Civil Rights, Social Action, Advocacy


Quick Facts

aka Investigate West

Seattle, WA


InvestigateWest engages in watchdog journalism that enriches our community, contributing original reporting — on public health, the environment, and government accountability — and producing powerful stories with a clear bearing on public policy. Partnering with commercial media and public broadcasters, it creates new opportunities for individuals and teams of journalists to take on ambitious reporting assignments. A mission-driven organization, it strengthens communities, engages people in civic life, and helps set the policy agenda in the Northwest by producing powerful, independent investigative and explanatory journalism.

Ruling Year


Executive Director and co-founder

Mr. Robert McClure

Main Address

Po Box 9574

Seattle, WA 98109 USA


Nonprofit Investigative Journalism





Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Civil Rights, Social Action, and Advocacy N.E.C. (R99)

Environmental Quality, Protection, and Beautification N.E.C. (C99)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Programs + Results

What we aim to solve

For a century, nearly all the original reporting in the U.S. happened at newspapers. Then starting in 2008, an estimated $4 billion disappeared from newsroom payrolls. Nationally, half the corps of news gatherers has disappeared -- including thousands of reporting, editing and writing jobs in the Pacific Northwest. Without public support, coverage of many consequential issues does not happen, the public is uninformed or misinformed and democracy itself is put at risk.

Our programs

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Foster Care

Unequal Justice for Minorities

Exhausted at School

Lifesaving Drugs, Deadly Consequences

Sexual Assault at Reed College

Toxic Asphalt

Northwest Detention Center

Fish Consumption Standards

Prescription for Abuse

Where we work

Charting Impact

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What is the organization aiming to accomplish?

What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?

What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?

How will they know if they are making progress?

What have they accomplished so far and what's next?

Against the backdrop of the decline of reporting by media, InvestigateWest is pioneering a nonprofit news model, employing skilled journalists to educate and equip the public on consequential issues.

We continue to pay qualified and experience journalists to bring stories of significance to our communities and we seek the support of generous donors and benefactors who will permit us to pursue journalism without bias or interference.

We have established offices in Seattle and Portland, staffed by editors who can help guide contributing writers and researchers and who understand data reporting. However we need to continue to expand these capabilities to meet the demand as for-profit newsrooms continue to decline.

Signs that InvestigateWest is making progress vary widely by the type of issue being addressed. But one significant indication is in the response of state and federal lawmakers and officials. InvestigateWest's work resulted in 13 laws being passed in Washington and Oregon in 2017 alone, and $48 million in foster care funding being appropriated in Washington. Since 2009, InvestigateWest's journalism has directly led to a healthier, safer and more transparent Pacific Northwest, including several first-in-the-nation state laws to protect the environment and workers' health. Another measure of success, is the response of our peers and competitors in larger, better-funded newsrooms. Our journalism has also won dozens of state, regional and national journalism awards since we began publishing. Our work and our staff have been honored for exceptional reporting, technical innovation, and creative storytelling. In just the last two years, awards have included Northwest Excellence in Journalism—Social Issues Reporting for a piercing expose' that laid bare the turmoil in Washington's child-welfare system; Northwest Excellence in Journalism—Comprehensive Coverage for a  months-long investigation into Washington's foster-care system; Northwest Emmys, Informational/Instructional – Feature/Segment for our their film “The Waste That Remains from Arming Nuclear Weapons; " Northwest Excellence in Journalism—Business Reporting for “How cash sent the Portland home market spinning;" Northwest Excellence in Journalism—Business Reporting for “Profiting from Thrift;" Northwest Excellence in journalism—Investigative Reporting for for “Profiting from Thrift;" Best of the West—Explanatory Reporting for the series “Portland Housing: " Best of the West—Business and Financial Reporting for the series “Portland Housing: How Cash Sent the Portland Home Market Spinning" and the sidebars “26 Investors Who Have Way More House Than You" and “Methodology for Our Report on Cash Buyers," and much more.

Our goal is to build a sustainable and growing journalistic base, funded through community and foundations. We have made progress expanding our foundation donors in the last year, and are now engaged in making donors in the community more aware of our efforts and of how they can make a difference.

External Reviews



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FREE: Gain immediate access to the following:

  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2017, 2016 and 2015
  • A Pro report is also available for this organization.

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The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Need more info?

FREE: Gain immediate access to the following:

  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2017, 2016 and 2015
  • A Pro report is also available for this organization.

See what's included

Board Leadership Practices

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization


Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?



Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?



Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?



Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?



Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?


Organizational Demographics

In order to support nonprofits and gain valuable insight for the sector, GuideStar worked with D5—a five-year initiative to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion in philanthropy—in creating a questionnaire. This section is a voluntary questionnaire that empowers organizations to share information on the demographics of who works in and leads organizations. To protect the identity of individuals, we do not display sexual orientation or disability information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff. Any values displayed in this section are percentages of the total number of individuals in each category (e.g. 20% of all Board members for X organization are female).

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization


Race & Ethnicity

Sexual Orientation

This organization reports that it does not collect this information for Board Members, Senior Staff, Full-Time Staff and Part-Time Staff.


This organization reports that it does not collect this information for Board Members, Senior Staff, Full-Time Staff and Part-Time Staff.

Diversity Strategies

We track retention of staff, board, and volunteers across demographic categories
We track income levels of staff, senior staff, and board across demographic categories
We track the age of staff, senior staff, and board
We track the diversity of vendors (e.g., consultants, professional service firms)
We have a diversity committee in place
We have a diversity manager in place
We have a diversity plan
We use other methods to support diversity
Diversity notes from the nonprofit
In such a small organization we are very aware of areas in which we need to work on a more diverse membership. The board is actively recruiting more women and people of color to its role as we expand from 5 members to (eventually(11.