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Institutes For Journalism & Natural Resources

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Arts & Culture, Arts, Culture & Humanities, Environment, Environmental Education

Mission: The organization pursues higher standards of news coverage of natural resources and the environment -- standards of accuracy, fairness, balance, depth and context.

Programs: Great bear institute - see schedule o

upper colorado river institute - see schedule o

drinking water institute - see schedule o

Community Stories

122 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

IJNR provides the highest level of professional experience for serious environmental journalists. The program's field immersion is unparalleled. Fellows receive intensive training in this specialization. They also have fun in the field learning about other cultures, environmental issues and their solutions, and getting to know each other on IJNR's well prepared field trips, such as rafting on rivers, crabbing, and participating in traditional Native American ceremonies.An

Previous Stories

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

IJNR is without a doubt the most professional environmental nonprofit organization in the United States. The institute takes working journalists into the field to study first-hand some of the most pressing environmental issues of our times. Many IJNR fellows have written award-winning articles based on their experience with this NGO. Still others have written highly acclaimed books on issues they learned about as participants in this forward-looking institute that provides the skills and opportunities to truly excel in the field.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

In the summer of 2002, I went on an IJNR-sponsored trip to the California/Oregon border on a program to help environmental journalists get a better grasp of water issues in the area. It was a fantastic experience that lead to a multi-dimensional understanding of the forces at work in the area. We talked with farmers, native Americans, environmentalists, loggers and policy-makers. We met many passionate and committed people, who brought the region's issues to life. We covered a lot of ground. We learned a lot. And we had a blast. I came away extremely impressed with IJNR. This is a quality organization.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

It was in the summer of 2000 that I went to Maine as a Fellow to learn to be a better natural resources reporter. The exposure to how to ask probing questions and to come up with a more complete understanding of complicated topics was extremely valuable. Like most reporters at small newspapers, I have to move quickly from one complex topic to another and get it right. And be able to pull readers into stories and topics and hold their attention. The travels tested my stamina, too. Unfortunately, Frank had to leave part-way through the trip to keep an eye on his house in Montana, threatened with wildfires. Otherwise I might have learned more about setting up a story. But it was a wonderful experience!

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Beyond the stimulating total emersion within a journalistic milieu that IJNR offers its selected Fellows on each of its highly organized Institutes, the most remarkable aspect of the experience they provide is the complete financial support that's included with each invitation to participate in one of their unique journeys of discovery.

From the moment of arrival until the final departure, Fellows' expenses for each Institute are all covered by IJNR and its generous supporters. I hadn't experienced funding support like that since I served in the Navy, and IJNR doesn't even require you to wear a uniform or stand mid-watches. And the food is so much better than Navy chow, there's no comparison.

But the best food IJNR brings to the table is food for thought, both in the outstanding speakers and other resources they present to the Fellows day after day, and the careful selection of the Fellows themselves for each journey whose members are chosen with the intent of creating a symbiotic whole that will continue to evolve from their shared experience long after their particular Institute is complete.

Like the old wisdom about college--that education is what remains after all you learned has been forgotten--the IJNR experience only gains with time, investing intellectual capital in its alumni that continues to grow like compounding interest, and which will benefit the collective Fellowship on each journey for the rest of their careers, even lives.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

I received some of the best training I've ever had in journalism through IJNR. Frank and Maggie bring together informed and thoughtful experts in all realms of things environmental. They also manage to facilitate productive discussions among the journalist-participants.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5


It’s no exaggeration to say that participating in an IJNR journalism fellowship was one of the most stimulating and enjoyable experiences I've had as a reporter and writer. With twenty years in the industry I’ve attended dozens of conferences and participated in many fellowships, but the IJNR expedition is truly unique.


In a time when traditional journalism seems to be a in a free fall, the IJNR field trip experience feels like a life raft. The chance to meet the experts and practitioners in their own element, to see science unfolding in an outdoor laboratory of nature, is exciting, and to experience the comradery of fellow journalists and mentoring of elders is invigorating as well.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

It is a privilege to know first-had the lasting impact IJNR has on its participants, both as professionals and as people. When I first encountered IJNR, I had never had the opportunity to spend time with another reporter who wanted to specialize in environmental journalism. My nine-day journey with a busload of fellows supported and encouraged my commitment like nothing else could. Once the bus ride is over, IJNR fellows continue to challenge each other. I’m continually blown away by the outstanding contributions IJNR fellows are making to honest reporting that dodges preconceived notions and avoids easy conclusions. I am grateful for the investment IJNR makes in people.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

