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.



Sat September 24, 2011
It's All Politics

In Upset, Herman Cain Comes Out On Top Of Florida Straw Poll

Originally published on Sun September 25, 2011 1:58 am

Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain speaks before Florida's straw poll at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando on Saturday. Cain won the straw poll with 37 percent of the vote.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Former Godfather's Pizza CEO Herman Cain pulled off an upset Saturday in the Florida straw poll: He took 37 percent of the 2,657 votes cast, easily beating Texas Gov. Rick Perry and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.

Perry came in second with 15 percent of the vote; and Romney took third, with 14 percent.

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Fri September 2, 2011
Mitt Romney

In Florida, Romney Looks To Outshine His Rivals

Everyone likes to be loved, and when campaign season comes around, Florida gets more than its share of adoration.

"This is just a state that's like the whole country," said Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney. "I love Florida, love being here, love the people of this state, in part because you understand what makes America America."

So far, Florida is returning his affection. He leads Texas Gov. Rick Perry and other Republican candidates in the polls here, in part because he has been here a lot and built a good organization.

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Sat August 27, 2011
Around the Nation

Hurricane Irene Crashes Into East Coast

Originally published on Sat August 27, 2011 10:53 am


SCOTT SIMON, host: This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. Hurricane Irene has arrived. The storm has already struck parts of North Carolina. Some 200,000 people there are without power. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano urged caution as Irene moves up the East Coast.

Secretary JANET NAPOLITANO (HOMELAND SECURITY): Irene remains a large and dangerous storm. People need to take it seriously, people need to be prepared.

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Thu August 25, 2011

Puerto Rican Governor Faces Opposition To Pipeline

Demonstrators march during a May 1 protest against the proposed construction of a 92-mile gas pipeline in Adjuntas, Puerto Rico. Puerto Rico Gov. Luis Fortuno has made the project a central goal of his administration, despite protest from communities affected.
Ricardo Alcaraz AP

If you think your monthly electric bills are high, be thankful you don't live in Puerto Rico. An island where nearly all energy sources must be imported, the U.S. territory has residential power costs that are double those on the mainland.

To help bring down the cost of energy, Puerto Rico's governor is pushing an ambitious plan to build a 92-mile-long natural gas pipeline.

But that plan has run into significant opposition in Puerto Rico and in Congress.

Homes In The Pipeline's Path

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Thu August 4, 2011
America's Mayors: Governing In Tough Times

In Miami-Dade, Economic Upheaval Ushers In Change

Carlos Gimenez, shown at a cafe earlier this year on Election Day, won a recall election that was part of a national wave of voter anger over taxes.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Part 6 of a 6-part series

The economic upheaval of the past several years has had a big impact on the nation's politics — from the president down to the precinct level.

In Florida's Miami-Dade County, it's changed the whole tone of local government.

Carlos Gimenez has been a fixture here for many years — as a member of the Board of County Commissioners, and before that as city manager and fire chief in the City of Miami.

But now he suddenly finds himself in a new job.

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Mon July 25, 2011

Florida Fossil Hunter Gets Credit For Big Find

Originally published on Tue July 26, 2011 1:19 pm

James Kennedy, an amateur collector, found this fossilized bone with a mammoth or mastodon engraving in Vero Beach, Fla. It has been identified as one of the oldest pieces of prehistoric art in the Western Hemisphere
Chip Clark Journal of Archaeological Science

It's one of the most significant pieces of prehistoric art ever found in North America — a carving of a mammoth or mastodon on a piece of fossilized bone dating back to the Ice Age. An amateur fossil hunter found it several years ago in Vero Beach, Florida. Now, after three years of study, a team of researchers say they believe it's authentic.

Historic Find Sat In Box Under Sink

James Kennedy is quick to tell you, he doesn't know all that much about archaeology — or prehistoric art.

