Civil Beat Staff

Brittany Lyte

Brittany Lyte is a general assignment reporter for Civil Beat who specializes in watchdog reporting, narrative storytelling and coverage of neighbor island and social issues. Prior to joining the Honolulu newsroom in March 2018, Brittany lived on the north shore of Kaua’i, where she juggled a freelance writing career while learning to surf, scuba dive, hunt wild pigs, prepare delicious ulu pancakes and perfect the soursop cocktail. Her writing during this period appeared in publications including The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The Atlantic and Hana Hou! magazine. Previously, she worked for Hearst Newspapers in Connecticut. An Upstate New York native, she has a degree in journalism from Boston University.

In a decade of reporting, Brittany has traveled to Russia, Poland and across the U.S., interviewing subjects ranging from the Dalai Lama to Ghostface Killah of the Wu-Tang Clan. Her writing has explored a similarly vast range of topics, from the plight of an accused cannibal on the run from police to an investigation into undocumented toxic waste buried beneath suburban Connecticut homes. Her series on the latter subject earned national accolades and inspired the state legislature to adopt a new real estate disclosure law to better protect homebuyers.

In pursuit of a good story, Brittany has learned to fly an M-26 Air Wolf and chased down a suspected killer while wearing heels and a silk dress.

New Director Joins Hawaii’s Top Mental Health Advocacy Group Contributed by Mental Health America of Hawaii

New Director Joins Hawaii’s Top Mental Health Advocacy Group

Bryan Talisayan hails from Waianae and brings more than 20 years of nonprofit experience to the top job at Mental Health America of Hawaii.

Hanapepe: ‘This Is The Town That Keeps Refusing To Die’ Kuʻu Kauanoe/Civil Beat

Hanapepe: ‘This Is The Town That Keeps Refusing To Die’

The Kauai town has its flash points, but a shared sense of pride continues to hold this community together.

Hawaii Lawmakers Work To Keep The Mentally Ill Out Of Jail Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Hawaii Lawmakers Work To Keep The Mentally Ill Out Of Jail

Mental health advocates, state officials, police and lawmakers have been working together to come up with better ways to get treatment for non-violent offenders.

How These Makaha Neighbors Saved A County Park From Crime And Weeds Kuʻu Kauanoe/Civil Beat

How These Makaha Neighbors Saved A County Park From Crime And Weeds

When police and social services agencies couldn’t help, this small band of neighbors took matters into their own hands. And it worked.

Measuring Hawaii’s Social Capital In The Age Of Disconnect Kuʻu Kauanoe/Civil Beat

Measuring Hawaii’s Social Capital In The Age Of Disconnect

Whether you vote in local elections and how well you trust your neighbor has an impact on your community’s social capital.

A Hawaii Doctor’s Journey Toward Embracing Medical Aid In Dying Cory Lum/Civil Beat

A Hawaii Doctor’s Journey Toward Embracing Medical Aid In Dying

Dr. Melvin Palalay was conflicted when a dying patient asked him to be her medical advocate in ending her life. This is the story of how he reconciled his duty to his patient with his Catholic faith.

Plenty Of Warning Signs But Few Treatment Options In Police Killer Case Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Plenty Of Warning Signs But Few Treatment Options In Police Killer Case

Neighbors were well aware of Jerry Hanel’s bizarre behavior, but it’s hard to force unwilling people to get mental health treatment.

Creating More Treatment Options in Hawaii’s Fractured Mental Health System Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Creating More Treatment Options in Hawaii’s Fractured Mental Health System

A key feature of the proposed reforms includes diverting the mentally ill from ERs into outpatient and residential programs more tailored to their needs.

Report: Too Many People Are Dying While Waiting For Medical Aid In Dying New Jersey 101.5 via YouTube

Report: Too Many People Are Dying While Waiting For Medical Aid In Dying

Doctors say Hawaii’s mandatory 20-day period is too long in some cases.

Deadly Mosquitoes Are Killing Off Hawaii’s Rare Forest Birds Courtesy: Jack Jefferey Photography

Deadly Mosquitoes Are Killing Off Hawaii’s Rare Forest Birds

Scientists are racing to eradicate disease-carrying mosquitoes from forests, but to some a solution still feels like forever away.

3 Dead, 1 Wounded In Shooting At Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard Cory Lum/Civil Beat

3 Dead, 1 Wounded In Shooting At Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard

Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam said the shooter, a U.S. sailor, killed himself after shooting three Department of Defense civilian workers.

Hawaii’s Adult Care Home Bait-And-Switch Scheme Concerns Lawmakers Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Hawaii’s Adult Care Home Bait-And-Switch Scheme Concerns Lawmakers

Unlicensed care homes are a continuing problem despite efforts to beef up state oversight.