The great thing about IJNR is learning about emerging environmental issues on the ground. You're hearing from the experts, while you're also in the field. It's like going to a cool seminar, but you're not in a sterile classroom or conference center. You're actually outdoors and learning.
I remember one night in southern Georgia helping with a controlled burn while on an IJNR fellowship. I'd often spoken with experts about how fire can help forests, but seeing how controlled burns are conducted was eye opening. It was interesting to learn the preparations that go into it, then how the burns are managed. We later discussed what the burning would do for the landscape. It gave me much greater insight and perspective on an issue I only knew in the abstract before.
Another great experience was simpler. Our group was taken to a mixed forest in South Carolina. In the forest, we heard birds, squirrels and other sounds of wildlife that lived in the woods. We then were taken to a pine plantation. The thing I remember most is how eerily quiet it was in the pine plantation, since it lacked a diversity of tree species. No birds or animals making sounds. The only real sound was the spring wind blowing in the pines.


Review from Guidestar

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I am a supporter and general admirer of IJNR. While I am in a different field, I value very much the expertise that IJNR provides for journalists who cover natural resource issues. I care a lot about these issues and feel confident that IJNR and their fine group is providing a much-needed service. I have kept up with their projects and am happy to support them. They get my vote! Joyce L. Hocker, Ph. D.

Review from Guidestar

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Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

IJNR took me to the intersections of science, public policy and natural splendor during my 10-day fellowship. I canoed on Tule Lake with the head of the Klamath Nation, saw bears and bald eagles, traversed the Klamath River, learned about healthy forests and the need to control fuel loading, saw the efficiency of wetlands and how this natural filtering process helps the City of Arcata with waste water treament on Humboldt Bay. These hands-on, boot-on-the-ground experiences are essential for those who report on natural resource issues and intrepret resource policy for the public. IJNR is the answer for deadline-drive journalists who struggle to get out of the office and into the field. What I experienced was more than fun, it was essential.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

As a journalist, my fellowship with IJNR helped me see how much is possible in environmental reporting, and challenged me to meet the inherent promise in every story I tell. Our 10-day trip was intense. We covered hundreds of miles and talked about climate change, water use, hatcheries v. wild fish, logging practices, grazing standards, the reintroduction of wolves and more. We got to meet interesting people on all sides of every issue. I can't imagine how an organization could touch more hot topics and go more into depth. As the pressure builds -- on the natural environment and within the journalism industry -- the importance of IJNR will only rise.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

IJNR helped train me to do my job.
It is run by people who are respected in the field.
The 10 days I spent on this fellowship provided a wealth of information that informed my reporting for years to come.
IJNR staff continued to encourage me long after the fellowship ended.
At a time when newsrooms have fewer resources, nonprofits that assist them are crucial.
I've expressed my gratitude by donating to the organization and hope others will join me.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

The Institutes for Journalism and Natural Resources is the best organization I have been associated with during my nearly 40 years in the field of journalism. Through intensive field trips, the IJNR staff creates for its fellows an experience that provides immediate professional development. Moreover, the staff manages to create a collegial atmosphere among recipients of fellowships so that the learning continues for years afterward. The seeds sown by IJNR continue to bear fruit in ways IJNR staff members do not even know about. It is a great organization.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've enjoyed IJNR's expeditions since they started in the mid-'90s. I began as a teenager tasked with hauling coolers full of beverages from site to site. I wound up as person who cares deeply about the environment and who wants to see America's newsrooms far better-equipped to the myriad natural-resource stories that have a huge impact on the quality of life for communities across the country. IJNR provides an outstanding service to an industry that desperately needs their thoughtful approach to professional development.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

IJNR organized a tour of environmental points of interest around Lake Erie in May, 2009 for a group of journalists, both English and French speaking from the U.S. and Canada. I was one of them. The experience was superb in every way. It was well organized, informative and provided a great opportunity to meet and disccus issues with other journalists and colleagues. The access to sites such as the large dairy operation in Michigan, fishery in Lake Erie, and power facilities near Niagara Falls was extraordinary. There were background briefings with leaders in a wide variety of environmental issues and there was particular care taken to provide many sides of each story. The tour was thought provoking and inspiring and did a great deal to promote more thoughtful environmental journalism. IJNR is an organization that should be strongly supported.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

I went on a 2007 IJNR expedition in Montana and found it incredibly helpful as a reporter newly arrived to the region. Frank and his team were able to stir up so many story ideas that almost four years later I'm still putting them to use. All in all a great organization providing a valuable service to reporters and the public.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

There are few opportunities for journalists to get crucial hands-on experience in science and environmental topics. This is an amazing experience and an important pillar in the support of a well-educated press.

Review from Guidestar

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

There is a tremendous dearth of good science and environmental reporting in the U.S. today. Mainstream media only seem to respond when there is a huge disaster, like the BP oil well blowout.
IJNR is able to get reporters from cash strapped news organizations into the field... to see and hear and smell and ponder important nature, wildlife, and environmental stories. Having an idea of what ecosystems are like in "normal" times helps reporters understand and explain the situation when nature is in the midst of a crisis.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

IJNR is a fantastic organization, vitally needed at a time when media outlets are scaling back on staff as well as professional development opportunities for reporters and editors. Covering environmental issues well demands knowledge of the subject covered, a critical eye, and an appreciation for the complexity of viewpoints and perspectives. IJNR expedition fellowships take journalists into the field and into the heart of many of the most important environmental issues of the day. I was a fellow in November 2009 in the American Southwest, specifically New Mexico, to study how this region is emblematic of the nation's reliance on 20th century sources of energy, such as highly polluting coal, and at the same time at the cutting edge of developing alternative sources of energy, including wind and solar. We toured wind farms by air, talked with coal executives, and saw how Native American communities are adopting 21st century solar energy technology to improve their economic standing -- among many other activities. The staff of IJNR was wonderful -- organized, supportive and incredibly inspiring. I met some terrific journalists, and two years later I still keep in touch with many of them.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have had two fellowships with this organization. They take you into the field and recharge your journalism batteries, sending you back to your news organization with a fresh eye and renewed vigor.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

my fellowship with IJNR provided a mid-career boost to my reportage on the environment. the fellowship took place in Wisconsin, where I was able to learn hands-on in the field from experts. the fellowship also allowed me to interact with other journalists from around the country and share ideas and approaches to reporting. this is an organization well worth supporting because it gives reporters and editors a rare chance to spend time away from the newsroom, learning more in depth about the topics on which they report, in turn benefitting readers.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

There is no other program like IJNR, bringing together journalists from around the country and the world to learn about natural resource issues -- in the field -- in key regions around the US.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

This is an organization which is fighting to keep alive an endangered species - environmental journalism. Their good work and their efforts to expand the resources available to environmental journalists are helping to bring a higher awareness of critical issues involving natural resources.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

IJNR has an extremely important mission, using the craft of journalism to educate the general public and policymakers about the most pressing environmental issues of our time. The old economic model for daily journalism is broken. While the industry is struggling to find its feet during in this historic time of transition, IJNR is working hard to make sure the biggest, most important, and most complex environmental news stories don't fall between the cracks. It has helped hundreds of journalists during the last 15 years, but there are thousands more who need IJNR's help, mentoring and support.

Client Served

Rating: 5

The BP oil spill in the Gulf has shown the need for training that helps reporters explain highly technical environmental issues to the public.
But these are not one-time events - hydraulic fracturing, climate change, industrial over-fishing, subsidies for alternative energy and transportation- in a world that is fast approaching the limits of resources that have long been considered limitless, every decision we make have implications for sustainability and trade-offs that challenge our ideas of economic freedom and social justice.
IJNR, in my opinion, has the most effective and accessible methods for teaching reporters not only what they need to know to understand these complex issues but how to engage both sides to tell a story that is fair and accurate.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

To comprehend the ecological wonderland that is the Great Lakes, you must get to know Lake Erie -- the shallowest and warmest of them all, yet home to the most abundant fishery. The Institutes for Journalism and Natural Resources' Great Waters Institute in May 2009 provided a crash course on the challenges confronting this fascinating inland sea. I was among a group of journalists fortunate enough to take part in the expedition.

Beginning with a cruise on the St. Clair River, ground zero in the debate over low water levels on the upper lakes, we embarked on a nine-day circle tour of the Lake Erie basin. Among the stops: Ohio State University's Stone Laboratory on Gibraltar Island; the Cleveland waterfront; Niagara Falls; the Ontario fishing villages of Port Stanley and Wheatley; and Pelee Island. We observed scientists taking water samples for quality analysis and laborers filleting perch and walleye. We heard experts debate how best to stop the flood of invasive species into the Great Lakes and the future of wind power in the region. Among the highlights was a boat trip to an uninhabited island for a look at damage wrought by a surging population of double-crested cormorants. Evenings provided time for food and fellowship with like-minded journalists who became fast friends.

