Ellen Berkovitch

Special Projects Lead

Berkovitch leads the Special Projects Reporting team of herself, Hannah Colton and Rita Daniels, reporting "Dark Canyon: Sexual Abuse and Secrecy in the Archdiocse of Santa Fe." She was KSFR News Director from August 2016 to September 2017. In spring 2017 she was awarded the Large Market Radio Excellence in Journalism prize from the New Mexico Association of Broadcasters for continuing coverage. The four-part series, Vulnerable Adults, was produced and hosted by Ellen Berkovitch, with one-part being contributed by News contributor Derrick Toledo.

After relocating to New Mexico in 1993, she spent seven years as a freelance art critic for Albuquerque Journal North, and then became a staff writer at Santa Fe New Mexican’s Pasatiempo from 1999-2001.

In 2000, Berkovitch won an Associated Press investigative journalism award for her series on art dealer Gerald Peters’ sale of paintings attributed to Georgia O’Keeffe that experts later determined were fakes.  She spent the next decade contributing to national publications including Artforum, Art&Auction, Art and Antiques, The New York Times, Los Angeles Weekly and other newspapers and magazines. She was editor-in-chief of Santa Fe Trend from 2007 to 2009.

In 2009, inspired by the digital revolution in journalism, Berkovitch became a journalism entrepreneur, founding the online art magazine of AdobeAirstream.com now in its eighth year of publication.

The interior department is not even considering climate change in its oil and gas leasing decisions. So said Kyle Tisdel of Western Environmental Law Center, which has filed a lawsuit on behalf of Wild Earth Guardians and Physicians for Social Responsibility Against the Obama Administration. The suit asks that federal policy for oil and gas leases address climate change concerns

There are now Seven counties in southern and southeastern New Mexico where mosquitoes capable of transmitting the Zika virus have been identified. New epidemiologist David Selvidge says

risk of local transmission in New Mexico remains low, but DOH is urging pregnant women or women of childbearing age to avoid travel to countries where Zika transmission is prevalent

KSFR News has been covering the upcoming closure of the Cibola County Correctional Facility in Milan New Mexico that will put 257 workers into unemployment. The prison is scheduled to close on September 30th. The prison closure is part of a federal decision to not renew private prison contracts. Sen. Tom Udall’s spokesperson Jen Talhelm described the letter that Senators Udall and Heinrich sent to deputy atty general Sally Yates on Friday. The unemployment rate in Cibola county is 9 percent.

The state is in a deep budget hole. Sandra Fish of New Mexico In Depth describes the impasse dividing state legislators from the governor, who has pledged no tax increases.

Methane pollution is a climate-changing side effect of oil and gas. NASA has identified that the highest concentration of methane in the US is centered in a hot spot over San Juan Basin in northern New Mexico. Now NASA has released a new study definitively identifying the source of that pollution: Leaky oil and gas wells. I spoke to Jon Goldstien of Environmental Defense Fund for more.

The Indigenous Fine Art Market or IFAM launched three years ago. As a new market occurring during Santa Fe’s Indian Market week it has focused on emerging and nontraditional Native American artists. IFAM  founder and director is John Torres Nez who had previously worked for SWAIA -- the organization behind Indian Market. This year IFAM was scheduled to have a three day at the Santa Fe Railyard Park—including Saturday. But IFAM organizers had to shutter the fair after just two days, after Railyard officials discovered a snag.

Sandra Fish of New Mexico in Depth talks with Ellen Berkovitch about the death penalty and whether House democrats will stay in the minority after this fall's election.

Michael Moore fans might recognize Halla Tomasdottir as the Icelandic businesswoman featured in Moores last movie, Where to Invade Next.  Halla Tomasdottir is in Santa Fe where she recently addressed a Women and Money forum sponsored by the Women’s International Study Center. We caught up with her right before that.

The New Mexican reported today that state prison officials had been caught “double celling" prisoners at the Western New Mexico mens' prison in Grants. Double celling is when two prisoners are in a cell built for one. This violates a 1991 court order called the Duran Decree that the NM state Corrections Department agreed to after prison overcrowding instigated the 1980 Santa Fe prison riot.  33 inmates died in that riot. Santa Fe attorney Mark Donatelli represented inmates after the prison riot. He spoke to KSFR from Phoenix. 

Unemployment in Grants and Milan New Mexico stands at 9 percent. There are currently three prisons located in Grants and Milan. An employer of roughly 1% of the county’s population has been one of those prisons, the Cibola county correctional facility.

In this new regular Thursday segment, Sandra Fish and Ellen Berkovitch discuss whether Gary Johnson will play spoiler in the presidential election. And spoiler to which side?

In this new regular Thursday segment, Sandra Fish and Ellen Berkovitch discuss whether Gary Johnson will play spoiler in the presidential election. And spoiler to which side?

The copper rule adopted in 2013 is one of the best known of Ryan Flynn's regulation legacies at the New Mexico Environment Department. Now New Mexico's highest court will review the controversial guidelines on September 28th. Ellen Berkovitch talked yesterday with Bill Olson, former groundwater quality bureau chief of the New Mexico Environment Department turned citizen activist opposing the copper rule in court.

Jim Obergefell was the lead plaintiff in the landmark case for marriage equality that passed the Supreme Court in June 2015. His recent book, Love Wins, chronicles his marriage to his longtime partner, John Arthur, and the events that led Obergefell to become a civil rights activist working on behalf of LBGTQ equality across the US.

Jim Obergefell appeared in Santa Fe at a August 9th  benefit for Equality New Mexico and the Envision Fund of the Santa Fe Community Foundation.

Through our Solutions Journalism Network initiative, we bring you this report on forest health in New Mexico. Specifically, on the ways that a US Forest Service-funded program has brought about healthier partnerships in service of healthier forests. Ellen Berkovitch has the story.