BRUSSELS – The Journalismfund.eu General Assembly elected a new Chair during its meeting in Brussels on August 26, 2013. Brigitte Alfter replaces Paul Decroos.
The organisation was founded in 1998 as a non-profit in memory of Flemish TV journalist Pascal Decroos under the name Pascal Decroos Fund for Investigative Journalism. On January 22, 2013, the General Assembly decided to officially change the name to Journalismfund.eu.
Paul Decroos, Pascal’s father, had chaired the organisation for fifteen years, before deciding with the rest of the General Assembly that the time had come for the organisation – and its board – to take the next step and internationalise.
After Journalismfund.eu managing director Ides Debruyne had thanked Paul for fifteen years of trust and support, the General Assembly elected German-Danish journalist Brigitte Alfter as new Chair. Paul becomes Honorary Chair.
Brigitte Alfter has a lot of experience with European investigative journalism. She was a Brussels correspondent for Danish daily Information until 2008, when she was asked to start the European grant program together with Ides Debruyne. Alfter was responsible for the European applications and international contacts with the applicants and jury members. Additionally, she was one of the driving forces behind Farmsubsidy.org and Wobbing.eu and, until last year, manager of the Danish project Scoop that supports investigative journalists in the Balkans, Ukraine and Moldova.
She also has her own Watchdog blog on the EUobserver, is a member of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists ICIJ and of the Global Investigative Journalism Network volunteer committee. Alfter has won several prizes in the course of her career, such as the IRE Freedom of Information Award (2006) and, recently, the Leipzig Prize for the Freedom and Future of the Media (2013) together with Ides Debruyne for their work with Journalismfund.eu.
Alfter is honoured with the trust she is given to continue the organisation’s internationalisation and attests to working on networks between journalists. That means that the cross-border project will increase in importance, even while the organisation will also set up national projects mirroring the workings of the Flemish Pascal Decroos Fund project all over Europe.