This member briefing was organized in partnership with the American Journalism Project and the Lumina Foundation. All members and supporters of Media Impact Funders have the opportunity to initiate and produce issue-related programming for their peers. Learn more about member briefings.

Across the country, community-based philanthropic organizations are tapping into the promise of local news, recognizing it as an important civic institution that needs strategic, focused support. In February, the American Journalism Project announced the Indiana Local News Initiative—a new, statewide news initiative funded by $10 million from a coalition of Indiana organizations and philanthropies. The initiative already has buy-in from Indiana-based news outlets, and will help launch two new news operations, including a Gary-based newsroom led by Capital B.

In this conversation, Sarabeth Berman, CEO, American Journalism Project, moderated a discussion with Michael Ouimette, Chief Investment Officer at the American Journalism Project, Kevin Corcoran, Strategy Director at the Lumina Foundation and Lauren Williams, CEO and Co-Founder of Capital B. The conversation detailed the successful fundraising efforts around the Indiana Local News Initiative and the launch of Capital B’s forthcoming newsroom in Gary, Indiana.

Watch the recording:


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Media Impact Funders

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Media Impact Funders traces its roots back to the Council on Foundations, a longtime philanthropy-serving organization. Formerly Grantmakers in Film, Video & Television, MIF began on a volunteer basis in 1984 as an affinity group for funders interested in the power of film to highlight social issues. Reflecting changes in technology and media behavior over the past decade, it was renamed Grantmakers in Film & Electronic Media (GFEM) and formally incorporated in 2008 to advance the field of media arts and public interest media funding. It had 45 members and was headed by former MacArthur Foundation Program Officer Alyce Myatt. GFEM was renamed Media Impact Funders in 2012 and has since expanded its strategy to include a broad range media funding interests such as journalism, immersive technologies, media policy and more. Since that time, MIF has grown to more than 80 organizational members representing some of the largest foundations, and holds more than 40 in-person and online events yearly.