Carolina Public Press is an independent nonprofit news organization dedicated to nonpartisan, in-depth and investigative news built upon the facts and context North Carolinians need to know. Our award-winning, breakthrough journalism dismantles barriers and shines a light on the critical overlooked and under-reported issues facing our state’s 10.2 million residents.
Founded in 2011 and originally established to focus on the issues, topics and challenges faced by Western North Carolina, the organization announced, in February 2018, its expansion to cover all of North Carolina. Since its launch, Carolina Public Press has steadily grown to attract a statewide and national audience; financial support from hundreds of individuals and foundations across the region, state and nation; and has had proven impact in the community through its nonpartisan, unique reporting.
Our staff of professional journalists is committed to ethical, nonpartisan reporting on real and important issues facing our communities, and we are committed to being a source of civic and civil dialogue on these issues, regardless of political affiliation.
There has never been a more important time to build a nonpartisan, fact-based and context-rich source of trusted news in North Carolina. The for-profit press is under tremendous pressure, as legacy and traditional media organizations continue to face undeniable challenges in reach and impact. Layoffs, downsizing and restrictions to news and information are common, with the public left with less information about the critical issues facing North Carolina: water quality, development, jobs and the economy, education, housing, criminal justice, gerrymandering, fair elections and more. Investigative reporting is a vital public service, but one that is increasingly hard to find.
A 2018 report from the Democracy Fund called the state’s media “disconnected.” News deserts are becoming more pronounced; state budgets and laws pass “without deep and sustained news coverage of the impact those decisions will have on people’s lives.” This leaves, the report continues, people from the North Carolina mountains to the coast feeling distanced from these issues, despite the day-to-day impact they may have.
And as corporate pressures on media continue to only increase, the public is struggling to find trustworthy sources of nonpartisan, in-depth and impactful news. “Currently, trust in the major institutions of American democracy has fallen to troubling lows amid a rapidly changing information ecosystem. Without trust, democracy cannot function,” writes The Knight Commission on Trust, Media and Democracy.
Carolina Public Press is one solution to these troubling threats to public trust and the decrease in nonpartisan in-depth and investigative reporting in North Carolina. With thousands of influential, active and passionate subscribers across the state, the financial support of foundations and individuals across North Carolina and the country, an entrepreneurial and innovative outlook, and an award-winning professional staff of North Carolina journalists at the helm, we are committed to bringing world-class, breakthrough journalism to the state’s 10.2 million residents.
In 2017 alone, we heard from residents and readers from nearly every corner of the state, particularly in response to our statewide investigative series on the troubling issues facing the state’s adult care home system, one that cares for thousands of North Carolinians who require access to 24/7 care for a variety of health concerns, including mental illness. State lawmakers have committed to a review of the state-run regulatory system overseeing the industry.
Investigative reporting such as this is critical to a working and vibrant and active democracy. We invest deeply in journalism that shines a light on the actions, inaction, wrongdoings and potential corruption of elected officials, government agencies and corporations in our state, issues that often exist – and sometimes thrive – in the darkness and shadows of our communities. We provide a critical function and service to the community of offering “checks and balances” on the power and influence local, regional and statewide government has on the lives of every North Carolina resident.
We also believe that this type of news and real, nonpartisan civic and civil public discourse go hand-in-hand. In 2017 alone, we held seven public forums on some of the most pressing issues and public policy conversations facing our communities – from domestic violence to the well-being of children, from higher education and the economy to the future of renewable energy, from housing for those with mental illness to the reduction in services at rural hospitals. Our forums reached an audience of more than 400 people, with live-streaming reaching participants across North Carolina, Tennessee, South Carolina and Virginia.
In short, we want the news in our state to be better, to ask harder questions and to go deeper. We want information to be open and transparent, not hidden. We want to foster an informed democracy and civic — and civil — dialogue on the most-pressing issues facing our local, regional and statewide communities. We want residents to have the trusted information, analysis and news they need to take action in their own lives.
Thank you for reading, participating, asking questions, offering suggestions, sending in tips and being in touch.
