Laura Frank

Laura Frank is the executive director of I-News, the Rocky Mountain Investigative News Network. Laura is a Denver native who spent 20 years at newspapers, radio and public television around the country, specializing in in-depth reporting that requires data analysis and deep public records research. She has trained hundreds of journalists for more than a dozen media organizations, including the nation’s largest newspaper company (Gannett). Her work has been recognized in both broadcast and print, including a regional Emmy for documentary production in 1990 and as a top-10 finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in 2007 at the Rocky Mountain News.

Jim Trotter

Jim is highly regarded in Colorado journalism and beyond. He was the senior editor for investigative and enterprise journalism at the Rocky Mountain News when it closed in 2009. Since then, he has been with the Associated Press, responsible for enterprise journalism in 13 western states. Jim has edited Pulitzer Prize-winning articles and an Emmy-winning documentary. He has been a columnist at a major metropolitan newspaper and been editorial director for the public affairs show of a major metropolitan television station.

Recent Stories

Many Former Rocky Flats Workers Still Wait for Radiation Exposure Benefits

A worker holds a disk of  plutonium in a containment box at Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Plant near Golden, Colo., in this 1973 file photo.

Fewer than half of the 4,600 former Rocky Flats workers or their survivors who applied to a federal compensation program for health problems related to their exposure to radiation and other toxins have been approved. The $7 billion demolition and cleanup effort of the nuclear weapons plant was completed in 2005. Continue Reading →

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New Documentary Examines Rocky Flats and Colorado’s Cold War Role

Looking northwest over the Rocky Flats Plant between Golden and Boulder in 1995. Demolition and cleanup was announced complete 10 years later.

Rocky Flats is Colorado’s Cold War legacy. A sprawling and highly secret industrial complex involved in the production of plutonium triggers for America’s nuclear bombs, Rocky Flats became the first-ever site where federal agents raided a federal installation. “Colorado’s Cold War,” a new documentary on Rocky Mountain PBS, premieres tonight at 7. Continue Reading →

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I-News’ Losing Ground report sparks statewide reaction

In January, I-News at Rocky Mountain PBS released Losing Ground, which revealed that many gains African Americans and Latino Coloradans made with the 1960s civil rights movement have now been lost. In response, the Colorado Black Roundtable, an organization of African American leaders from across the state, has launched a summer-long effort to spread word about the findings. Roundtable members are involving citizens, students, and black churches in an education campaign that will culminate with a summit Sept. 21 at Manual High School. Continue Reading →

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Inside I-News

Here’s a snapshot I took this week of the I-News newsroom. There’s such a buzz in the newsroom these days. You can see the two newest members of our staff, reporter-extraordinaire Kevin Vaughan in the back and editor-with-the-magic-touch Jim Trotter in the foreground. Jim is working with reporter Ann Carnahan Espinola, who has teamed up with Burt Hubbard (you can see him working away on his computer). They’re in the middle of a major project looking at how Colorado compares to the rest of the nation when it comes to matters of race and things like income, education and health – and what that means to the future of the state. Continue Reading →

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I-News awarded major grant for health reporting project

The Colorado Health Foundation has awarded a three-year, $425,000 grant to the I-News Network in support of in-depth, data-based journalism on key health and medical care issues facing Colorado. The grant will be used to cover operating expenses of the I-News Health Reporting Project, including a full-time editor and a reporter skilled in data analysis and in-depth multimedia journalism. “I-News is dedicated to helping millions of Coloradans have access to journalism that illuminates serious issues and inspires people to fix problems,” said I-News executive director Laura Frank. “So many of the most urgent and complex issues facing our state today are related to health. I’m confident this grant will lead to journalism that makes a difference.”

“The in-depth news stories produced by I-News serve as an important information source for Coloradans about health topics,” said Kelly Dunkin, vice president for philanthropy at the Colorado Health Foundation. Continue Reading →

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Are you a Political Ad Sleuth?

Have you noticed all the political ads on TV lately? Ever wonder who – and who’s money – is behind those ads? Become a political ad sleuth. Complete records of political advertising data are maintained at TV stations across the country. Even though the Federal Communications Commission now requires stations to post these files online, most stations don’t have to post until 2014. Continue Reading →

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Colorado’s wildfire Red Zone investigation

As multiple wildfires rage across Colorado, I-News is able to add vital context to a serious breaking story. This morning, we released to our media partners an investigation into wildfires in Colorado. We found that both the number of fires and the number of Coloradans living in the high-risk red zones has exploded in the past two decades. And we describe how public policies risk making matters worse. So as thousands of people now are being evacuated from their homes in the path of wildfire, I-News can tell Colorado how many people in each county now live in red zones, how that population has changed and what our current policies mean for the future. Continue Reading →

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Journalism that makes a difference

The I-News Network is a nonprofit organization that gives millions of Coloradans access to in-depth news they wouldn’t find any other way – stories that inspire real action and positive change. I-News helps news media throughout Colorado produce in-depth journalism they couldn’t do alone; we train journalists in other newsrooms to do the kind of in-depth reporting and research that I-News does; and we help citizens and students learn investigative reporting skills: to think critically, research deeply and tell compelling stories important for the public to know. I-News has helped media across the state produce news reports that live up to the I-News motto: Journalism that makes a difference. Here are some examples:

More doctors now disclose drug company payments after I-News helped Colorado Public Radio report hidden funding. Lawmakers changed tax law after I-News helped the Denver Post reveal that movie stars and developers were getting tax breaks meant for farmers and ranchers. Continue Reading →

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