Gray announces expansion of national investigative team
By Matt Collins Article may include affiliate links
Gray Television Inc. has announced a significant expansion of its national investigative team called InvestigateTV.
As part of the move, the company announced new roles on the team.
Gray promoted Lee Zurik from director of investigations to vice president of investigations.
Zurik oversees the National Investigative Team in addition to anchoring and reporting at WVUE in New Orleans.
Lee has been honored with journalism’s top honors including two George Foster Peabody Awards, three Alfred I. duPont Silver Batons, and twelve National Edward R. Murrow Awards.
Gray promoted Executive Producer of Investigations Jamie Grey, to managing editor of investigations. Grey has been with the team since 2018 producing stories, coordinating coverage and leading training events.
Gray has promoted Greg Phillips from News Director at WMC in Memphis to executive producer of investigations. In this position, Phillips returns to his investigative background, which includes eight years as assistant news director and special projects director with the investigative team at WVUE.
Gray has hired Daniela Molina as investigative producer. Molina is a recent graduate of the Arnolt Center for Journalism at Indiana University. This past year, she worked with InvestigateTV on its “Bridging The Great Health Divide” initiative.
The National Investigative Team intends to add an additional reporter and a photographer early next year to build upon InvestigateTV’s successful reporting efforts in 2021.
This year, the team uncovered a lack of government oversight and transparency in agricultural subsidies; discovered a glaring equity disparity in transportation safety that led to a recent change in federal laws; highlighted environmental protection issues; and created an in-depth series examining health care policies and outcomes in the Appalachia and Delta regions.
“The expansion of our National Investigative Unit reinforces our commitment to strong investigative journalism. We’re proud of the work of this unit that is having a real impact in the communities we serve,” said Gray Television Senior Vice President Sandy Breland in a statement.
The National Investigative Team and InvestigateTV produces stories for Gray’s 113 television stations and the InvestigateTV OTT App on Roku, Amazon Fire, and Apple TV. Early this year, the team debuted a weekly InvestigateTV show that airs on all Gray stations.
Through twelve weeks, the show is averaging about a viewership of 850,000 households per episode.
Many other TV station groups have similar setups that involve a team of journalists working collaboratively to produce investigative, consumer or fact checking content that’s typically distributed across all of the stations in the group.
This approach allows a station group to invest in a single team that can produce content for dozens or hundreds of stations, along with their associated digital properties. This can allow a station group to produce more extensive, wide reaching content than a single local station might be able to.
InvestigateTV launched in 2018 and provides innovative, original journalism from a dedicated investigative team and partners, including ProPublica, News21 at Arizona State University’s Cronkite School of Journalism, and NerdWallet. It is available on Roku, Amazon Fire, at InvestigateTV.com and across Gray’s broadcast and digital media properties.