The Jewish Federation invites our Healthcare Professionals to join us for a discussion about Tikkun Olam: Healing the World Through Health Reporting. The event will feature perspectives from three award-winning Jewish journalists whose work has influenced local and federal policy: Lisa Girion, an enterprise correspondent at Reuters (formerly at the Los Angeles Times); Michelle Levander, Editor and Founding Director of USC Annenberg’s Center for Health Journalism; and Joe Rubin, a documentary producer and investigative reporter.

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Complimentary parking is available in the visitor lot adjacent to the building, and there is also street parking in the area.



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Lisa Girion

Lisa Girion’s work on the Reuters’ series Shock Tactics, an investigation into Taser deaths, was honored in 2018 by the White House Correspondents’ Assn. with its Edgar A. Poe Award, as well as by the Society for Professional Journalists’ Sigma Delta Chi Award for Investigative Reporting. Her work over 16 years at the Los Angeles Times — including an exposé of systematic patient dumping by the nation’s biggest health insurers — prompted government investigations, new laws, and changes in corporate policies. Her stories resulted in the restoration of coverage for thousands of people, played a role in President Obama’s healthcare agenda, and was cited in the 2010 Affordable Care Act. Her investigation into the role of multinational oil companies in alleged human rights abuses took her to remote villages along a military-controlled gas pipeline in Myanmar, and she met with refugees in hiding for a story anthologized in 2014 in “Global Muckraking: 100 Years of Investigative Journalism from Around the World.”

Her last five years at the LA Times were spent investigating the nation’s opioid death epidemic. Girion and her colleagues were the first to report that drug overdoses had eclipsed traffic accidents as a cause of death in the U.S. — beating the CDC to the analysis of its own data. Then, in an unprecedented examination of nearly 4,000 deaths, she and her colleagues reported that the medications involved in drug overdoses were prescribed by physicians to decedents in nearly half of the cases. Finally, her opioid team revealed that Purdue Pharma contributed to the epidemic by knowingly exaggerating how long OxyContin lasts and by failing to turn in doctors and pharmacies its own information showed were fueling abuse. Those revelations have been cited in ongoing lawsuits by cities, counties, and states against drug makers.


Michelle Levander

Michelle Levander’s life has been enriched by her work as a reporter, editor and, currently, as a journalism educator.

In 2004, she became founding director of USC Annenberg's Center for Health Journalism. Before that, she worked in daily journalism in California at the San Jose Mercury News and in Asia for the Asian Wall Street Journal and Time Magazine Asia. She also spent a year in Mexico, studying and later writing about immigrants and the tug North as an Inter American Press Association Fellow at El Colegio de Mexico and El Colegio de Michoacan. She is a graduate of the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and UC Berkeley.

Learn more about the initiatives she has launched and now manages at the Center.


Joe Rubin

Joe Rubin is an award-winning producer and investigative journalist. Joe won an investigative Emmy in 2016 for his reporting on a chemical experiment involving the city of Sacramento's drinking water, which exposed the public to byproducts linked to cancer and low birth weights. Joe frequently delves into complex public policy from guns and mental illness (ABC10) to the seismic safety of nuclear power in California (Center for Investigative Reporting). Rubin has a long track record on the national and international front. Joe produced and reported numerous documentaries for PBS’s Frontline World, ABC’s Nightline, Al Jazeera, and PBS’s Expose. Rubin has also reported for numerous public radio programs including The World, Marketplace, and Morning Edition. Joe also loves to innovate. iWitness, a WEBBY winning web interview series Joe hosted for PBS's Frontline/World, was one of the first journalistic endeavors to use webcam as a storytelling device. Joe was the co-creator of the Pitch Room, an HBO pilot that pulled back the curtain on journalism.


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