Naomi Schalit

NS hedshotNaomi Schalit is the senior reporter for the Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting, a non-profit, non-partisan investigative news service in Maine. She co-founded the center in 2009 with her husband and colleague, John Christie.

A graduate of Princeton University with a degree in religion and Near Eastern studies, Schalit attended the Graduate School of Journalism at University of California at Berkeley and began her career at the San Jose Mercury News. In the last two decades, she has written for magazines and newspapers around the country, worked as a columnist for the Maine Times and for five years was a reporter and producer at Maine Public Radio. While at MPR, her reports were featured on National Public Radio, Public Radio International and the CBC. Schalit won many awards for her radio reporting, including one from Public Radio News Directors, Inc., or PRNDI, for her expose of an historic state conservation deal gone bad.

In between all the reporting, writing and producing, she also took temporary leaves from journalism in 1993 to run her own floorcloth manufacturing studio and almost a decade later, to serve for three years as executive director and lobbyist for a statewide non-profit conservation group.

In April 2005, she joined the Kennebec Journal and Morning Sentinel as opinion page editor, where she worked until the papers were sold. In 2007, she won first place in the New England AP News Editors’ competition for editorial writing during 2006.

Schalit was the recipient of a 2007 Publick Occurrences Award from the New England Newspaper & Press Association. She received an honorable mention for the Anna Quindlen Award in 2007, placed runner-up in the 2007 Casey Journalism Awards and received first place for editorial writing in the 2007 National Sigma Delta Chi Awards, all for her multi-part editorial investigative series on hunger in Maine, “For I Was Hungry.” That series also earned her the first “Force for Good” award given by Portland non-profit Preble Street.

She was a 2014 co-winner of a Publick Occurrences Award for a series of stories, “RX for Theft,” about pharmacists who steal. While Schalit has contributed to almost every story published by the center, she has developed a specialty in energy and legislative and executive branch ethics.

Schalit has two grown children and lives in Hallowell, Maine, with her husband.