About James Odato

In a career rooted in watchdog reporting, Explorer editor James M. Odato has been cited as one of New York’s top journalists covering state government, gambling, and abuse and waste of public money. He has written thousands of articles, his byline has appeared in numerous national publications and his investigative stories have spurred reforms. As a staff reporter for five daily newspapers, including the Albany Times Union and Buffalo News, Odato has received more than 30 awards from the Associated Press, New York Publishers Association, the New York Legislative Correspondents Association and other media organizations. In 2007, Investigative Reporters and Editors recognized his reporting with the Freedom of Information Award Medal. In October 2021, the University of Massachusetts Press released his book, This Brain Had a Mouth, Lucy Gwin and the Voice of Disability Nation.

Reader Interactions


  1. Joan Grabe says

    We can watch this disaster happen in real time – a plucky little local college will be subsumed by this nebulous amorphous organization, FedCap.I would really be surprised if the accrediting organization gives it’s approval to this merger. And without an approval, degrees are meaningless. I have some experience with colleges as I am on the board of my alma mater’s Foundation and on the Investment Committee which handles the endowment. My college is part of The City University of New York which was really short changed during the Cuomo years as was SUNY. Having the former Chancellor of SUNY in this mix is strange but politics again I guess. I am dismayed that the participants here are refusing to talk, to comment or to explain. That does not inspire confidence. I hope there is some resolution soon for the sake of the current students, faculty and support employees.


    Best of luck with Malatras at the helm. He jumped in at SUNY Oneonta during the early phase of Covid, essentially removed our new President, a woman who was well respected and replaced her with a crony from another SUNY college. During the entire episode it was obvious that the “good old boys” network was alive and well. My guess is Paul Smiths won’t be long for this world with him guiding the institution.

  3. John says

    I don’t often leave comments but it seems as if the trustees have forgotten the reason the Smith family endowed the property in the first place as stated in Phelps Smiths will. Forestry. Hotel management, liberal arts and a place to serve the Adirondacks. I worry if this merger gives away control to an outside corporation some of the 14,000 acres in its campus will fall prey to real estate deals. I can’t see a positive in this secretive move. What are they hiding?

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