Jake Griffin

Assistant Managing Editor/Watchdog Reporting
  • Phone(847) 427-4602
  • Emailjgriffin@dailyherald.com
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Jake Griffin is the assistant managing editor for watchdog reporting at the Daily Herald. He writes a weekly column appearing Wednesdays on tax spending and government accountability. From 2007 to 2010 he was responsible for coverage of DuPage County government. Before that, he covered Naperville from 2004 to 2007. He came to the Daily Herald in 2000, serving as the West Chicago and Warrenville beat reporter until 2004.

Currently, he is responsible for producing in-depth projects and analysis of government spending and tax-dollar waste. He has worked on a number of projects, including the Daily Herald's award-winning coverage of the Northern Illinois University campus shootings and subsequent recovery efforts.

He chronicled the DuPage Water Commission's misspending of its $69 million reserve fund. Most recently, he completed a series detailing how hundreds of public pools in the state don't comply with federal safety regulations.

Griffin has appeared on ABC 7 Sunday morning broadcasts and WBBM NewsRadio 780, where he discusses stories he has written for the Daily Herald.

Growing up in northeastern Oregon, Griffin's first job as a child was delivering a regional newspaper every afternoon and a local newspaper every Tuesday morning. His family moved to St. Louis, Mo., when he was 14 and he enrolled in a high school magnet program for journalism before beginning a series of newsroom internships throughout suburban St. Louis. He attended college at Missouri Southern State University in Joplin, Mo., where he received a journalism scholarship.

He worked at the Joplin Globe throughout college, starting as a part-time sports writer, then as a part-time feature writer and finally covering "cops and courts" full time before moving to Chicago in 1999.

Throughout his career, he has covered presidential debates, national political conventions, the 1997 handover of Hong Kong to China and statehouse government. Griffin lives in Chicago with his wife and daughter.

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No bridges built in suburbs like one that collapsed

Mar 16 2018 | 5:42 pm - The technique used to build the pedestrian bridge that collapsed in Florida Thursday is not widely used in Illinois and both IDOT and tollway officials say they haven’t used the construction method locally.

Most suburban school districts increased cash reserves last year

Mar 16 2018 | 6:16 am - Most suburban school districts increased their cash reserves last year, including 24 districts where reserves grew 10 percent or more over just one year.

Some students counter-protested or stayed in class during school marches

Mar 14 2018 | 3:53 pm - Some suburban students are not participating in today’s school walkout for reasons ranging from philosophical differences to a desire to avoid possible disciplinary action.

Bill limiting state promotional spending moves forward

Mar 07 2018 | 2:22 pm - A bill that would prohibit use of state funds to pay for promotional booths or hospitality suites at conferences has been approved in committee and will be up for a vote by the Illinois House of Representatives in a few weeks.

Republicans signing on to bills to legalize recreational marijuana

Mar 02 2018 | 8:52 pm - Republicans sign on to bills that would legalize recreational marijuana use in the state, which could be helpful to override any potential veto by Gov. Bruce Rauner.

Are libraries closing the book on late fees?

Feb 28 2018 | 6:57 am - Across the suburbs, library fines have dropped by almost $695,138 a year since 2015, in part because some libraries have stopped charging for overdue items. How are libraries making up the funds?

Grasso returns improper campaign contributions

Feb 25 2018 | 5:08 pm - Republican candidate for attorney general Gary Grasso has returned some controversial campaign contributions, but kept money from a company run by brothers once convicted of defrauding the state.

Democrats direct ire at tax reform bill Roskam helped write

Feb 24 2018 | 9:11 pm - Sixth Congressional District Democratic candidates avoid sparring with each other, instead choosing to attack Republican incumbent Peter Roskam and the federal tax bill he helped author during a Saturday monring candidate forum at Harper College in...

Toni Preckwinkle, Bob Fioretti spar over pensions, pop tax, leadership

Feb 20 2018 | 12:11 am - Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle painted herself as a proven leader forced to make hard decisions when her hands were tied by bureaucracy and politics, but her opponent in the upcoming Democratic primary, Bob Fioretti, argued all she had...

Suburban taxpayers could wind up covering $76 million police pension shortfall

Feb 07 2018 | 10:29 am - Twenty-six suburban police pension funds lost money on their investments in 2016, often while budgeting for returns of 7 percent or more, a Daily Herald analysis shows. They’re among 65 suburban police pension funds that missed their...

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