Wisconsin Watch is a nonprofit newsroom that focuses on government integrity and quality of life issues. Over the last decade, it has expanded its mission to include accountability journalism in all forms on multiple platforms while becoming a hub for civic news across the state, training dozens of emerging journalists and building a distribution partnership with more than 150 Wisconsin news outlets.

Milwaukee Neighborhood News Service (NNS) is an award-winning nonprofit news organization that covers Milwaukee’s diverse neighborhoods. NNS covers stories that are important to the people who live, work and serve in city neighborhoods, on topics such as education, public safety, economic development, health and wellness, environment, recreation, employment, youth development and housing. NNS is a professionally staffed news organization housed in the Diederich College of Communication at Marquette University.

With support from the American Journalism Project, Wisconsin Watch and Neighborhood News Service will remake the ecosystem of local news in Wisconsin, taking aim at the rapid collapse of local journalism as well as the legacy gaps in news and information for communities of color.


  • Lauren Fuhrmann manages the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism (WCIJ) business and revenue team. She joined the WCIJ in 2011 as a reporter and has been associate director since 2014. She is vice president and treasurer of the Madison Pro Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists and was a member of the inaugural Institute for Nonprofit News  Emerging Leaders Council.
  • Ron Smith has led Neighborhood News Service since February 2019. He was previously the managing editor for news at USA Today and managing editor at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, and he has been an editor for The Oregonian, the Los Angeles Times, and Newsday. Prior to editorial roles, Ron worked in advertising for Los Angeles publications including LA Youth and New Expression. He holds a master's degree in leadership from Marquette University.