NPR: Greg Allen

As NPR's Miami correspondent, Greg Allen reports on the diverse issues and developments tied to the Southeast. He covers everything from breaking news to economic and political stories to arts and human interest features. He moved into this role in 2006, after four years as NPR's Midwest correspondent.

Allen was a key part of NPR's coverage of the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, providing some of the first reports on the disaster. He was on the frontlines of NPR's coverage of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, arriving in New Orleans before the storm hit and filing on the chaos and flooding that hit the city as the levees broke. Allen's reporting played an important role in NPR's coverage of the aftermath and the rebuilding of New Orleans, as well as in coverage of the BP oil spill which brought new hardships to the Gulf coast.

As NPR's only correspondent in Florida, Allen covered the dizzying boom and bust of the state's real estate market, the state's important role in the 2008 presidential election and has produced stories highlighting the state's unique culture and natural beauty, from Miami's Little Havana to the Everglades.

Allen has spent more than three decades in radio news, the first ten as a reporter in Ohio and Philadelphia and the last as an editor, producer and reporter at NPR.

Before moving into reporting, Allen served as the executive producer of NPR's national daily live call-in show, Talk of the Nation. As executive producer he handled the day-to-day operations of the program as well as developed and produced remote broadcasts with live audiences and special breaking news coverage. He was with Talk of the Nation from 2000 to 2002.

Prior to that position, Allen spent three years as a senior editor for NPR's Morning Edition, developing stories and interviews, shaping the program's editorial direction, and supervising the program's staff. In 1993, he started a four year stint as an editor with Morning Edition just after working as Morning Edition's swing editor, providing editorial and production supervision in the early morning hours. Allen also worked for a time as the editor of NPR's National Desk.

Before coming to NPR, Allen was a reporter with NPR member station WHYY-FM in Philadelphia from 1987 to 1990.

His radio career includes serving as the producer of Freedom's Doors Media Project — five radio documentaries on immigration in American cities that was distributed through NPR's Horizons series — frequent freelance work with NPR, Monitor Radio, Voice of America, and WHYY-FM, and work as a reporter/producer of NPR member station WYSO-FM in Yellow Springs, Ohio.

Allen graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 1977, with a B.A. cum laude. As a student and after graduation, Allen worked at WXPN-FM, the public radio station on campus, as a host and producer for a weekly folk music program that included interviews, features, live and recorded music.

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4:59am

Wed August 28, 2013
Law

Florida Asked To Reimburse George Zimmerman For Court Costs

Originally published on Wed August 28, 2013 12:33 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

More than a month after he was acquitted on murder charges, George Zimmerman - or at least his lawyers - are headed back to court. Zimmerman is the Neighborhood Watch volunteer who shot and killed unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin. His lawyers are asking the state of Florida to reimburse their client for court costs incurred during his murder trial - costs, they say, might be as high as $300,000.

NPR's Greg Allen reports.

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6:02pm

Tue August 20, 2013
Shots - Health News

Fla. Balks At Insurance Navigators As Obamacare Deadline Nears

Originally published on Tue August 20, 2013 10:02 pm

The federal government has awarded about $67 million in grants to groups around the country that will help people shop for health coverage. But Florida Gov. Rick Scott says the guidelines for these so-called navigators are inadequate.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

A key part of the Affordable Care Act takes effect on Oct. 1. That's when Americans shopping for health insurance can begin enrolling in the program.

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3:12am

Wed July 31, 2013
U.S.

In Florida, A Clash Over Exhuming Bodies At Reform School

Originally published on Wed July 31, 2013 12:32 pm

Metal crosses mark graves at the cemetery of the former Arthur Dozier School for Boys in Marianna, Fla. Investigators in Florida using ground-penetrating radar and soil samples say there are nearly 100 unmarked graves on the grounds.
Michael Spooneybarger Reuters/Landov

Researchers at the University of South Florida are fighting with the state over access to the grounds of a now-closed reform school.

For decades, the Dozier School for Boys was notorious for the harsh treatment boys received there. Now, a forensic anthropologist and her team want permission to exhume dozens of bodies they found in unmarked graves, but are meeting resistance from state officials.