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Thu July 21, 2011

On Location: The Central Florida Of 'The Yearling'

Claude Jarman, Jr., at age 11, holding a fawn on the set of The Yearling in 1946.
Martha Holmes Time & Life Pictures/Getty Image

When Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings published her novel The Yearling in 1938, it was an almost instant success, winning her a legion of readers as well as the Pulitzer Prize. MGM bought the film rights to the movie, and its executives agreed with Rawlings that the movie had to be filmed on location — in a densely wooded and sparsely populated part of Florida known as the "Big Scrub."

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Tue July 19, 2011

At 61, Nyad Resurfaces For Cuba To Key West Swim

Diana Nyad is seen here speaking with one of her staff prior to a training swim on July 5, off the coast of Key West, Fla.
Les Neuhaus for NPR

More than 30 years after her last big swim, Diana Nyad is back in the water. Nyad, a former commentator for NPR's Morning Edition, became well-known in the 1970s for her swim around Manhattan Island and, a few years later, for swimming from the Bahamas to Florida.

Now, at age 61, she'll soon be attempting a 103-mile swim from Cuba to Key West. She's been training relentlessly — with 9-hour, 15-hour, even a 24-hour swim.

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Thu July 7, 2011

End Of Shuttle Program Leaves Thousands Jobless

Kim Cannaday shows off a citation he recently received for outstanding work on the shuttle. Cannaday, along with thousands of other who worked on the shuttle, were laid off.
Greg Allen NPR

For thousands of people in Florida, the last launch of the space shuttle is not just the end of an era, it's also the end of a career. Nearly 8,000 men and women who worked on the space shuttle have been laid off — a blow to an area where unemployment is well above the national average.

But even as the shuttle ends, many on the Space Coast are optimistic about the region's future.

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Sat June 11, 2011

Fla.'s Unpopular Governor Could Hinder GOP In 2012

After signing a Florida budget that cuts billions, Republican Gov. Rick Scott has seen his approval rating drop.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

In his first six months as Florida's governor, Republican Rick Scott has had a major impact on the state.

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Fri June 10, 2011

Tropical Disease Buzzes Back Into U.S.

Originally published on Tue August 7, 2012 3:28 pm

Lawrence Smart of Miami-Dade Mosquito Control looks for mosquito larvae in vehicle tires where water has collected, July 2010.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Tropical diseases like dengue fever sound as if they belong in faraway places. But in the past several years, some have begun showing up in the continental U.S.

Now in Key West, Fla., public health officials are combating a scourge they thought they'd eradicated seven decades ago.

Dengue Back After Long Absence

Until recently, a locally contracted case of dengue fever had not been seen in Florida since 1934. That suddenly changed in 2009, when doctors in Key West began seeing it in people who had not traveled outside the area.

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Mon May 30, 2011

Finding New Uses For Troubled Golf Courses In Florida

Dozens of golf courses have closed in Florida in recent years, leaving communities with a dilemma: what to do with the vacant land? Some have been turned into parks, some have been developed and some towns have begun operating the courses themselves.


Wed May 18, 2011

Flooding In Louisiana's Great Basin: A Good Thing?

Zeth Rogers walks through the flooding Atchafalaya River in Simmesport, La. The Army Corps of Engineers opened another bay on the Morganza Spillway Wednesday — diverting more water off the Mississippi through the bayous and rivers of the Atchafalaya Basin.
Mario Tama Getty Images

The Army Corps of Engineers opened another bay on the Morganza Spillway Wednesday — diverting more water off the Mississippi through the bayous and rivers of Louisiana's Atchafalaya Basin.

The Corps says it will divert as much water as necessary to keep the Mississippi no higher than 45 feet as it passes through Baton Rouge.

But some of that water might actually be welcome.

'We Need Good Water'

Few people pay closer attention to water conditions in the Atchafalaya Basin than those who make their living catching crawfish.

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Tue May 17, 2011
Around the Nation

For Bayou Residents, Floods Are A Fact Of Life

By opening the Morganza floodway, the Army Corps of Engineers is sending Mississippi water through communities that thousands call home. But, even as they're forced to evacuate, few are blaming the Corps. Those who live along Louisiana's bayous aren't happy about having to fight the river, but say it's something they've grown up with and which they take very seriously.


