NEFAI 2020 Schedule

Journalists from a variety of media and all six New England states will gather online Sept. 26 to Oct. 3 to learn the latest investigative and database reporting techniques and public records access skills. The fellows chosen for this 10th annual New England First Amendment Institute reflect today’s diverse news media and come from daily and weekly newspapers, television and radio stations and online publications. Learn more about NEFAI 2020.

This year’s program features a mix of live workshops, pre-recorded presentations and “drop-ins” where faculty will be available for questions and additional instruction.

September 26

9 a.m. – 10 a.m. Keynote Speaker

Wesley Lowery | CBS News

Karen Bordeleau (Introduction) | NEFAC, Arizona State University

10 a.m. – 10:15 a.m. Break

10:15 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. Panel: Tales from the Trenches

Panelists will share their practical experience in investigative work through painstaking interviewing and use of freedom of information laws to unearth corruption and bring truth to light.

Keila Torres Ocasio | Hearst Connecticut Media Group
Laura Ungar | Kaiser Health News
Beth Healy | WBUR-Boston

Walter V. Robinson (Moderator) | The Boston Globe

September 28

5:30 p.m. – 7 p.m. Connecticut Break-Out Session

Mike Savino | WFSB-Hartford
Mary Schwind | Connecticut FOI Commission

September 29

9 a.m. – 11 a.m. Web Scraping

Maggie Mulvihill | Boston University

1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. Rhode Island Break-Out Session

Edward Fitzpatrick | The Boston Globe
Raymond A. Marcaccio | Oliverio & Marcaccio

3 p.m. – 4 p.m. Drop-In: Common Pitfalls in Accessing Documents Through FOI Requests

Drop-in sessions are an opportunity for fellows to speak with the instructors of our pre-recorded presentations and ask follow-up questions. View all pre-recorded presentations here.

Kyle Hopkins | Anchorage Daily News / ProPublica
Jenifer McKim | GBH Center for Investigative Reporting, Boston University
Eli Sherman | WPRI-Providence
Tim White | WPRI-Providence

4:30 p.m. – 6 p.m. Maine Break-Out Session

Judy Meyer | Lewiston Sun Journal
Sigmund Schutz | Preti Flaherty

September 30

9 a.m. – 11 a.m. Basic Database Analysis

Using database technology to analyze publicly available or FOI-request-won data to understand societal, financial, and economic trends is an important tool for the seasoned reporter.

Brooke Williams | Boston University

TBD Drop-In: Tips for Staying Out of Legal Trouble: Common Issues in Defamation and Invasion of Privacy

October 1

9 a.m. – 11 a.m. Advanced Database Analysis

Using database technology to analyze publicly available or FOI-request-won data to understand societal, financial, and economic trends is an important tool for the seasoned reporter.

Matt Kauffman | The Hartford Courant (formerly)

2:30 p.m. – 4 p.m. Massachusetts Break-Out Session

Peter Caruso | Caruso & Caruso
Todd Wallack | The Boston Globe

4:30 p.m. – 6 p.m. New Hampshire Break-Out Session

Richard Gagliuso | Bernstein Shur
Nancy West | InDepthNH.org

TBD Drop-In: Writing and Narrative Flow

October 2

9 a.m. – 11 a.m. Panel: Effective Sourcing

When your FOI request languishes your reporting continues. Developing sources, relationships, knowing how to evaluate what you get.

Cindy Galli | ABC News
Errin Haines | The 19th
Jennifer Levitz | The Wall Street Journal

Michael Donoghue (Moderator) | Vermont Press Association

12 p.m. – 1 p.m. Drop-In: Confrontational Interviews

Drop-in sessions are an opportunity for fellows to speak with the instructors of our pre-recorded presentations and ask follow-up questions. View all pre-recorded presentations here.

Mike Beaudet | WCVB-Boston, Northeastern University

1:30 p.m. – 3 p.m. Vermont Break-Out Session

Michael Donoghue | Vermont Press Association
Lia Ernst | ACLU of Vermont

October 3

9 a.m. – 11 a.m. Panel: Former Fellows

Hadley Barndollar | Seacoast Online
Laura Damon | Newport Daily News
Casey McDermott | New Hampshire Public Radio

Karen Bordeleau (Moderator) | NEFAC, Arizona State University

11 a.m. – 11:15 a.m. Break

11:15 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. Featured Speaker and Concluding Remarks

Margaret Sullivan | The Washington Post

Karen Bordeleau (Moderator) | NEFAC, Arizona State University

State Break-Out Sessions

State Break-Out Sessions will be scheduled according to the availability of individual fellows once they are chosen for the institute.

Connecticut | Sept. 28 | 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Maine | Sept. 29 | 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Massachusetts | Oct. 1 | 2:30 p.m. to 4 p.m.
New Hampshire | Oct. 1 | 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Rhode Island | Sept. 29 | 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Vermont | Oct. 2 | 1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m.

Pre-Recorded Presentations

The following presentations can be viewed here throughout the duration of the institute. The session instructors will also be available for live “drop-ins” at the times listed above.

Common Pitfalls in Accessing Documents Through FOI Requests

Kyle Hopkins | Anchorage Daily News / ProPublica
Jenifer McKim | GBH Center for Investigative Reporting, Boston University
Eli Sherman | WPRI-Providence

Tim White (Moderator) | WPRI-Providence

Tips for Staying Out of Legal Trouble: Common Issues in Defamation and Invasion of Privacy

Gregory V. Sullivan | Malloy & Sullivan

Writing Workshop and Narrative Flow

Jeff Howe | Northeastern University

Confrontational Interviews

Mike Beaudet | WCVB-Boston, Northeastern University