Carolina Public Press awards and recognition:
- 2012 New Media Women Entrepreneur award, presented to Angie Newsome, Executive Director and Founder (one of four in the nation; presented by J-Lab and The McCormick Foundation)
- 2013 featured new media startup by Mediashift
- 2016 statewide media award from National Alliance for Mental Health (for mental health reporting)
- 2017 regional environmental reporting award from Western North Carolina chapter of the Sierra Club (for reporting on the national forests and coal ash)
- 2017 statewide media award from Friends of Residents of Long-Term Care (for mental health reporting)
- 2017 awards from the N.C. Press Association, including first for general excellence, first for investigative reporting, and first and second for local/county government reporting (seven awards total)
- 2018 statewide AdvaNCing the Issues award from Women AdvaNCe, presented to Angie Newsome, Executive Director and Founder
- 2018 awards from the N.C. Press Association, including the Henry Lee Weathers Freedom of Information award recognizing outstanding reporting about issues of access to government records and press freedom, and first place awards in feature writing, city/county government reporting, and news photography (seven awards total)
- 2019 statewide media award, called the Golden Quill Award, from the N.C. Coalition Against Sexual Assault for reporting and community engagement about sexual assault
We are members of the Institute for Nonprofit News, Investigative Reporters and Editors and the N.C. Press Association. All our work can be found at www.carolinapublicpress.org. We also allow other nonprofit news organizations and the legacy media to share, republish or broadcast our content, so you may find some of our reporting in many of the state’s top radio, TV and print media organizations.
Carolina Public Press received its independent nonprofit 501(c)3 status from the Internal Revenue Service in April 2014. It launched in 2011 as a fiscally sponsored project of The Institute for Southern Studies. Our federal Employer Identification Number is 46-0801080. View CPP’s nonprofit designation letter from the IRS [PDF].
Contributions to Carolina Public Press are tax-deductible to the fullest extent of the law.
- You may find more about the financial supporters who make Carolina Public Press possible in our 2017 Annual Report, located here. [PDF]
- View our 2018 990 federal income tax form here. [PDF]
Mailing Address: PO Box 17595, Asheville, NC 28816
Physical Address: 4A Herman Avenue Extension, Asheville, NC 28803
Office Phone: 828-774-5290
Frequently asked questions:
Who’s doing this?
Carolina Public Press is made up of a staff and a collection of contributing reporters and photographers who are some of the best and brightest journalists in the state. Some have shot photos for The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. Some have won reporting awards for their investigative, First Amendment and environmental reporting. Some have written for small and large newspapers, conventional and independents alike. All reporting staff and contributors are vetted professional journalists, and we strive, every day, to uphold the Society of Professional Journalist’s Code of Ethics. The editors are responsible for the development of the site’s content. The Board of Directors helps set our strategic vision and plan for our financial health; they do not control, oversee or manage the day-to-day news, program or administrative operations of Carolina Public Press.
How are you funded?
Carolina Public Press is available for free through the generosity and financial support of foundations, individuals, businesses and organizations. We are a nonprofit organization, so donations are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. We are independent and not a part of an “umbrella” organization and we do not accept public funding.
We are a not-for-profit media project by design. The focus of our work is on reporting and high-quality journalism, not on selling advertising or keeping those advertisers satisfied. To make this happen, we rely on the support of those who believe in our mission and the importance of a mission-driven journalism organization dedicated to in-depth, investigative and independent reporting. We do not accept any traditional advertising. We do offer a sponsorship program.
We’ve received foundation support from The Community Foundation of Western North Carolina, the McCormick Foundation’s New Media Women Entrepreneur program, Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation, the INNovation Fund (a project of the Institute for Nonprofit News, with funding from the Knight Foundation), the Sunlight Foundation, the Fund for Investigative Journalism, the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation and the NC Local News Lab Fund. Individuals, businesses and organizations also have made donations to Carolina Public Press.
Your donation means that we’ll write another story, take another photo, start another investigation. We can always use your help. We hope you believe in the power of an independent, investigative press, too.
I want to see your 990 tax form.
View our 2018 990 federal income tax form here. [PDF]
Do you accept advertising?
We accept donations or sponsorships from organizations, educational institutions and businesses that support our mission of producing and publishing high-quality reporting for and about Western North Carolina. We do not accept traditional advertising, nor do we publish editorials or endorse political candidates, businesses or organizations.
We greatly appreciate these businesses and organizations. However, they — nor any other donor or foundation — have no influence over the content we do or do not publish or produce. The staff, editors and contributors develop, report, edit and publish our content.
What area do you cover?
We founded in 2011 to focus on the 17 westernmost counties of North Carolina. With a track record of success and an increase in demand from our audience to cover more, the organization, in February 2018, announced it will focus statewide, encompassing all 100 counties and 10.2 million residents of North Carolina.
How can I submit my press release/news tip to Carolina Public Press?
How can I become a Carolina Public Press volunteer or paid contributor?
Contact us for writer’s and photographer’s guidelines or to pitch us a story. Call our office at 828-774-5290 for details.
Volunteers are also worth their weight in gold. Contact Executive Director Angie Newsome for opportunities, which are tailored to fit your skills and availability.
Do you have any jobs or internships available?
Career opportunities may be found here.
I have an idea for a story. What do I do?
Contact the appropriate staff person.
I have another question that’s not covered here. Whom do I contact?
Feel free to email Executive Director Angie Newsome or call 828-774-5290. We are happy to help and to answer any questions you may have.