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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Environment
12:56 am
Thu October 10, 2013

Whatever Happened To The Deal To Save The Everglades?

Mechanical harvesters cut sugar cane on U.S. Sugar Corp. land in Clewiston, Fla., in 2008, the same year the state struck a deal to buy most of the company's Everglades holdings.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Thu October 10, 2013 9:49 am

South of Florida's Lake Okeechobee, hundreds of thousands of acres of sugar cane thrive in the heart of one of the world's largest wetlands. The Everglades stretches from the tip of the peninsula to central Florida, north of Lake Okeechobee.

"The Everglades actually begins at Shingle Creek, outside of Orlando," says Jonathan Ullman of the Sierra Club.

That's nearly 200 miles north of the agricultural land that Ullman and other environmentalists say is crucial to state and federal efforts to restore the wetlands area to a healthy ecosystem.

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Around the Nation
3:37 pm
Wed October 9, 2013

After First Flawed Attempt, Florida Tries Voter Roll Restrictions Again

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

You're listening to ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News.

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Shots - Health News
3:21 pm
Tue October 1, 2013

In Florida, Insurer And Nonprofits Work On Enrollment

Nonprofits are looking to help people sign up for insurance coverage in Florida.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue October 1, 2013 5:05 pm

Florida Gov. Rick Scott and other Republican leaders have worked to block the Affordable Care Act since it was first proposed.

As Tuesday's opening of enrollment approached, Florida's Health Department said it wouldn't allow navigators and others to use its offices to educate and counsel people on the new law.

But others are eager to help. "We're ready to serve our community," says Efraim Monzon, director of a Florida Blue retail center in Miami. "We've been ready since 2010 when we heard it was coming."

Read more
Your Money
3:17 pm
Fri September 27, 2013

Nixed Flood Insurance Subsidy Drowns Coastal Home Values

In Florida, Louisiana, New York and other coastal states, many homeowners are in shock at new flood insurance rates that are rapidly approaching. After Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy left the National Flood Insurance Program $24 billion in the red, Congress revamped the program--phasing out subsidies. One group especially upset are new homeowners--people who bought a property and are now seeing their flood insurance costs skyrocket, making the property no longer affordable.

Environment
1:42 am
Thu September 26, 2013

With Murky Water And Manatee Deaths, Lagoon Languishes

Biologists Laura Herren and Brian Lapointe bag red sea grass at Shorty's Pocket, a site in the Indian River lagoon. Manatees have died from eating the toxic macro algae.
Courtesy Brian Cousin FAU Harbor Branch

Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 3:06 am

Something is wrong in Florida's Indian River Lagoon.

Over the past year, record numbers of dolphins, manatees and pelicans have turned up dead in the 150-mile-long estuary that runs along Florida's Atlantic Coast. Bouts of algal blooms have flourished in the waters. All the signs point to an ecosystem that is seriously out of balance. The crisis has mobilized scientists, residents and elected officials in Florida.

An Ailing Lagoon

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Shots - Health News
1:18 am
Wed September 18, 2013

Florida Makes Spreading Word On Health Care Law A Challenge

Florida Gov. Rick Scott has questioned efforts to use federally funded navigators to help people enroll for insurance through the Affordable Care Act.
John Raoux AP

Originally published on Wed September 18, 2013 11:01 am

At a community center named for Florida civil rights pioneer Carrie Meek, a few dozen members of Miami's National Church of God gathered over the weekend for a tea party — and to hear from a special guest, Monica Rodriguez of Enroll America.

The organization is working to spread the word about the Affordable Care Act, the federal law that will let people without health insurance shop for coverage starting Oct. 1.

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Shots - Health News
3:19 pm
Thu September 12, 2013

Florida Officials Swat At Mosquitoes With Dengue Fever

In 2010, Florida health officials looked for mosquito larvae in vehicle tires where water had collected. As many as 15 cases have been found in Stuart this year.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Fri September 13, 2013 4:29 pm

Public health officials in Florida are once again scrambling to contain an outbreak of dengue fever, a disease spread by mosquitoes.

Until 2009, when it surfaced in Key West, the tropical disease hadn't been seen in Florida in more than 70 years.

Now there are concerns dengue may establish a foothold in the state.

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Around the Nation
3:15 am
Tue September 3, 2013

Graves To Be Exhumed At Fla. Reform School

Originally published on Tue September 3, 2013 8:54 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning I'm Renee Montagne.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep.

Researchers are working to solve a mystery surrounding dozens of unmarked graves at North Florida's Dozier School for Boys. The state-run reform school operated for more than a century until just two years ago. And for much of that time, the school was notorious for beatings and physical abuse. Now, researchers are asking who is buried there, and how they died. NPR's Greg Allen reports from Marianna, Fla.