At a time when many news outlets are reducing travel budgets and cutting back on the environmental coverage, the importance of IJNR cannot be overstated. The Lake Erie institute enabled me to step away from the crush of daily deadlines and learn the issues in more relaxed and authentic settings than the newsroom. It introduced me to scientists and policymakers who remain valuable news sources, provided a wealth of background knowledge and inspired a lengthy list of story ideas. For all this, my company paid only the cost of getting me to and from Detroit, the anchor city.

I'd strongly urge any journalist with an interest in the environment to seek out an IJNR institute. As an Associated Press correspondent based in Michigan, I have been honored to take part in five IJNR Great Waters expeditions. Each has enriched me professionally as well as personally.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

I attended IJNR's 2009 Energy Country Institute with an outstanding group of journalists. For many, this was valuable time away from their busy newsrooms, a rare opportunity to explore environmental issues in greater depth without the pressure of deadlines. I, on the other hand, was looking to return to environmental journalism after some years away from it, and further develop my knowledge and skills. IJNR provided the inspiration, the story ideas, the mentoring and the practical tools to help me take significant steps toward that professional goal. I have since published stories about renewable energy development on tribal lands that were a direct result of the contacts I made and conversations I had while participating in the IJNR institute. The program was comprehensive and extremely well-organized, designed with the understanding that it is a challenge to get these important, complex stories told in a news environment that increasingly favors speed and quantity over quality. Here, an exceptional group of journalists had the space to think about their professional values and start developing some important stories. For the IJNR staff, this is a labor of love, and their support of the participants extends well beyond the nine-day program. They always make themselves available for questions, and the participants become sources of help to each other after the program. IJNR is a much-needed resource to ensure the continuation of thoughtful, investigative environmental journalism.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

IJNR is inspirational and amazing and effective. This fantastic organization has singlehandedly improved natural resource journalism in the United States. The leadership team is incredibly effective at identifying key trends and bringing journalists / scientists / policy makers / natural resource managers on site, to contemplate, discuss, dissect the matters at hand in the places at stake.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

As a journalist, IJNR was one of the most rewarding professional experiences I've had. The time we spent on and around the waters between the U-S and Canada --learning about issues ranging from algae blooms to invasive species to fishery concerns to cormorant overgrowth to snakes and their challenges-- was invaluable.

Each day required one to be fully engaged...listening, seeing, learning, experiencing important natural challenges in situ. The learning curve was steep...and made me long for more.

Every angle, opinion, side-of-the-coin was fairly presented and exhaustively thorough.... exactly what a journalist is supposed to do with his or her story research and presentation. I learned a new environmental language (words like "thermocline") and it has served me well in the past couple of years since I participated in the IJNR program.

The experience and goodwill and intelligence of the leaders and the IJNR group as a whole as staggering.

This is a program well worth every cent it takes to keep it healthy.
Go IJNR!!

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

Like other journalism fellowships, IJNR puts journalists and experts together to help the former better understand environmental issues and their repercussions. Unlike other programs, IJNR puts journalists on the sites where these stories are unfolding. Sometimes that's on a wind farm. Sometimes it's a Superfund site. Sometimes it's out in the woods late at night listening to a man howl at wolves. Or sitting down to a meal of fresh fish, flanked by two people who each see the other as a threat to his own existence: an American sportfisherman on one side, a Canadian commercial fisherman one the other and the air thick with resentment. Whatever the case, IJNR doesn't just tell, it shows. And that depth of experience allows journalists to understand the scientific, cultural and economic impacts of each issue they explore. It is unparalleled in my experience.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

An airborne view of a solar field, an inside look at a controversial coal-fired power plant, a discussion of tribal energy initiatives on site at a pueblo ... an energy program with the Institutes for Journalism & Natural Resources gave me and my fellow journalists an invaluable look at the real-world consequences of policy decision. It was a one-week cram course that included dozens of experts, providing extensive background and contacts for future stories. I wrote a piece for our Sunday Viewponts section based directly on the IJNR program, including an on-the-ground looi at how a rancher is profiting from solar. More than a year later, I'm still drawing on the the perspective of the program (and even the photos I took) for editorials about Arizona's efforts to expand the use of alternative ener;gy and build its solar energy sector.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

