NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - FOX 8 Chief Investigative Reporter Lee Zurik along with journalists from NOLA.com | The Times-Picayune accepted the 2014 Investigative Reporters and Editors Award for the "Louisiana Purchased" Investigative Series. The award which won the broadcast/video in the small market category, was accepted Saturday at the IRE Awards in Philadelphia, PA. The award winners were announced in early April.
The IRE, one of the most highly esteemed journalism groups in the United States, recognized the series. "'Louisiana Purchased' - a comprehensive investigation into the big business of the state's campaign financing -- exposed illegal activities, questionable practices and toothless ethics enforcement," write the judges in their award comments. "The reporting team uncovered volumes of data from campaign finance records that show direct influence peddling going on across the state. In the wake of the series, state lawmakers passed five campaign finance reform laws, 10 politicians returned money to taxpayers, state and federal authorities launched investigations, and politicians returned more than $300,000 in illegal contributions."
It was the second consecutive year that FOX 8 won an IRE award. FOX 8 took home the 2013 IRE Award for 'Best Broadcast Video' for the "Body of Evidence" series.