Defense Base Act Compensation Blog

The Modern Day DBA Casualty

ProPublica’s T. Christian Miller Wins the Selden Ring Award

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on February 22, 2010

Today, the Selden Ring Awards announced T. Christian Miller as the winner of their investigative reporting prize. Additionally, ProPublica’s Charles Ornstein and Tracy Weber were finalists for the award.

Miller was honored for his series about the ordeal war contractors face in trying to get legally mandated benefits from insurance companies when they are injured in war zones. Speaking for the seven-judge panel, Melanie Sill, editor of the Sacramento Bee said, “Without this groundbreaking reporting, many of these problems would not have come to light. Its impact was clear and continuing.”

The Selden Ring Award, which is administered by the USC Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism, recognizes investigations that have impact. In addition to congressional hearings and Rep. Elijah Cumming’s promise to introduce legislative reforms, Miller’s work moved insurance executives from AIG and government officials from the Labor Department to acknowledge that the system had major flaws. The Labor Department vowed to increase penalties and resolve contentious cases more quickly. In August 2009, the Pentagon released a report recommending that the system be placed into public hands and urged further examination of the difficulty in delivering benefits to injured workers. And inspectors general from both Labor and Defense began investigations.

The work was planned and edited in a collaboration between ProPublica and the Los Angeles Times. Most of the stories were published in the Times; some were first published on ABC News, Salon, and in the Washington Post. All appeared on ProPublica’s Web site. Doug Smith, the database editor of the Times, contributed significant statistical research.

Ornstein and Weber were Selden Ring finalists for their series about the failures of the California Board of Registered Nursing to properly regulate and discipline nurses with criminal pasts. Their reporting has continued with recent stories about the federal government’s incomplete database of sanctioned caregivers and our own state-by-state guide to dangers nurses.

Congratulations T., Charlie and Tracy!

Read original story here

5 Responses to “ProPublica’s T. Christian Miller Wins the Selden Ring Award”

  1. jayhawk said

    out f’n standing

  2. I just don’t under stand how an open and shut case can go on forever. I was hurt april 06 started getting paid May 06 went to court with overwelming evidence of my injury the Judge even asked why we were even there and both sides (A.I G. and my lawyer) said it was just some small legal things that had to be addressed. Well that was 03/09 and I am still waiting a year later for the judge to sign the papers.

  3. daffodils said

    Congratulations, T.
    We know you paid a heavy price for speaking truth to power, or at least as much as you thought you could get past your editors.
    Very few msm journalists today have either your guts or brains to expose the injustices you so persistently did from the start of this war contractor fiasco.
    We owe you, and from afar celebrate your well-deserved award tonight.
    Cheers!

  4. Dr. Layla Nash said

    Congratulations, T. , You are one of those men who can handle the truth, thanks Man. Hope one day we all can thank you in person.

  5. […] in 2009, its first year of operation with a complete staff.  They include a George Polk Award, the Selden Ring Award for investigative reporting, and two Investigative Reporters and Editors awards for subjects as diverse as environmental risks […]

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