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Our Champions

Leaders In Action logo

Leaders in Action are individual donors who are champions of Spotlight PA's mission at the highest level, contributing $1,000 or more annually to our newsroom. Leaders in Action help us to expand Spotlight PA's urgent investigative reporting, increase accessibility to quality, fact-based information for all Pennsylvanians, and advance our commitment to protecting democracy. Leaders in Action not only sustain—but directly advance—unique and vital reporting that drives change.

Have questions about joining Leaders in Action? Please contact Michelle Mertz at michelle@spotlightpa.org. We are so grateful for your consideration!

Spotlight PA's volunteer chairs

  • Photo of Jennifer Bertetto

    Jennifer Bertetto

    Pittsburgh Community Campaign Chair

    Jennifer Bertetto is the President and CEO of Trib Total Media and 535media in Pittsburgh. She is also the chairwoman of the Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association. Under her leadership, Trib Total Media has grown its audience to nearly 4 million monthly readers. It has been named Best Overall Newspaper by the Society of Professional Journalists for four of the last five years. In 2022, Jennifer was named “Publisher of the Year” by Editor and Publisher.

    Why I support Spotlight PA: “I support Spotlight PA because I believe it is vital to our democracy that we hold government officials accountable and because an informed citizenry leads to higher voter turnout and a more civically engaged society.”

  • Photo of David M Erdman

    David M Erdman

    Lehigh Valley Community Campaign Chair

    From reporter to editor-in-chief, David M. Erdman has worked more than 35 years in media before retiring in 2016 when he began serving as a media and communications instructor and volunteer for Spotlight PA and other efforts to support journalism in Pennsylvania.

    For his three decades of commitment to journalism, service to the community, and work in support of open government, the Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association recognized Erdman with the 2016 Ben Franklin Award for Excellence.

    After serving in many roles at The Morning Call, Allentown, Pa., including city editor and managing editor, Erdman became editor-in-chief overseeing all aspects of The Morning Call, the largest media company in the third most populated region of Pennsylvania with a portfolio of digital and print products reaching more than 70 percent of the market. Erdman is a past president of the Pennsylvania Society of News Editors and currently serves as a trustee for the Pennsylvania News Media Foundation.

    Why I support Spotlight PA: “Investigative reporting is more than ‘good content’. It’s an element essential to the functioning of our democracy, and with local media under pressure by merges, acquisitions, and precipitous declines in audience and revenue, SpotlightPA is our best hope of keeping the Fourth Estate thriving in Pennsylvania.”

  • Photo of Katie O’Toole

    Katie O’Toole

    State College Community Campaign Chair

    Katie O’Toole is an Associate Teaching Professor in Penn State’s Donald P. Bellisario College of

    Communications where she earned her PhD in Mass Communications in 2010. Previously, she worked for 24 years at Penn State Public Broadcasting primarily as the writer and host of a nationally-distributed children’s current events series. Katie lives in Lemont with her husband Gary Gray.

    Why I support Spotlight PA: “I support Spotlight PA because I have seen what happens in rural counties where stories go untold. As voters, we’re less informed about the candidates who want to govern our towns and villages. As consumers, we’re often not aware of the decisions made by corporations and lawmakers that affect our wallets. As community members, we hear fewer stories about the triumphs and struggles of our neighbors—the kinds of stories that once challenged us to do better as a society or that gave us reason for communal celebrations. Spotlight PA’s State College Bureau is filling the gap left by the demise of small-town newspapers. Its journalists tell local stories and report on the meetings, events, issues, and institutions that form the foundation of our shared civic life.”

