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“Broken Promise”

Excellence in Multimedia Journalism

San Francisco Chronicle, 2023


The San Francisco Chronicle used a powerful combination of stunning still photography, impactful video and audio, meticulous data reporting and concise and beautifully written narrative prose to expose San Francisco’s failure to meaningfully deal with the community’s epidemic of fentanyl addiction, homelessness and death on its streets.  

The Chronicle made it a top priority to cover the humanitarian crisis, engaging a robust team of its investigative reporters, columnists and audio and visual journalists.  

The numbers the Chronicle reported are stunning. During 2022 there were 620 overdose deaths in San Francisco and nearly 2,000 over the past three years. The number of overdose deaths in the city during the period eclipsed those caused by COVID-19, murders and traffic accidents combined. The project’s compelling opening video employed a drone shot that overlayed the exact location of overdose deaths in the city’s most affected neighborhood.  

“Broken Promises” is a ground-breaking project that tells the story through the experiences of those who are suffering from addiction, their loved ones and advocates. Those interviews are supported by interactive infographics, animated diagrams, data visualizations, podcasts, audio interviews and data reporting. The result is a body of work that is rich in imagery, supported by incontrovertible data and artfully woven together through immersive storytelling.