#MediaMonday – Lisa Halverstadt
Today’s #MediaMonday comes to us from Lisa Halverstadt, senior investigative reporter for Voice of San Diego, the first digital, nonprofit news organization in the country to serve a local community. She’s also president of the San Diego Pro Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, which was recently named SPJ’s large chapter of the year. She’s been in San Diego for a decade after a four-year stint at the Arizona Republic.
Lisa, time to share:
Our mission at the Voice of San Diego is to give readers the information they need to make important decisions. That means explaining complicated government and policy things, and uncovering things some folks would prefer San Diegans didn’t know.
I cover local governments and focus my investigative reporting on our region’s foremost challenges including our homelessness and behavioral health crises and costly city real estate debacles.
I grew up in Cincinnati and graduated from Bowling Green State University in Ohio. While I was in college, I served as editor in chief of our student newspaper, The BG News and helped revive the university’s SPJ chapter. I later had internships with The Community Press in Cincinnati, The Columbus Dispatch and The Arizona Republic. I accepted a job offer at The Republic after a summer Pulliam Fellowship.
Journalism has always been a calling for me. As a child, I loved researching, writing and figuring things out. In middle school, a teacher encouraged me to work for the student paper. By high school, I knew I’d be working as a journalist and by my sophomore year in college, I was convinced I belonged on the news beat.
I’ve covered a wide variety of topics over the past decade at Voice of San Diego. I’m best known for high-impact watchdog coverage of local governments’ response to our homelessness crisis. The past few years, I’ve also written extensively about a city of San Diego real estate acquisition that has spawned multiple scandals, including the revelation that a now ex-city landlord paid a city adviser publicly known as a volunteer millions for his work on two city leases (and told several city officials he wanted to be paid).
During my four years at The Arizona Republic, I covered public safety on both sides of the Valley. While on the Glendale public safety beat, I covered several stories that made national headlines including a landfill search for a missing 5-year-old’s remains and a case of mixed-up identities after a fatal car crash. I also wrote about the troubled search for a new owner for the Arizona Coyotes and how the situation impacted the city of Glendale’s finances.
When I’m not working, I enjoy spending time with friends, reading, listening to podcasts, weekend walks, singing along with the music and eating delicious food.
Favorite food: Soul food including fried chicken, collard greens and cornbread. I miss Lo-Lo’s Chicken & Waffles!
Favorite music: I’ve got eclectic taste – oldies classics, 2000s-era pop music, classic rock, 1990s country, random rap songs, anything by Whitney Houston…I could go on and on.