White House Boys

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3:00am

Mon July 29, 2013
Around the Nation

Miami Beach Preservationists Battle Glitterati Over Homes

Originally published on Mon July 29, 2013 12:35 pm

This house owned by a plastic surgeon and his wife, a cast member on The Real Housewives of Miami, is the poster child for efforts to stop runaway demolitions in Miami Beach.
Courtesy of Arthur Marcus

Some of Miami Beach's quietest and most historic neighborhoods can be found in a chain of small islands connected by a causeway. On Di Lido Island, a community of homes built 50 and 60 years ago is being torn down and replaced, lot by lot. On one street alone, five houses currently are slated for demolition.

Daniel Ciraldo stands across the street from two '60s-era houses that will soon be demolished and replaced by a new home nearly double their combined size.

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5:21am

Fri July 26, 2013
U.S.

Zimmerman Juror Says He 'Got Away With Murder'

Originally published on Fri July 26, 2013 7:33 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Another juror has now spoken out about the George Zimmerman trial. The only minority on the panel says she believes the neighborhood watch volunteer who killed Trayvon Martin got away with murder. Zimmerman was acquitted earlier this month. During the trial, the judge ordered that jurors' identities remain confidential; and that order has not yet been lifted.

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6:40pm

Fri July 19, 2013
Law

Florida Governor Stands Firm On 'Stand Your Ground' Law

Originally published on Fri July 19, 2013 8:30 pm

Florida Gov. Rick Scott speaks to protesters Thursday in the Capitol in Tallahassee. Scott told the protesters that he won't ask lawmakers to revamp the state's controversial self-defense law.
Phil Sears AP

In the days after a Florida jury acquitted George Zimmerman in the killing of teenager Trayvon Martin, protesters camped out at Gov. Rick Scott's office in Tallahassee, calling for a meeting.

When Scott met with protesters on Thursday, one of the group's leaders, Philip Agnew, asked the governor to convene a special session of the Legislature to look at repealing the state's stand your ground law.

"It is the time for leadership," Agnew said. "The world is watching. Most definitely, the nation is watching. And you have the opportunity to stand tall above the rest."

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7:16am

Sat July 13, 2013
News

Zimmerman Jury Deliberates

Originally published on Sat July 13, 2013 1:22 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. A six-person jury in Sanford, Fla., is deliberating today in the murder trial of George Zimmerman. He's the neighborhood watch volunteer who's charged in the shooting death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin. After three weeks of testimony and more than 50 witnesses, the jury heard closing arguments from prosecutors and defense yesterday.

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4:42am

Thu July 4, 2013
Law

Zimmerman Trial Takes July 4 Off, Case Resumes Friday

Originally published on Thu July 4, 2013 9:48 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Let's get an update now on the Trayvon Martin murder case being held in Sanford, Florida. The state is expected soon to wrap up its case against George Zimmerman. He's the neighborhood watch volunteer who shot and killed the unarmed teenager. In a week and a half of testimony, prosecutors have painted a picture of Zimmerman as a wannabe cop, someone who profiled Trayvon Martin and then, after he shot Martin, tailored his story to fit Florida's self-defense law.

NPR's Greg Allen reports.

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8:00pm

Wed June 26, 2013
Science

New Bugs In Florida Stymie Researchers, Threaten Crops

Originally published on Thu June 27, 2013 5:34 am

The psyllid, discovered eight years ago in Florida citrus groves, has been problematic for researchers and farmers alike.
University of California, Davis AP

With its pleasant climate, Florida has become home to more exotic and invasive species of plants and animals than any other state in the continental U.S. Some invasive species have been brought in deliberately, such as the Burmese python or the Cuban brown snail. But the majority of species are imported inadvertently as cargo.

Amanda Hodges, who heads the biosecurity research lab at the University of Florida, says that until recently, scientists saw about a dozen new bugs arrive in Florida each year.

