Two reporters joining WSJ investigations team
Wall Street Journal investigations editor Michael Siconolfi sent out the following announcement on Monday:
We are delighted to announce that Joe Palazzolo and Shalini Ramachandran, two of the Journal’s top reporters, are joining our Investigations team.
Joe and Shalini are well-known throughout this newsroom for their high-profile pieces, sourcing skills and ambition. We’re greatly looking forward to working with them in their new roles.
Joe was a lead reporter on the Journal team that won the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting for a series of stories that revealed the hush-money payments to Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal, and President Trump’s direct participation in both.
His coverage of the hush deals began before the 2016 election when he, along with Michael Rothfeld and Lukas Alpert, broke news of the secret arrangement between the publisher of the National Enquirer and McDougal, a former Playboy model, who alleged an affair with President Trump. Last year, Joe and Michael broke the news of the Stormy Daniels deal, triggering year-long coverage that included more than two dozen exclusives and numerous deep leders.
Joe’s stories also have led to the prosecution of a British executive who bought contracts in the Middle East with bribes; revealed tax fraud by Chocolate-maker Cadbury; and showed that killings in self-defense had increased in states with “stand your ground” laws.
Joe joined Dow Jones in Washington, D.C., in 2010, as part of the inaugural team of reporters for Corruption Currents, the forerunner to Risk & Compliance Journal. He moved to the Journal in New York the following year to write the Law Blog under Jo Chung. He has been a national legal reporter in the Law Bureau since 2012. He previously had been a staff reporter for Main Justice, a news site focused on the Justice Department; Legal Times in Washington, D.C.; and the now-defunct Baltimore Examiner.
A St. Louis native, Joe received a masters degree in journalism from the University of Maryland in 2006. He lives with his wife Tara, dog Avis and cat Ozone in Flatbush, and enjoys trashy sci-fi books, wiffle ball and brisk walks in Prospect Park.
Shalini joined the Journal as a college intern in the summer of 2011 in the Atlanta bureau. She became a staff reporter the following January in the Media and Marketing bureau in New York. In that role, she helped break many significant developments in a cable and media industry roiled by cord-cutting, including AT&T’s $49 billion acquisition of DirecTV, Netflix’s first payment to Comcast that stoked a net neutrality war, the breakup of Comcast’s $45 billion Time Warner Cable deal, and accelerated subscriber losses at ESPN that led to an investor reckoning that cord-cutting was more severe than what executives industry-wide had let on.
Shalini expanded her beat over the years and has written numerous leders on topics including the NFL’s hardball tactics in TV negotiations, ESPN’s political turmoil and fractured relationship with Disney, Apple’s fumbled efforts to break into television, management malfeasance at Univision, corporate fighting between Comcast and the Murdochs, and Netflix’s firing culture.
Late last year, she transitioned to a beat covering corporate culture and governance in the Management bureau, helping reporters around the empire break news about companies including AT&T. She’s also written deep dives on Silicon Valley culture and is spearheading a series looking into the truth about internet speeds and pricing.
Shalini attended Emory University and Oxford University and graduated with bachelor’s and master’s degrees in English. She sang, rapped and beatboxed in her college a cappella group and vaguely remembers writing her thesis on James Joyce and Albert Einstein but probably couldn’t tell you what it’s about. She can, however, recite “Llama Llama, Time to Share” by heart, thanks to her two-year-old son Shashvat. She lives in Jersey City with her husband Sunil and son.
Please join us in welcoming Joe and Shalini to their exciting new roles.