Donald W. Reynolds National Center For Business Journalism

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Set up SEC-filing alerts for your companies

December 9, 2011

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An SEC filing by Career Education Corp. yielded this story for Erica Perez at California Watch.

During a check to confirm information on a Career Education Corp. story, Erica Perez of California Watch came across a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing showing a $5 million payout to its former CEO as part of a separation agreement. The CEO resigned before the company announced that its internal investigation had found the company inflated job-placement rates for its graduates, the story says. Erica writes:

“Yet (ex-CEO Gary E.) McCullough’s separation agreement indicates he was not terminated for cause and therefore was entitled to several years of bonus payments.”

Today’s Tip: Schedule regular SEC-filing checks via its online database, EDGAR.

Erica regularly checks filings on Friday mornings, she says. She also uses Google Alerts and analysts’ email reports to get SEC information on the for-profit education market that she covers, she says.

Reporters also can set up email alerts for company-specific SEC filings at If you’re new to EDGAR, check out this primer.

An interesting sidelight: Erica was a high school English teacher who was assigned to advise the school newspaper staff. She enjoyed it so much she got her master’s degree in journalism and became a reporter. She covers higher ed now. Here’s more on why and how Erica got into journalism:

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