Our Current Leaders


    • Sharon Albrecht
    • Catherine and Kevin Alloway
    • Christopher Armstrong


    • Carol Baker
    • Diana and Thomas Beausang
    • Olivia Benson
    • Georgia Berner
    • R Thomas and Paulette Berner
    • Michael and Randi Berry
    • Jennifer Bertetto
    • David Boardman
    • Merrill and Nancy Brenner
    • Lee Butz


    • Richard Carroll
    • Audry and Andy Carter
    • Marguerite Chandler and Richmond Shreve


    • John and Janet Dillon
    • Hallie and Josh Donner
    • Alfred Douglass


    • Ebe Emmons
    • Mary Evans
    • Thomas Eveslage


    • George Fernandez
    • Ronald Filippelli
    • Lauri Fink
    • Mary and Kenneth France


    • Janet Gross


    • Debra Hager
    • Paul Hallacher
    • Stacey Hanrahan
    • Karen Harvey
    • Kelly Heisey
    • Ardith Hilliard
    • Mark Hirschman
    • Ruth and Bruce Hollender
    • Robert and Sharon Holloway
    • Ray and Donna Holton
    • Mary and Howard Hurtig
    • Sharon and Jeff Hyde


    • Christine Jacobs


    • Lisa Kabnick
    • Richard and Sally Kalin
    • Roberta Kangilaski
    • Laura and Peter Kemper
    • Roger and Karen Klotz
    • Carole Koch
    • Howard Kolus
    • Beryl Kuhr and Patrick Bair


    • Brendan Lake
    • Xia Li and Jun Huangpu
    • Julie Linowes and David Roth
    • Dr. Robert Locke


    • Annie and William Madonia
    • Joseph Manning
    • Richard Mansberger
    • Charles and Ruth Marcon
    • David Martens
    • Martina Martin
    • Richard and Susan Master
    • Jane and Mark Mendlow
    • Joan Miller Moran
    • Gaylon Morris
    • James and Susan Morris


    • John Nichols


    • Marty O'Brien and Lisa Gordon
    • Katie O'Toole and Gary Gray
    • Bill Oliver
    • David Ottaway


    • Sheldon Parker
    • Lance Parry
    • Kathleen Pavelko
    • Sue and Jack Peck
    • James Pflumm
    • Timothy Potts and Lu Conser
    • Mary Prunty


    • Donna Queeney and Nicholas Kerlin


    • Anthony Reed
    • Rosalind Remer and James Green
    • Guinevere Ritter


    • Jim and Kathi Schaedler
    • Gary Schell
    • Gail Scott
    • Nicholas Selch
    • Matthew Seyler
    • Mark Sheppard
    • Joshua Singer
    • Susan and Ron Smith
    • Jane Sprecher
    • Frederick Steinberg and Jo DeBolt
    • E. Marvin Stouffer
    • Stephanie Szakal


    • Anthony and Susan Tarantino
    • Bruce Toll
    • Daniel and Linda Trevino


    • Robert and Dianne Vickery


    • Carol Weisman
    • Millicent West
    • Connie and Sankey Williams
    • Deborah Williams
    • Richard Williams
    • Allan Willinger and Jo Schlesinger


    • Cliff Zukin and Debbie Walsh


    Spotlight PA is a trustworthy news source in this era of misinformation and disinformation.

    • Pennsylvanians deserve better than having to rely on shrinking, vanishing, and increasingly biased media and unverified social media postings. Spotlight PA fills this critical need for trusted investigations and reporting. We are proud to support this essential organization that stays focused on its mission with unquestionable integrity, is run efficiently and effectively, and achieves results that bring positive changes for Pennsylvanians.

      Merrill and Nancy Brenner, Macungie, PA, Leaders in Action
    • I support Spotlight PA because I believe it is important to have independent investigative journalists covering state and local government. Spotlight needs public support so that it can remain independent.

      Sharon Hyde, State College, PA, Leader in Action
    • We support Spotlight because we believe being informed citizens is essential for a democracy. Spotlight provides essential in-depth articles that my local papers no longer can supply independently.

      Roger and Karen Klotz, Latrobe, PA, Leaders in Action
    • All Pennsylvanians interested in state government issues are very well served by Spotlight PA reporting teams. Their in-depth and timely reporting informs readers truthfully about statewide issues affecting daily life. Spotlight PA is a trustworthy news source in this era of misinformation and disinformation.

      David Martens, York Dispatch, Leader in Action
    • In an era where fraud and dishonesty among public officials (and their supporters) have become more frequent and blatant, it is critical to have a crusading press focused on exposing wrongdoing. This is especially true in Pennsylvania where regulations are lax or poorly enforced. The expertise and resources of Spotlight PA are essential to good government in this state.

      Betsey Useem, Merion Station, PA, Leader in Action
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