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Editor's Notes

From the archives 2021

Spotlight PA wins two national investigative journalism awards

by Christopher Baxter |

Spotlight PA has received two national awards recognizing excellence in investigative journalism.

Spotlight PA is an independent, nonpartisan newsroom powered by The Philadelphia Inquirer in partnership with PennLive/The Patriot-News, TribLIVE/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, and WITF Public Media. Sign up for our free newsletters.

Spotlight PA — a nonpartisan, reader-funded newsroom dedicated to covering Pennsylvania state government and urgent statewide issues — has been awarded two national investigative journalism prizes for its work on the Mariner East pipeline system and the state’s poor oversight of addiction treatment facilities.

“At Risk, In the Dark,” an investigation into how secrecy and a patchwork of emergency plans around the pipelines have left many communities in the dark about what to do in case of an accident, was awarded the Al Neuharth Innovation in Investigative Journalism Award by the Online News Association.

“Fundamental Flaws,” an investigation into Pennsylvania’s flawed oversight of addiction treatment facilities produced in partnership with KHN, was honored with the Best Investigative Journalism Prize by the Institute for Nonprofit News, which recognizes excellence by independent and nonprofit newsrooms.

In both competitions, Spotlight PA competed against newsrooms of similar size from across the United States. The awards recognize Spotlight PA’s commitment to producing high-quality investigative journalism that gets results.

Spotlight PA, the largest statewide news organization in Pennsylvania, was founded in 2019 to revitalize accountability and investigative journalism across Pennsylvania. Spotlight PA provides all of its journalism at no cost through a network of 77 newsroom partners, ensuring communities in all corners of the state have access to the information they need to hold their elected officials to account and make informed decisions at the polls.

Spotlight PA’s investigative reporting relies on the support of our readers, with every dollar donated going straight back into our 100% essential journalism. Help power our next investigation and make a tax-deductible contribution now at

Christopher Baxter is the executive director and editor in chief of Spotlight PA. Spotlight PA is funded by foundations and readers like you who are committed to accountability journalism that gets results.

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