I am a reporter who had the good fortune to participate in two IJNR expeditions. The organization and its leaders, Frank and Maggie Allen, are experts both at presenting the nuances of environmental and rural community issues and at challenging journalists to do justice to those nuances with excellent storytelling. Thanks to my fellowships with IJNR, I am connected with helpful sources on a range of issues and I am part of a network of experienced, accomplished journalists.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have been fortunate to join IJNR for three "institutes" in Montana and New Mexico. All three experiences were tremendously inspiring and educational. The intense seminars fill your brain with facts, context and story ideas that I found useful long after I returned to the daily grind, which for me is in public radio in the Pacific Northwest.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

A wonderful program that I would recommend to anyone. The commitment to the environment and to helping journalists understand the complex issues related to the environment are outstanding. A truly good program that has provided immeasurable benefit to me in my professional life.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

The Institute for Journalism and Natural Resources helps journalists gain a fuller understanding of environmental issues through trips which immerse them in all sides of a issue and hands-on experience with research, as well as opportunities for mentoring.
As a participant in the Great Lakes Waters 2010 trip around Lake Ontario, I learned the depth of some of the greatest threats to the Great Lakes ecosystem. The leaders of the trip presented us both, or more frequently, all, sides of the issues.

Lauren S.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I participated in a week long training with IJNR and it was truly a wonderful experience. The institute allowed me to learn about and understand complex environmental issues away from my deadlines in the newsroom. Environmental issues often have a broad range of causes and impacts, many of which are rarely clear at the surface. The IJNR training truly improved our news coverage of energy, which was the focus of my institute.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

IJNR is an outstanding organization for journalists who are just starting out, or those who have worked in the field for years. IJNR provides an extended step-back opportunity for journalists who cover the environment to learn more about what they do, from fellow journalists and experts.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 4

This was an incredibly valuable experience for me as a young journalist, because it allowed me to learn about issues concerning the Great Lakes and surrounding areas alongside more experienced journalists. I have kept in contact with some of the other journalists, and I walked away from the experience with a better understanding of the Great Lakes and plenty of story ideas.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

The most rewarding learning experience of my journalistic career. I came away with a deeper understanding of environmental issues in the Great Lakes region and a wealth of expert sources. I'm a better environmental journalist today thanks to the IJNR,

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

In my time as an environmental journalists I attended two IJNR institutes, one in the Klamath country of southern Oregon and northern California and another in New Mexico that focused on energy issues.
To understand the admiration journalists have for the IJNR experience, consider that my editors never hesitated to let me take a week or more of paid time to attend an IJNR institute. They knew I'd come back not only with story ideas ready to publish, but a deeper understanding of the subject matter in my coverage area that would inform my reporting into the future.
In a media environment of perpetual deadlines and truncated story telling, IJNR provides a valuable resource by getting journalists out of the newsroom and into the field with experts from all sides. These contacts, carefully cultivated by Frank and Maggie, demonstrate their trust in IJNR by speaking frankly in a way they likely never thought they would to a horde of inquisitive reporters bearing notebooks, cameras and audio recorders.
This experience benefits not only the reporters involved but the public they ultimately serve.
For these reasons, I encourage anyone who believes in the importance of an informed public to support IJNR.



Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

Terrific organization. As a public radio journalist I was lucky enough to have three opportunities to attend IJNR institutes, focusing on various environmental crises in the western U.S. I learned things that have informed my journalism ever since, and met colleagues I have kept as friends who share my interests. After my first institute I was inspired to produce a series of features on river issues on the West Coast, connecting the problem of endangered salmon to hydropower and other engineering of rivers. Now I am writing a book soon to be published, having taken my interest in rivers to South Asia. The organization provides training of unusual depth, allowing the reporters to interact with a range of experts across the spectrum of interest groups. We spend several days with these experts, not just an hour or two of talk followed by Q&A. Reporters can build a network of sources and colleagues through these institutes, as well as gain story ideas and much fascinating and useful knowledge.

Kathy W.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I've had the privilege of attending three separate "institutes": in-depth, on-the-ground, immersion "courses," if you will, in environmental issues, and each one has been invaluable to furthering my knowledge and understanding of the challenges facing the west, including wildfire, wildlife management, mining and logging. These days, few reporters have the luxury of the time or the budget to get out and see what they're reporting on. Instead, they're working the phones, which leaves them vulnerable to spin from both the right and the left. By taking journalists out of the newsroom and into the world they cover, IJNR is not only improving the quality of journalism, it's encouraging intelligent discourse, which leads to better public policy. And we can definitely use more of that.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

FRANK AND MAGGIE ALLEN HAVE BEEN FRIENDS OF MINE SINCE THE SUMMER OF 1989 WHEN FRANK WROTE A PIECE FOR THE WALL STREET JOURNAL ABOUT OUR NON-PROFIT MEDICAL CLINIC CALLED "THE CLINIC FOR SPECIAL CHILDREN." FRANKS SKILL AS A WRITER CHANGED MANY LIVES FOR THE BETTER.

FRANK AND MAGGIE ALLEN REMAIN, AFTER 20 YEARS OF DIFFICULT WORK TO SURVIVE AS AN INDEPENDENT INSTITUTE FOR SERIOUS ENVIRONMENTAL JOURNALISM, PASSIONATE ABOUT TEACHING AND PASSIONATE ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF THOUGHTFUL INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALISM - AS THIS PERTAINS TO ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES AND TO THE FULL FIELD OF JOURNALISM.

THEIR COMBINED SKILLS AS WRITERS AND EDUCATORS MAKE THEIR "INSTITUTES" RARE AND IMPORTANT EXPERIENCES FOR SERIOUS WRITERS OF ALL BACKGROUNDS AND INTERESTS.

D. HOLMES MORTON MD, DIRECTOR, CO-FOUNDER, THE CLINIC FOR SPECIAL CHILDREN.
EMAIL TO THE ALLEN'S

Dear Frank and Maggie,

Thought you would enjoy the attached comment from Geeta Anand from the WALL STREET JOURNAL, who is doing a 20 year follow-up piece.

Also, a recent article by Mary MORTON (DAUGHTER) in GeoTimes, and her story about climbing Mt. Cotopaxi called "Suffer Fest."


Best,


Holmes

It's amazing how many people here remember Frank Allen's story. I was
just talking to Laurie Hays, who is investigative editor at the paper,
and telling her about the story about your clinic and the hospital
bills. She asked if I'd read Frnak Allen's piece. Turns out she was in
the Philadelphia bureau when it was written. She says it was her idea
and she couldn't get to it so she asked Frank if he would drive out and
check it out--and it became one of the most important and memorable
pieces we (the WSJ) ever did. I was pretty amazed the story stayed with her for 19
years!


Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

As a journalist covering the Great Lakes and energy and environment issues nationwide for a number of publications including the Washington Post and New York TImes, IJNR has been a truly invaluable resource for me. In fact it is no exaggeration to say it has shaped the course of my career thanks to a 2005 expedition around the Great Lakes which was my first indepth introduction to many environmental and energy issues; and subsequent expeditions including the Energy Country Institute which gave me concrete story ideas and deep background knowledge on environment and energy issues. IJNR is notable for among other things helping journalists tell stories that I feel contribute to a more sustainable and healthy planet while also being fully objective and exploring all the intricacies and complexities of these stories, giving full credit to the industry and other viewpoints which are sometimes demonized by the environmental movement. The staff and leadership of IJNR have such an obvious passion for journalism, the environment and the individual journalists with whom they work, it truly is an honor and a pleasure to be involved with the organization. I would recommend IJNR expeditions and events to any journalist, especially young journalists looking for direction and background knowledge and a wonderful network of peers.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 4

IJNR offers unparalleled opportunities for journalists to become informed about complex natural resource topics in the field by inviting experts on field trips. This approach is successful because it gives fellows context they wouldn't have a from a classroom setting or via phone interivews in their own newsrooms.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

I attended an IJNR institute focusing on the Pacific Northwest about 11 years ago. Our group of journalists had the opportunity to meet, listen to, question and learn from an impressive array of experts on several of the key natural resources/environmental issues specific to the region. The program, organized by Frank and his staff, really delivers on its goal to educate journalists in these issues so that they can provide insightful coverage with the depth, context and background that these complex issues merit.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 4

I was privileged to be on the Pacific Northwest 2007 Institute, where I gained tremendous insight into the complexity of environmental issues like fire suppression, and water conservation. The IJNR is an extremely lean, well run organization, and an excellent resource for journalists. Long may it lead Fellows into the wilderness to better understand our relationship with the natural world.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I learned alot and had fun on a week-long seminar with IJNR on environmental issues affecting the Great Lakes. As we traveled around the area, we saw first-hand the threats to the Great Lakes ecosystem and met and talked with people who were dealing directly with these issues. The highlight for me was our trip to Isle Royale in Lake Superior, one of the country's most remote national parks. There I got to hike with and interview Rolf Peterson, who for years studied the predator-prey relationship between the wolf and moose populations.

