Reporting Team

NJ Spotlight

Monsy Alvarado

Social Justice Writer

Monsy Alvarado has been a reporter for more than 20 years, covering local government as well as Latino issues, immigration and diverse communities. Before joining NJ Spotlight News, she was the immigration reporter for The Record and Read More

NJ Spotlight

Michael Aron

Chief Political Correspondent

Michael Aron has been reporting on New Jersey politics for 42 years. He semi-retired in 2020 but continues to report on elections and other special coverage. Read More

NJ Spotlight

Melissa Rose Cooper


Melissa Rose Cooper is a reporter and multimedia journalist with over a decade of professional experience reporting, shooting and editing video, and producing daily newscasts. She has covered a variety of stories, from breaking news and crime to local issues. Read More

NJ Spotlight

David Cruz

Senior Political Correspondent/Anchor

Senior Correspondent David Cruz is the moderator of Chat Box and Reporters Roundtable. He's been a member of the NJ Spotlight News team since 2011 and has been covering New Jersey's biggest stories for almost 30 years. He's been a reporter and moderator of public affairs programs on television, radio and digital platforms for WBGO and WNYC radio and is the former editor in chief of the Hudson Reporter Newspaper group. Read More

NJ Spotlight

Brenda Flanagan

Senior Correspondent

Senior Correspondent Brenda Flanagan joined NJ Spotlight News in 2013, and focuses on COVID-19, transportation, environmental and immigration issues. The Emmy-award-winning reporter has also worked as an investigative/political correspondent for news departments at WWOR,WNYW and NJN. Read More

NJ Spotlight

Joanna Gagis


Joanna Gagis joined the NJ Spotlight News team in 2018 as a Correspondent whose coverage includes education during COVID-19, health care, the environment, New Jersey politics and more. Read More

NJ Spotlight

Tom Johnson

Energy/environment writer

Tom Johnson covers energy and environmental issues for NJ Spotlight News. A co-founder of NJ Spotlight a decade ago, Johnson previously worked at the Star-Ledger for close to three decades. Read More

NJ Spotlight

Leah Mishkin


Emmy nominated correspondent Leah Mishkin has been on the general assignment beat for NJ Spotlight News since 2017. Her passion is meeting new people and telling their stories. She has been reporting and anchoring at stations across the East Coast since graduating from Emerson College. Read More

NJ Spotlight

John Mooney

Education writer

John Mooney is the founding editor of NJ Spotlight News, starting the news site in 2009 after more than 30 years in print journalism. Before NJ Spotlight News, John was an education reporter with the Newark Star-Ledger and the Bergen Record and a contributing writer for The New York Times. Read More

NJ Spotlight

Colleen O’Dea

Senior Writer and Projects Editor

Colleen O’Dea has spent her entire career reporting New Jersey news and won numerous state and national journalism awards and fellowships. She joined NJ Spotlight News in 2011 and now serves as its data reporter, as well as covering general assignment topics that include elections, politics, housing and corrections. Read More

NJ Spotlight

John Reitmeyer

Budget/finance writer

John Reitmeyer has covered state and local government in New Jersey for more than 20 years, and for the last five years with NJ Spotlight News. He primarily focuses on issues related to the state budget, taxes and public finance. Prior to joining NJ Spotlight News, Reitmeyer wrote for The Record of Bergen County, The Burlington County Times and The Press of Atlantic City. Read More

NJ Spotlight

Raven Santana


Raven Santana has been reporting as a correspondent for NJ Spotlight News since 2018. Previously she worked at FIOS1 News, an NBC affiliate in Massachusetts and Fox 5 in New York. Read More

NJ Spotlight

Rhonda Schaffler

Business Correspondent

Rhonda Schaffler has been reporting on business for NJ Spotlight News since 2016. Previously, she worked as an anchor and reporter for CNN, Reuters and Bloomberg. Read More

NJ Spotlight

Lilo H. Stainton

Health care writer

Lilo H. Stainton has covered New Jersey for two decades, much of it with Gannett newspapers, reporting on public policy, national political conventions and the 9/11 attack on lower Manhattan. She later served as press secretary to Gov. Jon S. Corzine and led a nonprofit coalition's successful advocacy for federal funding in the wake of Superstorm Sandy. She joined NJ Spotlight News fulltime in 2016 to cover health care. Read More

NJ Spotlight

Briana Vannozzi


An award-winning journalist, Briana Vannozzi serves as the anchor for NJ Spotlight News. She's worked in several capacities since joining the news division in 2012, as interim anchor and senior correspondent after years of general assignment reporting as a multimedia journalist. Vannozzi began her television journalism career by cutting her teeth on New Jersey State House politics for New Jersey Network News. And later as a news radio correspondent at FM News 101.9 in New York City. A Burlington County native, she's honored to be serving and covering her home state. Read More


Jon Hurdle
Sheila Noonan
Tim Nostrand
Ian Shern


Jamie Kraft, Senior Managing Editor
John Mooney, Executive Director
John McAlpin, Managing Editor
Patrick Santomauro, Senior Broadcast Producer
Lindsay Rassmann, Supervising Digital Producer
Maire Crowe, Digital Production Editor
Julie Daurio, Producer
Jen Icklan Eckert, Producer, Chat Box and Reporters Roundtable
Rob Rowan, Producer
Buki Elegbede, Associate Producer
Taylor Jung, Associate Producer
Laura Galarza, Digital Production Assistant
Astrea Slezak, Digital Production Assistant
Genesis Obando, Production Assistant
Layal Aboukaf, Production Assistant
Aaron Fischer, Contributing Editor
Sarah Veit, Contributing Editor
Lee Keough, Editor Emeritus


Chloe Motisi, Production Manager
Elvin A. Badger, Director
Adam Cutrone, Supervising Graphics Designer
Ledd Seiffer, Coordinating Producer
Antonio Ortiz, Director of Strategy & Planning
Mallory Massara, Media Manager
Steve Melone, Media Manager
Carla Cucinotta, Graphic Designer
Renee Maskin, Graphic Designer
Frank Brown Jr., Audio
Amelia Cintron, Makeup Artist
Meghan Gorman, CG/Server Operator
Matt McNamara, Studio Camera
Mark Nixdorf, Engineer In Charge
Pat Scannella, Stage Manager
Kevin Phalon, Field Camera/Editing
Mattie Rosen, Field Camera/Editing
Brendan Smyth, Field Camera/Editing
Justin Woo, Field Camera/Editing

See NJ PBS station staff here.