Mon May 16, 2011
Around the Nation

St. Landry Parish Orders Mandatory Evacuations

Over the weekend, the Army Corps of Engineers began opening gates of the Morganza Spillway — a structure that hadn't been opened in nearly 40 years. After the spillway was opened in Louisiana, mandatory evacuations were ordered for areas of St. Landry Parish.


Mon May 9, 2011

Army Corps Makes Tough Calls With Floods

To handle all the water flowing down the Mississippi River, the Army Corps of Engineers is opening the floodgates on a spillway, north of New Orleans.

Opening the Bonnet Carre spillway diverts some of the floodwaters into Lake Pontchartrain and from there to the Gulf of Mexico. But nearly every flood control action taken by the Corps is not without controversy.

Winners And Losers

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Sat May 7, 2011
Around the Nation

Florida Bill Could Muzzle Doctors On Gun Safety

Florida Gov. Rick Scott is expected to sign a bill that will make the state the first in the nation to prohibit doctors from asking patients if they own guns. The bill is aimed particularly at pediatricians, who routinely ask new parents if they have guns at home and if they're stored safely.

Pediatricians say it's about preventing accidental injuries. Gun rights advocates say the doctors have a political agenda.

An Invasion Of Privacy?

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Tue May 3, 2011

Florida Budget Woes Mean Environmental Cuts

Florida's legislature wraps up its annual budget session this week. Like other states with tight budgets, Florida is setting new spending priorities. Environmental protection is one area that's seeing big cuts.

Tough Choices

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Wed April 27, 2011

Rep. Webster Defends GOP Plan To Change Medicare

Florida freshman Rep. Daniel Webster bucked the Tea Party line recently and voted to support the House spending deal pushed by Speaker John Boehner. Days later, the Republican also voted to support a GOP plan to privatize Medicare — an issue of special interest to Florida seniors.


Fri April 22, 2011

Torture Trial Starts For Salvadoran In Florida

In a courtroom in Orlando, Fla., Friday, an immigration hearing resumes that involves a former top Salvadoran military official. Gen. Eugenio Vides Casanova faces possible deportation. He's charged with participating in torture and human rights abuses in El Salvador nearly 30 years ago.


Thu April 21, 2011

Fla. GOP Pushes Controversial Voting Law Changes

It's still a year and a half until the presidential election, but members of Florida's Legislature are already jockeying over who will be able to vote and how.

Republicans — who control both Florida's House and Senate — are sponsoring bills that would restrict the ability of third-party groups to conduct voter registration drives. Another measure would slash the number of days allotted for early voting.

Democrats and independent voter groups say it's all about politics.

Early Voting Aids Democrats

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Mon April 18, 2011

A Year After Deepwater, Florida Sees A Comeback

If it's April in Panama City, Fla., it must be spring break.

Here and in other beach towns along Florida's panhandle, hotel and restaurant owners are smiling once again, a year after the Deepwater Horizon drilling-rig blast and oil spill. The crowds appear to be coming back.

And that's quite a difference over last year, says Dan Rowe, the head of the Panama City Beach Convention and Visitors Bureau.

"It was a very stressful summer," Rowe says.

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Sun April 17, 2011
Around the Nation

Bay Of Pigs Anniversary Marked By Miami's Cubans

While Cubans in Havana marked the 50th anniversary of the Bay of Pigs invasion with parades and marches, there were commemorations of a different sort in Miami, home to a large Cuban community.


Thu April 14, 2011

Public Employees Feel The Heat In The Sunshine State

As in Wisconsin, Ohio and other states, Florida's public employees and their unions are on the defensive.

Republican Gov. Rick Scott has proposed a budget that cuts thousands of public jobs and requires workers to contribute part of their salaries to their pensions.

Plus, the Republican-controlled Legislature is close to adopting a measure that directly targets public employee unions.

Read more