Review from Guidestar

Bruce H.

Client Served

Rating: 5

IJNR gave me important insights into environmental journalism shortly after I began covering the beat in the late 1990s. A week in Maine with IJNR staff and fellow journalists took me out of the office and into the woods to probe forestry issues and onto a lobsterman's boat to talk about marine fisheries. The experience gave me context useful in covering the beat back in North Carolina. IJNR packed the week with experts, put me in places I wouldn't otherwise have access to and took care of all logistical details. It was professionally a week well spent and personally a pleasure.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

IJNR provides an unique and incredibly valuable opportunity for environmental journalists to travel on field trips exploring complex environmental and economic issues.

They plan superbly, giving journalists chances to see problems in situ, meet representatives on all sides of an issue, and attend field workshops from IJNR staff and others on the problem, options for presenting, techniques for engaging the general public.

Although the Society for Environmental Journalists offers helpful one-day field trips at their meetings, they obviously can't offer what IJNR does in their longer format.

As "green vs jobs" and even "green vs green" (e.g. wind turbines vs bats/birds) issues become more contentious and complex, a group like IJNR is crucial for educating journalists so that can inform public and politicians on pros and cons, providing information and analysis more nuanced the deluge of one-sided inputs from energy, development, transportation, agriculture, fishing, tourism and other lobbyists.

Although I was reasonably well informed on both politics and facts about energy resource extraction and environmental fallout, IJNR took me to Wyoming to see wind turbines, coal mines, oil fields -- and the battle over habitats and endangered species, include grouse and wolves, which I knew from Florida but hadn't seen in the West.

While it was a shock to see an area of WY I remembered as "virgin" covered with wells, I'm all too aware of how much petroleum and natural gas I use.

I was grateful for chance to see drilling up close and to learn about "mud" (drilling fluid), which has recently become important issue here in my own state of MD and elsewhere in Appalachians, as "fracking" for natural gas threatens water supplies but also pays farmers for mineral rights under their land.

Coal mining has long been an important source of revenue and energy in Appalachian region (my grandfather was modestly famous coal engineer, while his son, my father was adamant about preserving water quality), so I was grateful to be able to tour a giant open-pit coal mine. (The mountain-top mines in WV are not eager to give tours to journalists.)

I have seen wind turbines outside WY up close, but chiefly in the "green vs green" context, so it was very helpful to learn how farmers need and appreciate getting revenue from otherwise underused land.

Frank and Maggie Allen, and colleagues who have since moved on, were very helpful at drawing out our sources without dominating conversation. They also lead writing workshops and hosted additional presentations (around campfires and in lodge lounges) to let local natural resource and industry representatives provide more information.

The only complaints I can remember are trivial -- lodge first night stuck several of us in smoking vs non-smoking room. And at one farm practicing a unique form of wetland water conservation (in arid region!), I ended up sleeping on deck (fine -- my choice), but became unwilling second host to border collie fleas! (Both nothing compared to what I ran into in Africa.)

A wonderful, never-to-be-replicated experience! I urge you to help them keep it thriving.

I don't understand question below, so don't know how to answer. "Don't know" doesn't seem to be an option.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

Taking part in an IJNR expedition was one of the most rewarding experiences of my journalism career. The IJNR staff was knowledgeable and able to tap into expertise that helped me understand some very important things about environmental challeges we face. With a great sense of fun combined with the desire to make journalists and hence the public better informed about the issues we all face, IJNR is making a valuable contribution to our world. I hope IJNR lives long and is able to help other journalists reach a greater understanding of the world we inherit and will pass on. I have recommended IJNR strongly to my colleagues and if given the opportunity would like to take another journey of discovery with them.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have been a speaker for IJNR field seminars during many years in the past decade. It has been a rich and rewarding experience for the speakers and the participants from all forms of media background. The philosophy of IJNR is based on long experience with environmental journalism, and the selected fellows benefit greatly from their week in the field.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

