Clare Rewcastle Brown is an investigative journalist born in the former British Crown Colony of Sarawak (now part of Malaysia) to British parents. She attended a local primary school, moved to the United Kingdom when she was eight, attended private boarding school and subsequently obtained her masters degree in international relations from the London School of Economics. She became a journalist, joining the BBC World Service in 1983.
In 2010, she founded Sarawak Report, a blog seeking to highlight the destruction of Sarawak’s tropical rainforests for profit and alleged corruption at the highest levels of the state government.
Her relentless pursuit of wrongdoings by Malaysia’s political elite that resulted in the widespread destruction of the Borneo rainforests and the impacts on civil and indigenous rights as well as on the environment eventually led her to prominence when she was the first journalist to expose the 1MDB Development Fund scandal.
Her story rocked the global financial community; helped put the off-shore finance industry on the run; embarrassed some famous figures in Hollywood, Las Vegas and New York, and contributed to the unprecedented defeat at the polls of Malaysia’s sole ruling party of 61 years.
Fortune Magazine named her one of the World’s 50 Most Influential Figures in 2016; she was named one of Britain’s Women of the Year 2016. In 2013 she received the International Press Institute’s Pioneer of Media Freedom Award; in 2014 she received Queensland University’s Communication for Social Change Award and in 2018 the Guardian Award by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners.