Ike Swetlitz is an investigative reporter for Searchlight New Mexico, a non-profit journalism organization covering the state of New Mexico and the surrounding region. He is based in Albuquerque and focuses on stories about criminal justice.
Previously, Ike worked in Boston and Washington, D.C. as a correspondent for STAT, a national health and medical science publication. Since he joined in 2015, he has covered Donald Trump, EpiPens, genetic engineering, concussions and the NFL, and other odds and ends. He has appeared in the Washington Post and on the public radio programs Here & Now and The World.
Ike's reporting on the price of EpiPens in the summer of 2016 helped spur Congressional inquiries and attorney general investigations into Mylan for their pricing of EpiPens and potentially anti-competitive business practices.
He sat down for three hours with Donald Trump's doctor, investigated a Trump vitamin company that purported to sell customized nutritional supplements based on a urine sample, and revealed a relationship between Trump and a top Boston hospital.
Ike traveled across the country of Burkina Faso to learn how scientists were getting the people's consent to do research on "gene drive" mosquitoes, which might eliminate malaria but could also spread rapidly throughout the region and might be unstoppable once released. Back in the United States, he took a ferry to the Lyme-stricken island of Nantucket to report on how scientists are using local government to give people a voice in genetic engineering projects. And he lifted the curtain on an international project to create whole genomes from scratch.
He has written about the relationship between the football and concussion science, looking at how dubious science conducted by a former NFL physician impacted in the medical literature and vetting questionable claims by a chocolate milk company that their product might help athletes recover from a concussion.
Ike recently graduated from Yale University, where, from 2012-2015, he wrote and edited for The New Journal. In 2013 and 2014, The New Journal was recognized as the best student magazine in the northeast by the Society of Professional Journalists. Ike also wrote for the New Haven Independent, a local non-profit news website.
During the summer of 2013, Ike traveled to Somanya, Ghana to work as an intern at 90.1 Rite FM, a radio station that focuses on agricultural news. He scoured local Ghanaian newspapers for stories, wrote scripts for the morning broadcast, and accompanied reporters into the field.
Two summers later, he worked as an investigative journalism intern at The Medill Justice Project, a criminal justice reporting center at Northwestern University in Evanston, IL. He collaborated with a team of interns on an in-depth project about issues women experience in prison. He traveled across the Chicagoland area and across the country to interview formerly incarcerated women and flew to Oregon to visit a female prison facility.
In addition to journalism, Ike is also passionate about the physical sciences. Ike received a Bachelor of Science in Physics and has done research in high energy particle physics and quantum computing. He assisted a professor in the Quantronics Laboratory at Yale University in writing an undergraduate-level quantum physics textbook, and he wrote press releases for the Yale Quantum Institute and YaleNews.