JOHN PENDYGRAFT was born and raised in El Paso, Texas, and has been at the Tampa Bay Times since 1997. Pendygraft has received national awards for feature writing, video and still photography from the American Society of News Editors, Society of Professional Journalists, Scripps Howard, National Headliner Awards, Pictures of the Year International and the Emmy awards. His documentary revealing escalating violence and neglect in Florida mental hospitals was included in the winning entry for the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Investigative Reporting, won a regional Emmy and was a finalist for a national Emmy. His continuing mental health coverage was nominated for a regional Emmy in 2018. In 2017-2018, Pendygraft completed a Knight-Wallace Fellowship at the University of Michigan and is pursuing a Ph.D. in anthropology at the University of South Florida. Contact him at