Freelance Investigative Reporters and Editors (FIRE), founded in 2007 as Project Word, develops the capacity of freelance investigative journalists from diverse backgrounds to produce investigations in the public interest, primarily by offering a suite of reporting services known as the Virtual Newsroom.

FIRE administers the Virtual Newsroom in collaboration with Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE), which contributes research and training services and acts as FIRE's fiscal sponsor. FIRE operates as a nonprofit project of IRE, but raises its own funding. FIRE operates with complete editorial independence from its funding sources.

In 2016, a pilot of FIRE launched with $200,000 in seed money from an anonymous former news reporter. Since then, FIRE has operated with support from the Ford Foundation, a two-year grant from the Jonathan Logan Family Foundation—and contributions from a community of generous individual donors. Significant support has come from the circle of friends below, to whom we are particularly grateful. We are also grateful to Craig Newmark Philanthropies for generous support since 2021 for our contract-related legal assistance

FIRE Friends
Tom Bettag
Jerome L. Dodson
Amy Domini
Paul Fischer (in memory of Lee C. Townsend and John M. Mosedale)
David Goldiner
John Lane
Andrew Lawrence
John Leacock
Charles Lewis
Carrie Lozano
Joshua Mailman
Michael McKeon
Nora McKeon
Laura Mosedale (In memory of Lee C. Townsend and John M. Mosedale)
Margie O’Driscoll
Dan Rather
Daniel Sexton
Blaine Townsend
Anonymous (2)

It's only with these friends and our foundation partners that we can serve investigative freelance reporters and the interests of an open, healthy democracy.

If you are interested in becoming a friend of FIRE by providing general support for our work or supporting reporting in particular subject areas, please visit the Donate page or email

Please join others who have come forward to enable this important work. Donate now.