welcome Oklahoma Watch to the Network," said Kevin Davis, CEO & Executive Director of the Investigative News Network. "Oklahoma Watch represents a new breed of news organization that is not-for-profit, targeted on serving the information needs of the public in a key region and collaborates to produce journalism of the highest quality."

Oklahoma Watch is an independent, non-profit reporting team that has forged a unique collaboration with news organizations and higher education in Oklahoma to produce multi-media content that focuses on critical state issues.

Its current topics include "Women in Prison: why Oklahoma leads the nation," "Tax Breaks and Their Consequences" and "Immigration, Jobs and Citizenship."

"We are excited about the opportunity to be associated with INN and its partners as we reaffirm the role in-depth reporting and investigative journalism plays in Oklahoma and across the nation," Tom Lindley, Oklahoma Watch editor, said. "It is our belief that an informed citizenry and public accountability help democracy flourish, and this is another step in that direction."

Since its formation in November of 2010, Oklahoma Watch and its media partners have produced more than 40 stories and videos examining the costs to taxpayers, the burden the criminal justice system places on children of incarcerated parents, the particularly long prison sentences handed out to non-violent female offenders and the lack of alternative sentencing measures.

Oklahoma Watch's media partners include The Oklahoman, the Tulsa World, the Oklahoma Press Association, Griffin Communications, the Journal-Record, OETA-the Oklahoma Network and the Oklahoma Public Media Exchange, which includes the state's four public radio stations.

Its higher education partners include the Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Oklahoma and the Oklahoma State University School of Media and Strategic Communications.

Oklahoma Watch's primary grantors are Ethics & Excellence in Journalism Foundation of Oklahoma City, the Tulsa Community Foundation and the Knight Foundation of Miami, FL.

For more information about Oklahoma Watch please visit www.oklahomawatch.org.