As the human population grows and places increasing pressure on crucial natural resources, we will inevitably become progressively more reliant upon science and technology to solve problems of resource availability -- ie. clean water, productive soils, quality food, uncontaminated air and energy. It is essential, then, that journalists have the tools to critically analyze and report on that convergent place where land use, science, politics, economics and sociology overlap. That is precisely what IJNR trains journalists to do. I have traveled with IJNR as a journalist-fellow, and can say from experience that the hands-on approach -- immersing reporters directly, for extended learning trips -- is tremendously effective. Any honest review and discussion of land-use policy must be grounded in a depth of understanding made possible only by the sort of rich context IJNR provides. It is an important and unique mission.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 4

IJNR believes telling environmental stories is hard work. Sure, journalists can write, "the species is threatened and the future looks bleak." And while that's sometimes part of the story, we've read it before. And it's not the whole story. So IJNR trains journalists to dig deeper, write better, and try harder. A tremendously well run organization.

Review from Guidestar

Tom H.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I've been a fellow on four expeditions, two full-length (Great Waters 2003 and Great Waters 2008) and two mini-excursions (Northern Wisconsin 2009 and Great Waters Reunion 2010) and would go out again in a heartbeat. These guys really have the formula for success down pat and are dedicated to the oft-overlooked specialty craft of environmental journalism. The sources and sights they select are top notch. It can be an exhaustive pace, but it's inspiring and invigorating. It's the kind of experience that'll stick with you and help you guide your career for years to come.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

The folks at IJNR bring passion, integrity, intelligence and a sense of humour to their work. Going on one, or more, of their environmental journalism trips/discoveries is great fun, and deeply educational. They strive to see and tell stories from multiple perspectives, and to impart their love for telling stories. Good people. Important work. Highly recommended.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

I gained invaluable experience as a fellow on an IJNR expedition, learning from the experts we visited as well as from the other journalists on the trip. It fills a need very few organizations address: the need for reporters and writers to learn how to hone their craft while delving deep into environmental issues with the scientists, politicians, activists, and developers whose decisions make policy. It was remarkably balanced and thorough, and at the end, I watched the resulting informed stories by fellows roll in from newspapers, radio, magazines and television. An absolutely essential nonprofit organization for anyone who cares about journalism in this country.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

In 2007 I was accepted as a fellow to participate in the IJNR High Country Institute and the experience has changed my life and my career as a journalist. During the fellowship I learned how to identify the most important stakeholders in environment news stories, accurately represent the scope of their respective arguments, and produce reports that truly add to the collective public understanding of my audience on a given topic, rather than overwhelm or otherwise alienate listeners/readers.

I learned all this in the breathtakingly beautiful state of Montana, where I gained new perspective on the power of nature to enrich human life.

This organization is more relevant than ever, as is evidenced by the growing apathy in the public and the major media organizations towards our natural environment and the growing threats against it.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

IJNR grants journalists a priceless gift: time away from deadlines and in the field to see, touch, experience, and question the environments they cover. The tour I went on--a trip around northern Wisconsin in the fall of 2009--was expertly planned and a rich source of story ideas. I've incorporated information I learned about on the trip into a number of articles I've written, and have ideas banked for many more.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My experience with IJNR was one of he highlights of my life and career. I learned so much and was exposed to so much pertinent information. This program is a MUST for journalists looking to expand their knowledge. Due to the IJNR tour, I have had hundreds of topics to report on. They are an amazing organization and I am very hopeful that they will be able to continue their great work.

Review from Guidestar

Advisor

Rating: 4

We have worked with IJNR for approximately fifteen years. In that time frame we have advised IJNR and its management team successfully. It is rewarding to see a lcient listen to your advice and then to have the client act upon the advice in a positive manner.

We appreciate IJNR for its role in society and its ehtics and behavior in the marketplace.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

This is a great organization. Journalists from newspapers and radio stations without the resources to provide training receive intensive and extensive education on environmental issues that pertain to the region the journalist serves.

Review from Guidestar

Donor

Rating: 5

Since learning about IJNR two years ago, I remain thoroughly impressed with the role this organization plays in keeping career journalists throughout North America informed about ongoing issues of concern regarding the health of our environment. Through its in-depth topic introductions and evaluations, it reminds us all of the need to continually pay attention to the value of natural resources. The hands-on, field-expert technique it uses is especially effective. I think this approach is so much for valuable than merely speaking with business or political spokespersons.

Review from Guidestar

Donor

Rating: 5

I am a reader not a writer. After auditing the Energy Country Institute I know whatever an IJNR fellow writes I can read with confidence. When I look for unbiased, accurate information I first for articles by IJNR Fellows.