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4:46am

Tue June 25, 2013
Law

Prosecutors Begin Their Case Against Trayvon Martin's Killer

Originally published on Tue June 25, 2013 11:10 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

In Sanford, Florida today, prosecutors continue making their case against George Zimmerman, the neighborhood watch volunteer who last year shot and killed teenager Trayvon Martin. Zimmerman is charged with second degree murder. In opening statements yesterday, prosecutors described Zimmerman as a vigilante who wanted to rid his neighborhood of people who didn't belong there.

Zimmerman's lawyers say he acted in self-defense. From Sanford, NPR's Greg Allen reports.

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6:10pm

Mon June 24, 2013
Law

George Zimmerman's Murder Trial Begins In Florida

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel.

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4:30am

Mon June 10, 2013
Law

Jury Selection To Begin In Trayvon Martin Case

Originally published on Mon June 10, 2013 7:08 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

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6:39am

Sat June 1, 2013
Environment

New Maps Aim To Raise Awareness Of Storm Surge Danger

Originally published on Sat June 1, 2013 12:39 pm

Streets flooded in the Staten Island borough of New York after Superstorm Sandy hit in October. The storm caused multiple fatalities, halted mass transit and cut power to more than 6 million homes and businesses.
John Minchillo AP

Hurricane season begins Saturday, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is forecasting an active season, with perhaps seven to 11 hurricanes.

With memories of last year's destruction from Hurricane Sandy still fresh, meteorologists are working on ways to improve how they forecast storms and communicate warnings to the public.

When Sandy was making its way northward in the Atlantic and began to turn toward the East Coast, the National Hurricane Center tried to emphasize the danger that storm surge posed for residents, especially those near New York City.

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4:40pm

Tue May 14, 2013
Shots - Health News

How A Florida Medical School Cares For Communities In Need

Originally published on Tue May 14, 2013 7:15 pm

With community-based health care a central part of its curriculum, Florida International University's medical school turned an RV into a mobile health clinic so that students could treat families in neighborhoods where medical care is scare.
Greg Allen/NPR

If it's a Monday, you can usually find Dr. David Brown parked next to a lake in Miami, spending the day inside a 36-foot-long RV. He's not on vacation.

Brown is chief of family medicine at Florida International University's medical school. The RV is the school's mobile health clinic.

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4:04pm

Mon April 29, 2013
It's All Politics

Rubio Tries To Convince Conservatives He Hasn't Been Duped

Originally published on Mon April 29, 2013 5:48 pm

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., speaks at a Capitol Hill news conference with the Senate's "Gang of Eight," the bipartisan team pushing an immigration overhaul, on April 18.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

In the current debate over revamping the nation's immigration laws, there may be no elected official with more on the line than Florida Sen. Marco Rubio.

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5:13am

Mon April 29, 2013
Around the Nation

States Question What To Do With Surging Tax Revenue

Originally published on Mon April 29, 2013 1:07 pm

Across the country, state budgets are back in the black after years of belt-tightening and spending cuts. From California to Florida, in nearly every state, the economic recovery has produced a surge in tax revenue.

For governors and state legislators, that's produced a new question: how to spend the money.

The past three years have not been easy ones for elected officials. Nearly every state requires them to produce a balanced budget. And with declining revenue from sales, property and income taxes, that has meant big spending cuts.

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2:44am

Fri April 19, 2013
Around the Nation

As Florida Bill Looks To Aid Feral Cats, Opponents Claw Back

Originally published on Fri April 26, 2013 6:59 pm

The Miami-based Cat Network operates a program that traps, neuters and releases feral cats back to their colonies. A bill before the Florida Legislature would offer legal protection to those programs.
Greg Allen NPR

In state legislatures around the country, lawmakers are debating important subjects — education reform, election laws, gun control and abortion. But in Florida, one of the hottest issues to come before the Legislature this term involves cats.

There, lawmakers are considering a contentious bill that would offer legal protection to groups that trap, neuter and return feral cats to their colonies.

An Alternative To Shelters

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5:33am

Sat April 13, 2013
Environment

Now Endangered, Florida's Silver Springs Once Lured Tourists

Originally published on Sat April 13, 2013 5:24 pm

A glass-bottomed boat glides along water in Silver Springs, Fla. The springs, once a major tourist destination, have declined both in volume and in water quality.
Greg Allen NPR

Before Disney World, Silver Springs in Central Florida was for decades one of the state's most popular tourist destinations.

