James M. Odato named Adirondack Explorer editor

SARANAC LAKE — Investigative journalist and author James M. Odato, who has been serving as interim editor for the Saranac Lake-based non-profit publication Adirondack Explorer since September 2021, has been named editor of the publication.

Odato spent 18 years at the Times Union of Albany as an investigative reporter uncovering waste of taxpayer dollars by state leaders and winning numerous awards, including from the prestigious Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE) for a series on a secret piggybank used by state legislators. Prior to his work at the Times Union, Odato worked in reporting positions at the Buffalo News, Schenectady Gazette and at the Gannett Corporation as a bureau chief and reporter. He began his journalism career in New York in Saranac Lake at the Adirondack Daily Enterprise.

In recent years, Odato taught journalism as an adjunct professor at the University at Albany, The College of Saint Rose and the Sage Colleges. He was advisor for the Union College newspaper.

“We are delighted Jim has agreed to lead the talented team of journalists at the Adirondack Explorer. They, in turn, are fortunate to be learning from one of the industry’s best,” said Explorer Publisher Tracy Ormsbee. “Jim is dedicated to telling important stories that will help our readers understand the Adirondack Park, while also keeping watch over the leaders and agencies charged with its care.

“We look forward to watching where Jim takes the Explorer and its websites next.”

He is a graduate of University of Massachusetts Amherst and has a masters in English from University at Albany. His first book, “This Brain Had a Mouth,” was published in October. He is married to retired journalist Teresa Buckley.


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