Did you know Spotlight PA is a nonprofit? Learn more about our nonpartisan journalism »
Skip to main content
Main content

Your Source for Pennsylvania News & Investigations

Spotlight PA is an independent, nonpartisan, and nonprofit newsroom dedicated to high-quality investigative and public-service journalism about the Pennsylvania state government and urgent statewide issues. We were founded as a bold, collaborative answer to the rapid and significant decline of corporate-owned, for-profit media in our state, resulting in drastically reduced coverage of issues vital to Pennsylvanians.

We seek to return journalism in our state to its fundamental role as a check and balance on the powerful, especially politicians and policy makers, and a public resource to empower residents to take action and drive change. Our journalism is produced to serve the public interest — not profit motives. That’s why we don’t charge for access, and share our journalism with 100+ newsrooms in the state for republication at no cost.

Our Mission

The mission of Spotlight PA is to hold powerful public and private forces — especially governments, elected officials, businesses, and special interests — to account through urgent and compelling investigative and public-service journalism that drives change and strengthens our democracy, the state, and all who live here.

Learn more about who supports our work and how to join them

Journalism that Gets Results

At Spotlight PA, we believe the most important stories are ones that follow the money, reveal systemic failures of our state government, and raise awareness about critical needs in our communities. We measure our success across a broad spectrum of impact indicators.

  • Economy
    A Spotlight PA investigation into Pennsylvania’s pandemic mortgage relief program found that long delays and poor communication were leaving thousands in limbo, with their homes and utilities on the line. The story prompted the state to fire the third-party contractor that was running the program.
  • Justice System
    A Spotlight PA investigation into the state’s broken system for protecting incarcerated people with mental health needs included the creation of a first-of-its-kind database of cases involving competency hearings. The data has since been requested by researchers as valuable to understanding the extent of the problem.
  • Unemployment
    A Spotlight PA investigation revealed how the state Labor Department overcharged unemployed residents for years and never made the problem public, directly prompting state officials to admit the error and say they would return $19 million to Pennsylvanians.

Spotlight PA Team & Partners

Our History

Spotlight PA was founded in 2019 by The Lenfest Institute for Journalism and a coalition of newsrooms from across Pennsylvania to address a crisis in journalism: the ongoing and rapid decline of corporate-owned legacy news outlets, which is greatly diminishing access to trusted, contextual, and factual reporting in the state.

With support from foundations, individual members, and more, Spotlight PA — now an independent 501c3 organization — is uncovering stories that would otherwise go untold and cutting through partisanship and misinformation to deliver trusted, reliable journalism at no cost to all in Pennsylvania.

Since its inception, Spotlight PA has become a leading national model for independent, collaborative journalism that empowers residents and gets results. Our work has won numerous state and national awards and driven meaningful change and policy reforms in the state capital and beyond.