Even if you've never visited Silver Springs, you might have seen it. The 1960s television show Sea Hunt was filmed here, as were countless movies, including Tarzan and Creature From the Black Lagoon.

The crystal clear water of Silver Springs made it invaluable to Hollywood. Guy Marwick, the founder of the Silver River Museum, says it drew more than 1 million visitors a year.

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8:04am

Tue April 2, 2013
Around the Nation

Cuban Dissident Blogger Seeks To Unite Castro's Cuba With Miami's Cuba

Originally published on Tue April 2, 2013 10:33 am

Yoani Sanchez, internationally known dissident blogger from Cuba, listens to a question as she speaks at the Freedom Tower in Miami on Monday.
Joe Skipper Reuters /Landov

For Cuban-Americans, Miami's Freedom Tower is almost a holy place — a former immigration intake center where thousands came in the 1960s after they fled the island's communist rule.

But across the street from the hall, where Cuban dissident blogger Yoani Sanchez spoke Monday, there were protests. A dozen anti-Castro activists repudiated some of Sanchez's past comments, including her support for lifting the long-standing U.S. embargo of Cuba.

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4:27pm

Thu March 21, 2013
Around the Nation

Florida Pitches New Facilities To Clinch Spring Training

Originally published on Thu March 21, 2013 6:00 pm

Baseball fans watch an exhibition spring training game between the Washington Nationals and the New York Mets in Port St. Lucie, Fla. Spring training contributes $35 million to the local economy.
Julio Cortez AP

For baseball fans, spring training is a time for renewed hopes and a reminder that winter is almost over. But for the major league teams and Arizona and Florida communities, spring training is big business. In Florida, 1.5 million fans attend spring training games with an estimated $750 million annual economic impact, and the state is working to keep the teams from fleeing.

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6:05am

Sat March 2, 2013
U.S.

Florida Atlantic Donation Sparks Outrage, But University Doesn't Budge

Originally published on Sat March 2, 2013 11:04 am

Florida Atlantic University says it's standing by its deal to sell naming rights to its new football stadium to a controversial private prison company. The Boca Raton-based GEO Group faces allegations of abuse and neglect at some of its facilities, and there's a growing call on campus for the school to sever its ties.

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3:24am

Fri February 22, 2013
Crisis In The Housing Market

In Miami, A New Condo Boom Revives Hopes Of Housing Recovery

Originally published on Fri February 22, 2013 8:07 am

Brickell CityCentre is a new project that includes retail, offices and two condo towers. In all, some 19 condo towers are going up in downtown Miami, just seven years after the housing market crash.
Greg Allen NPR

Here's a headline that may sound familiar: Miami is in the middle of a condo boom.

Just seven years ago, Miami had a similar surge in condo construction. But it all came crashing down. There was an international banking crisis, and the Florida real estate bubble burst — taking down investors and many developers.

But new towers are once again reshaping the city's skyline.

Peter Zalewski, a real estate consultant with Condo Vultures, says 19 condo towers are now in the works in Miami, with 7,000 total units.

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5:14pm

Thu February 14, 2013
U.S.

Taxpayers Steaming Over Florida Nuclear Plant's Shuttering

Originally published on Thu February 14, 2013 7:15 pm

The Crystal River Nuclear Plant has stood idle since workers cracked the reactor's containment building in 2009. The facility is now slated to close permanently.
Will Vragovic AP

The operator of Florida's Crystal River nuclear plant sent shockwaves through the state when it announced recently that it was shutting down the facility for good.

When nuclear plants have closed elsewhere, locals have cheered. But in Citrus County, it's been more like a death in the family.

At Fat Boy's Bar-B-Q restaurant in Crystal River, owner Bubba Keller says he's worried about what's going to happen to the community. "I mean, things are already tough," Keller says. "If this makes it worse, don't know if I can hang in there."

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3:22am

Tue February 5, 2013
U.S.

One-Way Tickets To Florida: Puerto Ricans Escape Island Woes

Originally published on Tue February 5, 2013 6:09 pm

Miguel Fontanez Sr., the owner and founder of Pioco's Chicken in Kissimmee, Fla., serves customers at his restaurant. He opened the restaurant 11 years ago, and it has become a hub for the area's large Puerto Rican community.
John W. Poole NPR

Puerto Rico's population is dropping. Faced with a deteriorating economy, increased poverty and a swelling crime rate, many citizens are fleeing the island for the U.S. mainland. In a four-part series, Morning Edition explores this phenomenon, and how Puerto Rico's troubles are affecting its people and other Americans in unexpected ways.

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3:13pm

Sun February 3, 2013
Animals

Wood Stork's Endangered Status Is Up In The Air

Originally published on Sun February 3, 2013 6:16 pm

A wood stork soars over its nest in Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary near Fort Myers, Fla., in 2008, as baby wood storks wait in their nest for an adult to bring food.
Peter Andrew Bosch MCT /Landov

The last few years have been especially tough in South Florida for wading birds such as egrets, herons, ibises and wood storks that feed and nest in the region's wetlands.

The problem is there are fewer wetlands, and the last few years have been dry, reducing water levels in critical areas.

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4:28pm

Thu January 10, 2013
It's All Politics

Estimated Costs Drive Debate As Florida Weighs Medicaid Expansion

Originally published on Thu January 10, 2013 6:26 pm

Florida Gov. Rick Scott speaks in Fort Lauderdale in May.
J. Pat Carter AP

Florida and several other states are wrestling with a decision: whether to expand Medicaid.

When the Supreme Court upheld the Affordable Care Act last year, the court said states could opt out of that part of the law. But it's key. It would provide coverage to millions of low-income Americans who currently have no health insurance.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott says he's concerned about how much expanding Medicaid would cost. But others charge the governor is exaggerating.

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3:29am

Fri January 4, 2013
It's All Politics

Outspoken Alan Grayson Gets Another Chance In Congress

Originally published on Fri January 4, 2013 9:24 am

After losing his bid for re-election in 2010, Democrat Alan Grayson of Florida is back in Congress after winning a safer district.
Evan Vucci AP

Among the more than 80 House freshmen who were sworn in this week, there were several who had been there before — including Florida Democrat Alan Grayson.

After starting his first term four years ago, Grayson quickly made a name for himself with biting comments targeting Republicans — like when he said during the health care debate: "If you get sick, America, the Republican health care plan is this: Die quickly."

His national stature didn't prevent him from being defeated in 2010. But now Grayson is back.

'The People United'

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8:20am

Wed December 26, 2012
Politics

After Beating Allen West, House Freshman Faces New Fight

Originally published on Wed December 26, 2012 8:44 am

Rep.-elect Patrick Murphy, D-Fla., speaks during a news conference introducing 37 of the newly elected House Democrats at the U.S. Capitol on Nov. 13.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Of the eight new seats that Democrats picked up in the House of Representatives in November, four of them come from Florida.

Democrats were aided by a big turnout for President Obama, plus new rules that helped erase a Republican advantage in how districts are drawn in the Sunshine State.

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4:36pm

Tue December 4, 2012
It's All Politics

For Tea Party Activists In Florida, The Health Care Battle Goes On

Originally published on Tue December 4, 2012 6:50 pm

President Obama's re-election sent a message to state capitals: The war over the president's health care overhaul is finished.

Even in Florida, where Republican leaders led the legal battle against Obamacare, there's recognition now that the state has to act fast to comply with the new law.

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3:22pm

Sun December 2, 2012
U.S.

Mission Diversify: CIA Begins LGBT Recruiting

Originally published on Sun December 2, 2012 5:06 pm

The CIA is looking to employ a community it historically rejected.
Alex Wong Getty Images

As part of the CIA's efforts to diversify its workforce, the spy agency is reaching out to a group that once was unable to get security clearance — lesbians and gay men.

Earlier this week, CIA officials held a networking event for the Miami gay community sponsored by the Miami-Dade Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce and the CIA.

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