AJC investigative series honored with national award

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution's investigative series "Doctors & Sex Abuse" won national recognition this week when it was selected the winner of the $20,000 Scripps Howard Award for investigative reporting.

The AJC’s 50-state investigation uncovered a tolerance for sexual misconduct by physicians that allows abusive doctors to stay in practice.

The investigative reporting award — the Ursula and Gilbert Farfel Prize — is the top award in the Scripps Howard contest, which recognizes the "best journalism in the country" in 17 categories.

“We commend the work these journalists did in 2016 and the impact their words, videos and interactive elements will continue to have across our communities,” said Liz Carter, president and CEO of the Scripps Howard Foundation, in a statement that announced the winners. “They embody our motto of giving light and changing lives.”

The AJC's investigative series, which ran in installments from last July to December, has been lauded by several organizations. It was recognized as a finalist last week for the Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting.

An investigation of the private prison industry by Mother Jones magazine won the Goldsmith, which is awarded by the Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government.

The AJC’s Doctors & Sex Abuse series was one of six finalists for the Goldsmith. All finalists were recognized at an event last week at Harvard. Other finalists for the award, in addition to Mother Jones, included investigations published by the Chicago Tribune, the Los Angeles Times, the Sarasota Herald-Tribune and The Wall Street Journal.

This AJC investigation was anchored by a core project group: reporters Ariel Hart, Danny Robbins, Carrie Teegardin, Alan Judd and Johnny Edwards; data journalist Jeff Ernsthausen; video journalist Ryon Horne; digital designer and illustrator Richard Watkins, and senior editor for investigations Lois Norder.

» Read more about the AJC's national investigation of sexual misconduct by physicians at doctors.ajc.com