The Ira A. Lipman Center led by Prof. Jelani Cobb is awarding
two additional fellowships for proposals centered on public school education
The Ira A. Lipman Center for Journalism and Civil and Human Rights at the Columbia Journalism School announced the 2019 Lipman Fellows today. Adam Serwer, staff writer for The Atlantic, and Alice Speri, criminal justice reporter for The Intercept were awarded this year’s fellowships. The center will also award two special grants to Daniel Vock, staff writer at Governing Magazine, and Maura Walz, news editor for Southern California Public Radio (KPCC) for their education-focused proposals.
“This year’s fellows will advance and expand the range of civil and human rights coverage produced by the center including issues of free speech and race, the policing of black activists and the racial segregation of public schools, a topic that is profoundly personal to Ira A. Lipman, the center’s founder,” said the selection committee consisting of Professors Dolores Barclay, Jelani Cobb, June Cross, Bill Grueskin and Alisa Solomon.
Serwer, a graduate of Columbia Journalism School, has written a number of essays on immigration and racial issues that draw on historical and quantitative research, and reporting. During his term as a fellow, Serwer will focus on free speech limitations on individuals from marginalized groups and how these prevent them from participating in debates over their fundamental rights. Speri, also a graduate of the J-School, covers criminal justice, immigration and civil rights and will examine the FBI’s policing of black activists, and its impact on local law enforcement agencies across the country.
In addition, Vock and Walz, who were each selected for a special one-time grant, will focus on school segregation. Vock, who covers state and local government for Governing Magazine, will research how data presented by real estate agencies and local governments contribute to school and neighborhood segregation. Walz, a graduate of the Columbia Journalism School, writes about K-12 and higher education for KPCC, she will examine racial segregation in Binford Middle School in Virginia. Her work will be partly informed by her personal experience as an alumna of the school as well as deep reporting.
Serwer and Speri will each receive $10,000, Vock and Walz, as the recipients of the one-time special grants, will each be awarded $5,000. The four fellows will work with a faculty member throughout the duration of their fellowships and are expected to conduct a public presentation of their work for Columbia Journalism School students.
The Ira A. Lipman Center for Journalism and Civil and Human Rights was created in 2017 with a gift from Ira A. Lipman to recognize and support the vital role of journalism in democracy, particularly as it relates to civil and human rights.
The 2019 Fellows: