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‘Journalists are not the enemy’: Investigative reporter Julie K. Brown named to TIME 100 list

The 2019 Fourth Estate Award Gala Dinner honoring Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Amanda Bennett was held at at the National Press Club in Washington, DC. on October 17, 2019. Miami Herald investigative reporter Julie K. Brown, center, listens to the speeches from the head table. (Photo by Melissa Lyttle)

TIME has named investigative journalist Julie K. Brown one of its 100 Most Influential People of 2020, the magazine announced today. 

Brown — whose “explosive reporting” on the late Jeffrey Epstein prompted a legal re-examination of the financier’s predatory behavior — was also the 2019 recipient of the Journalism Institute’s Neil and Susan Sheehan Award for investigative journalism.  

“Some stories are never really finished. Sometimes it’s worth returning to them, years later, looking at them as if they were cold cases and taking them apart,” Brown said during her acceptance speech at the Fourth Estate Gala honoring excellence in journalism. “This series of stories showed the world that journalists are not the enemy. Our job, which has never wavered, is to fight against the powerful, to bring truth to light in spite of the forces who want to hide those truths.” 

We called Brown this morning to congratulate her and hear her reaction to the TIME 100.

Brown: It’s been pretty overwhelming. It’s emotional, you know, this is a tough career. These kinds of things make you think back on your life and on your career and, you know, it’s a little emotional because I’ve had so many ups and downs. … 

Journalists — at least print journalists I should say — don’t really like to be the hero in the story. So on one hand, it’s a wonderful honor. But on the other hand, it’s kind of frightening to think that you’re in the spotlight and you’re in the story so to speak. …

As someone who writes behind a computer and wants to really give voice to people who don’t have voices, I feel a little uncomfortable being in the spotlight, to be honest with you.

Can you share any updates on your upcoming book on Jeffrey Epstein?

Brown: Well, it’s in the editing process right now. And it’ll probably be out sometime early next year. That’s probably the best ETA I can give you right now.

Watch Brown’s remarks from the 2019 Fourth Estate Gala, where she discusses her reporting on Epstein and the importance of investigative journalism. 

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Edward Alexander Ayans.
Edward Alexander Ayans.
3 years ago

As to the likings of Mrs Julie K. Brown. She is a fearless, and devoted and a mother of two An investigative reporter she undauntedly and masterfully goes straight for the jugular with a sharp feather pen, and then some, but not in the sense of being ambitious. Doing the right thing is something seemingly on autopilot for her, but in fact this woman is so dedicated with a wielding flaming pen and lightning instinctual and farsighted dignity with compassion and a fine tuned decision making one woman army for the dutiful service for the greater good.. Shining through her… Read more »