These are in-depth projects ranging from magazine stories to investigative reporting to essays.

Can $1 billion from an Indian conglomerate bring back American steel?

March 2019

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

JSW Steel, an Indian company, pledged hundreds of billions of dollars to restart a steel furnace in Ohio that had been mothballed a decade earlier. The venture to revive the former Wheeling-Pittsburg plant in Mingo Junction is the boldest — and strangest — experiment yet amid President Trump's pledge to "bring back" the American steel industry.

**FIRST PLACE in BUSINESS STORY category

2020 Keystone Press Awards

Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association

Photo credit: Stephanie Strasburg

As Little Blue Run is covered up, looming contamination beneath the surface

September 2018

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

The closure of the largest coal ash impoundment in the country, sprawling 1,000 acres in Pennsylvania-West Virginia border, is complicated. As crews spend the next 10 years capping the surface, my investigation broke ground that there are more than 100 monitoring pointed that have been deemed contaminated by a plume of coal waste material spreading underground—and no one can guarantee there won't be more pollution. 

Photo credit: Andrew Rush

Photo credit: Daniel Moore

Buying into Pakistan, stepping warily into the trade winds

April 2018

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Pakistan, viewed through a U.S. lens, is an enigma. It is considered an unpredictable friend in the best of times and a harborer of terrorism in the worst of them. A 10-day trip sponsored by the U.S. State Department sought to dispel myths and promote better ties with the South Asian country of 208 million people.

Photo credit: Rebecca Droke/Post-Gazette

Power Struggle: Herman's last stand

July 2017

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

After a dozen years leading the workers union at Pennsylvania's largest coal-fired power plant, Herman Marshman found himself in a fight not just with the company but with union members who didn't want to lose more than they already had. 

Photo credit: Steve Mellon/Post-Gazette

The Night Shift: At 4 a.m., a struggle to keep going

May 2017

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

After the sun goes down, these people are on the clock keeping the lights on, stocking the shelves, and cleaning offices and hospitals. They are a peculiar subset of the American workforce. Over a few months, I got an inside look at the nightly struggles and triumphs of people who do critical, often mundane night shifts under the cloak of darkness. 

**FIRST PLACE in FEATURE STORY category

2018 Keystone Press Awards

Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association

Photo credit: Michael Henninger/Post-Gazette

World Power: Echoes of Pittsburgh's past, exploring life in India's Steel City

October 2016

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Jamshedpur, quite possibly the largest and most enduring company-owned town in the world, is the birthplace of Indian industry. In the oppressive humidity and downpours of monsoon season, it shows uncanny parallels to Pittsburgh. 

Part two of a reporting project funded by the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting

Photo credit: Michael Henninger/Post-Gazette

World Power: From Pittsburgh to India, the race to reinvent the electric grid

October 2016

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette/Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting

How can the world bring a basic amenity of modern life — electricity — to 1.3 billion more people while also keeping pledges to fight climate change? A growing number of companies and researchers are racing to ensure new power doesn’t mean new pollution. 

Part one of a reporting project funded by the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting.

Photo credit: Daniel Moore

Turning back the clock in Cuyahoga Valley National Park

August 2016

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Where a river caught fire 50 years ago, Cuyahoga Valley is a pastoral patch of wilderness abutting Northeastern Ohio’s urban sprawl. Part of a project of the Post-Gazette commemorating the National Park Service's 100 year anniversary. Visited farms in Northeastern Ohio and took my own photos.

Photo credit: Michael Henninger/Post-Gazette

The boom and bust of Pennsylvania's coal towns

March 2016

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

The state of hundreds of company-built towns in the Pittsburgh area offers a glimpse at the existential struggle ahead for areas dependent on the coal industry.

**FIRST PLACE in "News Feature Story" category

2017 Keystone Press Awards

Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association

Photo credit: Bill Wade/Post-Gazette

On the right track? Hurried railroad inspections behind crude oil derailments

May 2015

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

An investigation into the causes of the most frequent and damaging train derailments in Pennsylvania, and what can be done to fix them. 

Photo credit: Jacob Byk/Dateline Baltics

How the West has won

May 2014

Dateline Baltics — Kent State University

An essay on how young Estonians feel toward the Western culture and the complicated identity crisis created by shifting borders. Reported from the Estonia's border with Russia during the Russian annexation of Crimea in March 2014. Published online as part of Dateline Baltics, the project of the International Storytelling course at Kent State University. 

Photo credit: Mary Shinn/News21

Post-9/11 veterans wait longer for benefits, VA encourages workers to tackle easier claims first

February – August 2013

News21/The Washington Post

Seven-month investigation at Arizona State’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism in Phoenix revealed the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs encouraged their claims processors to focus on disability claims that were easier, thus contributing to the highly scrutinized backlog of claims and increasing wait times for veterans. Published in print in The Washington Post Aug. 25.

Photo credit: Jacob Byk/The Burr

Forgotten but not gone: unearthing secrets buried in Memphis

April 2013

The Burr Magazine

Each spring, a dozen or so Kent State University students spend their week off traveling to Memphis to help restore an historic African American cemetery. Slowly hacking away at the brush, unearthing tombstones, sleeping on the floor of a church, they uncover a painful past and help the city understand its present. 

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