Sensitive documents obtained by The Maroon last summer and a new lawsuit reveal a strained relationship between the University of Chicago and the Pearson family, calling the future of the Pearson Institute, which was supposed to change the world, into question.

Notes: I broke this story, catching Chicago media outlets by surprise, possibly because the lawsuit was filed in a district court in Oklahoma—not in Illinois. The article was cited on Page A2 of The Wall Street Journal. The Chicago Sun-Times and the Chicago Tribune ran their own reporting on the story on their respective front pages.

I was later subpoenaed by the Pearson family for documents used to produce this article; the subpoena made national headlines and was even covered in the national POLITICO Playbook.

The article is the most-read Maroon article in the past two years. The Illinois Collegiate Press Association said that this was 2018’s best news story in Illinois at the university level. The article won in the large school (4,000+ students) non-dailies category.