It took a month longer than expected but InvestigateWest, the newest online journalism site fostered by the closure of the P-I's print edition - launched today. Former P-I assistant managing editor Rita Hibbard, now IW's executive director and editor, calls it "a new model of public service journalism that seeks to fill the void rapidly developing in investigative coverage." (More on this from Poynter.org). The Seattle-based non-profit will specialize in investigations about environmental, health and social justice issues across the West, she says. Staffers all have P-I backgrounds - Daniel Lathrop, Robert McClure, Carol Smith, Anne-Marie Taylor, Kristen Millares Young and Lewis Kamb, who has also been reporting lately for the Seattle Times.
Today's launch edition consists of two blogs, Dateline Earth and Western Exposure, already brimming with more than 30 entries. Hibbard says the site is establishing a network of correspondents throughout the West who will serve as listening posts and produce pieces for IW. Its advisory board includes education and journalism figures including former P-I and now Hearst investigative reporter Eric Nalder, former P-I managing editor and now editorial director of Hearst Connecticut Newspapers David McCumber, and ex-Seattle Times and now New York Times investigative reporter Duff Wilson - who, of course, once worked for the P-I too. But didn't everyone?