ProPublica announced today that veteran economics journalist Peter Gosselin will join the staff as a contributing reporter, covering major trends, structures and programs shaping the lives of Americans age 60 and older. With Americans reaching 60 with one quarter or more of their lives still ahead of them in reasonable health – a 30-percent increase from the mid-1950s when they were born – Gosselin will pursue stories which may include age discrimination in employment and other arenas, retirement, home sales and relocation in later life, and the decline of health care treatment with age. This beat is funded in part by the generous support of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. Gosselin will begin at ProPublica in January.
For more than three decades as a journalist, Gosselin has covered the U.S. and global economy with a focus on the lived experiences of vulnerable populations. He spent a decade as the national economics correspondent for the Los Angeles Times, where he helped devise data reporting techniques to show that business and government are shifting risks to American working households. From 1985 to 1999, he reported on economic policy for the Boston Globe, including several years on its Spotlight team where he investigated money laundering, stock and futures scams, and fraud in the commercialization of research at Harvard Medical School.
Gosselin most recently served as a reporter-at-large for Bloomberg News, as well as a senior analyst at Bloomberg Government, where he used unique datasets to investigate health care policy. His examination of federal contract disbursement revealed delayed IT spending on the HealthCare.gov website prior to its botched rollout.
In addition to journalism, Gosselin has tackled the impact of economic policy through the spheres of government and research. From 2010 to 2011, he was a senior economic advisor for the Department of Health and Human Services, and from 2009 to 2010 he served as the Treasury Secretary’s chief speechwriter. As a fellow at the Urban Institute, he measured rising economic risks to working Americans, from weakened social safety nets to cutbacks in private health insurance.
“Peter has a strong track record of identifying economic and policy trends previously largely unnoticed,” said Stephen Engelberg, ProPublica’s editor-in-chief. “We are excited to have him join ProPublica to pursue important questions about how economic policy and other practices treat the rising population of aging Americans.”
“I’m thrilled for the opportunity to work with the ProPublica team,” said Gosselin. “I can’t think of a better venue from which to cover aging, something that happens to all of us lucky enough to make it through the years, but a subject that almost never attracts systematic coverage.”
Among other honors, Gosselin has won two George Polk Awards, the Society of Professional Journalists’ Sigma Delta Chi Award, the Aronson Award for Social Justice Journalism, the Sidney Hillman Prize and the National Headliner Award. He is also the author of High Wire: The Precarious Financial Lives of American Families.