UW News

January 14, 2004

Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma gains five-year, $5 million funding

News and Information

The Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma, a Seattle-based international resource on news media coverage of violence, has received five years of continued support from the Dart Foundation, with grants that will total more than $5 million.

The Center at the University of Washington will receive its primary support from the Michigan-based Dart Foundation through 2008, Roger Simpson, Dart Center executive director, announced. The Foundation provided the funding to create the Center in 1999 and has been its primary funder since.

“In four years, the Dart Center has earned a clear national identity as the authoritative resource for journalists and news organizations about coverage of violence,” Simpson said. “This generous funding from the Dart Foundation follows increasing evidence of the industry’s recognition of the importance of our work.”

Simpson said the foundation’s grants will enable the Center to increase service to the news media and journalism schools, work toward more effective coverage of violence, and do more to raise awareness of the emotional challenges facing both survivors of violence and the journalists who report on them.

The Center also:

  • Honors exemplary newspaper reporting on victims of violence with the annual $10,000 Dart Award.
  • Provides annual fellowships for mid-career journalists. More than 30 Dart Center Ochberg Fellows have studied ways to report effectively about violence and its victims.
  • Trains journalists and journalism educators about reporting on violence.

In addition to its headquarters in Seattle, the Center maintains an East Coast field office and a European Center in London, works actively in Australia and has served as a resource for journalists in the Balkans region, Rwanda, Guatemala and South Africa.

Simpson, a member of the UW Communication Department faculty, was named director when the Center opened and will continue in that position through 2008. An executive committee of journalists, educators and behavioral experts shapes policy for the Center.

After the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, the Dart Foundation provided a special grant to enable the Dart Center to maintain an office in New York City for more than six months expressly to meet with and learn from the experiences of journalists.

The Center’s website, www.dartcenter.org, reports on violence coverage worldwide, including new research findings, and provides features on journalists who have covered traumatic events.


For additional information, contact:
Executive Director Roger Simpson, 206-543-0405 (Seattle)

Dart Center Administrator Margaret Spratt, 206-616-3223 (Seattle)

Dart Foundation Vice President James Lammers, 517-244-2329 (Mason, MI)

Dart Center Field Director (East Coast) Bruce Shapiro, 203-787-4816 (New Haven, Connecticut)

Dart Center Executive Committee Chair Emeritus Frank Ochberg, M.D., 517-349-6333 (Lansing, MI)

Dart Center Executive Committee President Joe Hight, managing editor of The Oklahoman, 800-375-6397, ext. 3913 (Oklahoma City).