Nick Nehamas '07, investigative reporter with the Miami Herald, is a recipient of the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for explanatory reporting on the “Panama Papers,” an international investigation that exposed how crooks and millionaires use the secret world of offshore companies.
The prize was awarded to the Herald, its parent company McClatchy, and the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists for their dive into a massive cache of leaked documents that revealed a financial system of tax havens preferred by tax dodgers, corrupt politicians and drug dealers whose money often wound up in Miami real estate.
“It brought together journalists from so many different countries, speaking so many languages, to tell a story that would’ve been impossible for a single newsroom to tell,” Nehamas was quoted as saying after the announcement of his win.
Nehamas got his start in journalism at Lawrenceville – as a Third Former reporting for The Lawrence under the guidance of former Classics Master Ed Robbins H’68 ’69 ’71 ’11 – and went on to serve as opinion editor in the Fourth and Fifth Forms.
“He was just a fantastic advisor,” Nehamas said of Robbins. “[He] really wanted us to express ourselves and learn how to do journalism. He was concerned with fairness and was a steadying hand on the tiller, but never prevented us from doing what we wanted.”
Nehamas said reporting on a small community such as Lawrenceville was his introduction to journalism and what it means to serve a local community like south Florida. He also said collaborating with other students around the Harkness table provided invaluable experience for his reporting on the Panama Papers.
“Newsrooms are smaller and the world is bigger. Money moves across borders like they don’t exist and journalists have to learn to work together,” he explained. “As high school students we were encouraged to do the same with the Harkness table. It was a collaborative method of learning…I learned a lot about the value of working together.”
His advice for budding journalists? Start writing and learning about data analysis and social media.
Nehamas previously worked as a business reporter at the Miami Herald
covering real estate, the economy and jobs. Born and raised in New Jersey, he earned a bachelor’s degree from Harvard in 2011. He also graduated with a master's degree from the Stabile Center for Investigative Journalism at Columbia Journalism School.
“Journalism is what keeps people in power honest and what keeps communities informed,” Nehamas emphasized. “It’s a very important public service.” We'd love to share your story with other Lawrentians. E-mail us here with your news or activities and we'll be in touch.