Army Corps hired PR firm to improve its image

After the levees broke in New Orleans, the Army Corps of Engineers quietly hired a public relations firm called Outreach Process Partners (OPP).

OPP was hired under a 3-year contract to ostensibly improve the federal agency’s image.

This small firm was paid $1 million up front and, over the next three years, received another $3,613,998.00.

OPP boasted in its website that it reduced negative news stories for the corps. brought the nearly $5 million contract to the attention of its supporters in May 2009.

The eBlast got the attention of CBS National News and the Associated Press who both did national stories.

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The ten most poorly-reported stories in American journalism

One of the most poorly covered stories in American journalism history is Hurricane Katrina and the levee breaches.

This is according to W. Joseph Campbell in his book Getting it Wrong: Ten of the Greatest Misreported Stories in American Journalism.

Says Campbell, the news coverage of the storm, the levee breaches and the aftermath was flawed and exaggerated.

“The coverage made it seem as though the city were a haven for lurking criminals waiting for the opportune moment to inflict violence on others.”

As Campbell described in his book, the consequences of the poor unverified reporting caused distinct harm to “an already wounded population.”

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On Monday, April 6, 2020, the website attained the magic number – one million views!

Created on December 3, 2005, the site was originally intended as an educational tool to help the national population understand that the flooding of New Orleans in August 2005 is due to federal levee building mistakes on the part of the US Army Corps of Engineers.

The website is the go-to for all kinds of information about levee safety and flooding.

For example, after Hurricane Harvey, a levee board member from Fort Bend County Texas requested a high-resolution copy of’s levee county map.

“It was a great presentation of the levee system in the US”, he explained.

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