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The Challenge Is in the Moment: The Time Is Always Now

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The primary objectives of the Innocence Project's 2023 annual report, "The Challenge Is in the Moment: The Time Is Always Now," were to: 

  1. Capture our wide range of victories, along with their impact, from FY23 (including our exonerations, policy wins, and other major initiatives).
  2. Clearly articulate our mission in freeing the innocent, transforming criminal legal systems, and advancing the innocence movement.
  3. Acknowledge the importance of our donors and supporters in driving our work and success. 
  4. Strengthen and grow our supporter base.
  5. Inspire readers to take action by donating or by learning more about our work. 


We set out to share our FY23 wins in a way that would move our audience to continue advancing our work. We knew we needed to craft a compelling narrative, so we framed our achievements around the three main pillars of our organization's work: "Restoring Freedom," "Transforming Systems," and "Advancing the Movement."

Under "Restoring Freedom," we highlight our success stories in exonerations and the post-release support we provided to our clients. In "Transforming Systems," we delve into our strategic litigation work and policy reforms aimed at addressing, preventing, and exposing wrongful convictions. Lastly, "Advancing the Movement" focuses on the many approaches we took to amplify the innocence movement.

In presenting these three programmatic sections, we put the spotlight on our incredible clients. We used powerful photos and videos to connect our work to their stories and experiences. We also wanted to highlight their resilience by including clips of their happiest moments post-exoneration. We incorporated several direct-to-camera interviews (John Galvan, Herman Williams, and Ian Schweitzer) to give our exonerees space to connect with our audience on a personal level. And we paid tribute to our late board member and exoneree Calvin Johnson with a vibrant collage and emotional epitaph. 

Recognizing that not all of our supporters may be familiar with the intricacies of our work, we made a deliberate effort to use clear and accessible language. Using our brand colors, we also integrated a number of interactive web elements — including pop-up boxes, a video and image gallery, a rotating carousel, flip cards, hyperlinks and more — to create an engaging user experience. 

Finally, to motivate our supporters to donate, we placed "donate" bars throughout the report; added a "Ways to Give" section that encourages our audience to explore other paths of giving; and included a donor profile as a way of honoring some of our most generous and inspiring donors. 


The annual report was hugely successful in driving online donations last winter. After it was launched in November, it contributed to the nearly $400,000 in one-time revenue we received through our digital channels.

Compared to previous reports, we also saw an uptick in engagement, with the average user spending nearly four minutes on the most recent report (almost a full minute longer than they had spent on other reports).  Furthermore, we received positive feedback from our supporters across social media platforms where the report had been shared, including LinkedIn and Instagram. 



Entrant Company / Organization Name

Innocence Project


Entry Credits