I’m Amy Pyle, the editor in chief at Reveal from The Center for Investigative Reporting.

This is a dream-come-true job for me, after a couple of decades at newspapers.

Why? Because we have one very focused goal: impact. You can help us reach that goal.

People ask me all the time whether it’s depressing to run an all-investigative newsroom, where we are constantly uncovering some pretty gnarly problems. Some people call that negative news. But I see it differently: What could be more positive than exposing problems and who’s responsible, creating a roadmap for change?

That’s exactly what we do out of our headquarters in the San Francisco Bay Area. Our reporters are charged with unearthing unique, important national issues. Then, once they find them, we give them the time and resources to thoroughly investigate.

Deciding which stories to greenlight is one of my biggest challenges. I find myself saying no–a lot! To help us choose, the editing team developed a checklist to ensure maximum impact from our work. Here are a few examples of what we ask ourselves about every story idea:

  • IMPORTANT: Will this story expose a hidden problem or tell our audience something new? Will it make a difference?
  • INTERESTING: Why should someone read or listen to it? Is it timely, newsy, in the zeitgeist?
  • FOCUS: Who is being harmed and how? Who is responsible and can we prove it?
  • APPROACH: How will we humanize it? Who are some primary characters: a whistleblower, a victim, a bad guy?

In the coming weeks, I’ll write again to tell you about some of the impact we have had this year. But until then, give some thought to the value you place on this kind of reporting and on strong journalism in general. We believe in offering you our work for free, but it’s not free to produce.

Please consider joining our new membership program to show your support for our mission to make a difference.

Also, feel free to get in touch with feedback about our work – we are always looking to learn from you, too.

Thank you,

Amy Pyle
Editor in Chief

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Amy Pyle is editor in chief at Reveal from The Center for Investigative Reporting, guiding a team of editors, reporters and producers who produce unique in-depth national stories for the web, radio and video. Her primary goals are exposing wrongdoing and holding those responsible accountable, and increasing diversity in the ranks of investigative reporters. In the past year, CIR has established a fellowship program for aspiring investigative journalists of color and another for women filmmakers. Amy has worked at CIR since 2012, previously serving as a senior editor and managing editor. Rehab Racket, a collaboration with CNN that she managed on fraud in government-funded drug and alcohol rehabilitation, won the top broadcast award from Investigative Reporters and Editors. The Reveal radio version of an investigation she oversaw on an epidemic of opiate prescriptions at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs won a George Foster Peabody Award. Previously, as assistant managing editor for investigations at The Sacramento Bee, she managed “Chief's Disease,” a story about pension spiking at the California Highway Patrol, which won George Polk Award. Amy worked as a reporter and editor at the Los Angeles Times for more than a decade where, as assistant city editor, she directed coverage from the parking lot of the Times’ quake-damaged San Fernando Valley office in the early morning hours after the 1994 Northridge earthquake. That work earned the 1995 Pulitzer Prize for spot news reporting. Amy has a bachelor’s degree in French from Mills College and a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University.