Trevor Aaronson returns to FCIR as Executive Director

Trevor Aaronson has been named executive director of the Florida Center for Investigative Reporting effective Oct. 1.

Aaronson will be responsible for FCIR’s day-to-day operations, especially for growing the nonprofit organization’s journalism and revenue. This newly created position gives Aaronson an ex-officio seat on the board of directors.

He will team up with Tristram Korten, who will continue as FCIR’s editor, a position he’s held since January. Korten will focus on expanding FCIR’s original investigative reporting and special events.

FCIR is based at the University of Miami in Coral Gables and partners with news media throughout the state.

Aaronson co-founded FCIR in 2010 with Mc Nelly Torres, now an investigative producer with NBC6 in South Florida. He rejoins Florida’s only statewide, bilingual news site devoted to public service reporting after helping to launch the U.S. investigative unit for Al Jazeera Media Network in Washington, D.C.

At Al Jazeera, he produced a one-hour documentary about FBI counterterrorism informants and contributed reporting to stories about California political corruption and security failures at U.S. embassies worldwide

“I’m returning to FCIR because I believe more than ever that we can grow the organization into a sustainable force in Florida journalism and beyond,” Aaronson said. “I’m grateful to FCIR’s board for inviting me to return, and to FCIR’s funders and news partners for supporting me as well. Among my initial goals is to expand FCIR’s funding base, from foundations and news partners to individual contributors.”

A Florida native, Aaronson ran FCIR through July 2013 as associate director. Under his leadership, the investigative nonprofit won more three dozen state and regional awards and collaborated with news organizations throughout Florida and the nation. Aaronson also led FCIR’s earned revenue programs providing data journalism services to Florida news organizations, including the Miami Herald, NBC6 in South Florida, and Florida’s NPR stations.

“We’re ecstatic to welcome Trevor back. He helped create FCIR, and the board believes he and Tris are a formidable team as journalists and entrepreneurs to grow FCIR with the goal of earning enough revenue to be sustainable,” said Sharon Rosenhause, FCIR’s board president.

Aaronson’s own reporting has won many honors, including the Molly National Journalism Prize and the international Data Journalism Award. He was also a two-time finalist for the Livingston Awards for Young Journalists, in 2006 and 2012. 

Aaronson is the author of a 2013 book The Terror Factory: Inside the FBI’s Manufactured War on Terrorism, about the FBI’s use of informants and counterterrorism sting operations. The updated and expanded paperback edition was released this month.

Aaronson has been an investigative reporting fellow at the University of California-Berkeley and an investigative reporter at The Commercial Appeal in Memphis, Miami New Times and New Times Broward-Palm Beach.

He can be reached by email at aaronson@fcir.org.