The 2009 Pulitzer Prize Winners

Investigative Reporting

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For a distinguished example of investigative reporting by an individual or team, presented as a single article or series, in print or online or both, Ten thousand dollars ($10,000).

Awarded to David Barstow of The New York Times for his tenacious reporting that revealed how some retired generals, working as radio and television analysts, had been co-opted by the Pentagon to make its case for the war in Iraq, and how many of them also had undisclosed ties to companies that benefited from policies they defended.


David Barstow

Lee C. Bollinger, President of Columbia University (left), presents the Investigative Reporting prize to David Barstow of The New York Times.


Also nominated as finalists in this category were: Paul Pringle of the Los Angeles Times for his meticulously researched stories that, in the face of threats, exposed financial abuses by the head of California’s largest union, leading to investigations, the leader’s departure from office and repayment of misappropriated funds; and Susanne Rust and Meg Kissinger of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel for their powerful revelations that the government was failing to protect the public from dangerous chemicals in everyday products, such as some “microwave-safe” containers, stirring action by Congress and federal agencies.