Civil Beat Staff

Patti Epler

Patti Epler is the Editor and General Manager of Civil Beat.

Patti has been a reporter and editor since 1976. She began her career in Anchorage, Alaska, writing a column for The Anchorage Times and covering cops and courts in the frontier state at a time construction of the massive trans-Alaska pipeline was drawing thousands of young people north and opening up a new energy source for the country.

Patti moved to Hawaii in 1982 where she lived on a 41-foot sailboat in Keehi Lagoon and worked for Honolulu Magazine. She returned to Alaska in 1984 to a job covering the state’s booming oil and gas business, utilities, mining and environmental issues. In 1989, she was one of the lead reporters on the Exxon Valdez oil spill. She was also a member of the Anchorage Daily News team that won the 1989 Pulitzer Prize Gold Medal For Public Service for a series on alcoholism and self-destructive behavior among Alaska Natives.

In 1990, she and her family, including a young daughter, moved to Olympia, Washington, where Patti covered politics and the Legislature for the Tacoma News Tribune. In 1997, she moved to Phoenix, Arizona, and an editor’s job at the alt-weekly, Phoenix New Times. In 2004, she became projects editor and city editor at the East Valley Tribune, at the time the Phoenix metro area’s second largest daily paper. In 2008, Patti edited and directed that paper’s series on the immigration enforcement practices of a colorful local sheriff, an effort that was awarded the 2009 Pulitzer Prize for Local Reporting.

She moved to the online news world in 2009, joining with other journalists to found the Arizona Guardian, a short-lived news site covering politics and government. In 2010, she returned to Alaska to work on another reporter-founded website, the Alaska Dispatch.

She was hired as Civil Beat’s deputy editor in September 2011 and was named Editor when former Editor John Temple left to take a job as managing editor of the Washington Post in April 2012.

Patti is an old-school investigative journalist in a new media world. She still values solid relationships with news sources and strong journalistic ethics. Like many of her colleagues, she’s been laid off (more than once) from what were once vibrant and thriving newspapers. She is now a true believer in online journalism and all that the internet has to offer news operations that embrace meaningful reporting and investigative and watchdog journalism to encourage community discussion of important civic and political issues. Those concepts are at the core of Civil Beat.

She’s always available to grab a cup of coffee and talk about Hawaii and story ideas.

You can follow Patti on twitter @PattiEpler. You can also email her at patti@civilbeat.org. Direct line is 808-377-0561.

December 2014

Monday, December 8

Tulsi Gabbard Stalker Gets Nearly 3 Years in Prison

Saturday, December 6

Kauai Newspaper Offers $10k Reward for Info About Monk Seal Killing

Monday, December 1

Longtime Hanabusa Aide Goes to Work for HPU

November 2014

Monday, November 24

Honolulu Deputy Prosecutor Suspended in Negligent Homicide Case

Monday, November 10

J.N. Musto Is Retiring From UHPA

October 2014

Wednesday, October 29

Hawaii Volcano Lava Flow: ‘Feel the Heat’

Sunday, October 26

Linda Lingle, Optimist: ‘After All, I’m a Republican in Hawaii’

Saturday, October 11

‘Seized Assets’ Prove Lucrative for Hawaii Cops

Wednesday, October 8

The Weather Channel’s History of Kilauea’s Lava Flow

Missing the Point on Tulsi Gabbard’s Surf Video

Pew Survey: People Just Don’t Care About the 2014 Elections

Monday, October 6

Aikea Movement: Knocking on Doors

Thursday, October 2

Is 2014 the Year of the GMO?

Developer to Court: Make Homeowners Stop Leaking Documents

September 2014

Saturday, September 27

Honolulu Ethics Commission Fines Romy Cachola $50K

Thursday, September 4

Editor’s Desk: Leading the Discussion on Key Hawaii Issues

August 2014

Friday, August 15

800 Uncounted Ballots Found on Maui

Puna Power: More Homes Restored But Thousands Still in the Dark

Puna Primary: Turnout Is Picking Up

July 2014

Wednesday, July 30

National Pundits Buzzing About Hawaii Gov Race

Wednesday, July 2

Judge Says No to Groups on Both Sides of GMO Lawsuit

June 2014

Monday, June 9

Pension Promises: Here’s How — and Why — We Did This Project

Tuesday, June 3

Hawaii Elections Guide 2014

Hawaii Elections 2014: Voter Registration and Turnout

May 2014

Friday, May 30

Eric Shinseki Resigns as VA Secretary

Thursday, May 29

Abercrombie: ‘This State Has Never Been Run Better’

Wednesday, May 21

Civil Beat Four Years Later: We’re Getting a Facelift and New Faces

Thursday, May 15

Will Lawmakers Ever Do Anything About Lobbyists?

March 2014

Monday, March 31

Editor’s Desk: Will Our U.S. Senate Candidates Do the Right Thing?

Sunday, March 23

Civil Beat Presents: The Return of John Temple

Monday, March 3

Editor’s Desk: Why Is There No Record of Many Legislative Hearings?

February 2014

Wednesday, February 26

Deedy Transcripts Revealed: ‘Not Something We See Every Day’

January 2014

Monday, January 20

Editor’s Desk: Time for the Legislature To Reform Public Records Practices