CIR launches campaign to capture the power of investigative reporting


BERKELEY, Calif. (Oct. 10, 2013) — The Center for Investigative Reporting (CIR) and advertising agency Goodby Silverstein & Partners (GSP) are launching a campaign to expand the profile of CIR and emphasize the power of investigative reporting to protect democracy.

The campaign, which GSP is producing pro bono, includes a new corporate identity for CIR – from a new logo to online videos to creative direction for a new website – and an ongoing series of dramatic posters that will be distributed through CIR’s website and in print. The campaign focuses on the act of redaction, a tool of government secrecy, and investigative reporting as the antidote, revealing the truth and serving as a check and balance on abuse.

“We believe in the power of an informed public, an ideal that is under increasing threat,” said Phil Bronstein, executive chairman of CIR. “As the business model for journalism has unraveled and in some cases collapsed over the last decade, most newsrooms are no longer doing resource-intensive investigative reporting that reveals valuable information.”

“CIR is creating some of the most high-impact journalism that appears around the country and the world through hundreds of partnerships with media, from print to radio to video to digital,” Bronstein said. “But at a time when the facts are more elusive and aggressively hidden than ever, we believe the public we serve should know more about CIR, what we do and how we do it.”

The work of CIR is particularly close to the hearts of GSP co-founders Jeff Goodby and Rich Silverstein.

“We are returning to our journalistic roots,” Silverstein said. Early in their careers, Goodby was a reporter for Boston Herald and Silverstein was an art director at Rolling Stone.

“Plus, one of GSP’s first clients was the San Francisco Examiner, which is where we first met Phil,” Silverstein said.

“We want to build public awareness of CIR’s work and the benefits of multimedia, multiplatform investigative journalism,” he added.

The 36-year-old organization has gone through a complete reinvention over the last five years, under the leadership of Bronstein and Executive Director Robert J. Rosenthal, growing from a staff of seven into the largest investigative reporting team in the country, with 72 staff members.

In the past few weeks alone, CIR has bolstered its efforts in innovation with a host of accomplishments:

  • Its animated graphic-novel video “In Jennifer’s Room” won an Emmy Award for new approaches to current news coverage.
  • The America’s Worst Charities project, produced with the Tampa Bay Times, won a Barlett & Steele Gold Award for Investigative Business Journalism.
  • The organization launched the pilot episode of “Reveal,” a one-hour investigative show for public radio produced with PRX. It is airing on more than 100 stations, including the top 10 markets.
  • CIR released “Hairnet Hero,” its first video game, designed to teach children and their parents to make healthier food choices.

The GSP campaign presents a new public identity for the organization, one that reflects CIR’s high-impact reporting, its creativity in production and storytelling, and its role as an innovative leader in journalism.


Investigative reporting is an essential pillar of a democratic society. For more than three decades, The Center for Investigative Reporting has relentlessly pursued and revealed injustices that otherwise would have remained hidden from the public. Today, CIR is upholding this legacy and looking forward, working at the forefront of journalistic innovation to tell stories that make a difference and reach diverse audiences of all ages, across the aisle and worldwide.

CIR’s stories have appeared in hundreds of news outlets, including NPR News, PBS FRONTLINE, PBS NewsHour, CNN, the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Washington Post, the San Francisco Chronicle, The Sacramento Bee, The Daily Beast and American Public Media’s Marketplace. CIR has received numerous journalism awards, including an Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Silver Baton, George Polk Awards, Emmy Awards, Investigative Reports and Editors Awards, and the MacArthur Award for Creative & Effective Institutions. It was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in 2012 and 2013.


Goodby Silverstein & Partners is one of the world’s most respected and most awarded advertising agencies. Founded in 1983, GSP is headquartered in San Francisco, with an office in New York. More than 360 employees serve a broad array of accounts, including Frito-Lay, the California Milk Processor Board (known for the “Got milk?” campaign), Adobe, Cisco, TD Ameritrade, the National Basketball Association and many others. GSP is part of the Omnicom Group.



Goodby Silverstein & Partners: The Center for Investigative Reporting:, 415-955-4533, 310-395-2544