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Politics
5:57 am
Sat August 31, 2013

Conservatives Huddle At Strategy Meeting

Originally published on Sat August 31, 2013 9:59 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

While many Americans take time off this weekend, a group of conservative activists are meeting in Florida. Americans for Prosperity, a group that was founded by David and Charles Koch, is holding its annual summit in Orlando. That gathering includes several rising stars among conservatives - Florida Senator Marco Rubio, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal and Texas Senator Ted Cruz. But in terms of issues, NPR's Greg Allen reports, one seems to stand above all - stopping Obamacare.

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Law
2:59 am
Wed August 28, 2013

Florida Asked To Reimburse George Zimmerman For Court Costs

Originally published on Wed August 28, 2013 10:33 am

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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Around the Nation
3:29 pm
Tue August 27, 2013

Miami's Decrepit Sewage System In Desperate Need Of Repair

Originally published on Tue August 27, 2013 4:32 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block.

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Shots - Health News
4:03 pm
Tue August 20, 2013

Fla. Balks At Insurance Navigators As Obamacare Deadline Nears

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

Originally published on Tue August 20, 2013 8:02 pm

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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Latin America
3:21 am
Wed August 14, 2013

Top Foreign Real Estate Buyers In Miami Are Brazilians

Originally published on Wed August 14, 2013 7:16 am

Transcript

GREG ALLEN, BYLINE: I'm Greg Allen, in Miami. To gauge the impact of Brazilians here, you only need to go downtown and look up.

(SOUNDBITE OF MACHINERY)

ALLEN: Just a few years after the housing downturn, in Miami, once again, cranes and construction crews are hard at work building high-rise condominiums. Thousands of units are going up all over town, and many are being built for Brazilians.

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Education
2:08 pm
Tue August 6, 2013

Florida To Reopen Dark Chapter In State's History

Originally published on Tue August 6, 2013 5:25 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Florida officials today voted to reopen a dark chapter in the state's history. Governor Rick Scott and his cabinet voted to allow researchers to exhume some 90 unmarked graves at a state-run reform school. The Dozier School for Boys was closed two years ago, but over its 100-year history, it was notorious for physical abuse. As NPR's Greg Allen reports from Miami, the hope is that today's decision will unearth answers about the children who died there and why.

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U.S.
1:12 am
Wed July 31, 2013

In Florida, A Clash Over Exhuming Bodies At Reform School

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

Originally published on Wed July 31, 2013 10:32 am

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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Around the Nation
1:00 am
Mon July 29, 2013

Miami Beach Preservationists Battle Glitterati Over Homes

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

Originally published on Mon July 29, 2013 10:35 am

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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Around the Nation
2:59 pm
Fri July 26, 2013

Trayvon Martin's Mother Finds New Role As An Activist

Originally published on Mon July 29, 2013 10:01 am

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

The mother of Trayvon Martin has spoken widely about the killing of her son. And today, she moved from the role of grieving parent to civil rights advocate. In Philadelphia, Sybrina Fulton addressed the nation's oldest civil rights group, the National Urban League. She called on members to join her in making sure what happened to her son doesn't happen to other children. NPR's Greg Allen has this report.

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Law
4:32 pm
Fri July 19, 2013

Florida Governor Stands Firm On 'Stand Your Ground' Law

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

Originally published on Fri July 19, 2013 6:30 pm

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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News
6:04 am
Sun July 14, 2013

Zimmerman Not Guilty On All Charges

Originally published on Sun July 14, 2013 10:12 am

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION, from NPR News, I'm Rachel Martin. It took more than 16 hours of deliberations but last night, a jury in Sanford, Fla., pronounced George Zimmerman not guilty. Zimmerman, the neighborhood watch volunteer who killed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin last year, faced two charges - second-degree murder and manslaughter. The jury's verdict came nearly 17 months after that February night when Zimmerman and Martin had a confrontation that ended with the teenager dead from a single, fatal gunshot.

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News
5:16 am
Sat July 13, 2013

Zimmerman Jury Deliberates

Originally published on Sat July 13, 2013 11:22 am

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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Law
3:05 pm
Fri July 12, 2013

Jury Begins Deliberations In George Zimmerman Case

Originally published on Fri July 12, 2013 4:19 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Robert Siegel.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish. A jury in Sanford, Florida is beginning deliberations in the electric and closely watched trial of George Zimmerman. Zimmerman is charged with second degree murder and manslaughter in the killing of unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin. He's pleaded not guilty. He said he acted in self defense. We have two reports now on the trial and preparations outside the courtroom.

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Law
2:53 pm
Thu July 11, 2013

George Zimmerman Trial Winds Down As Closing Arguments Begin

Originally published on Thu July 11, 2013 3:55 pm

The closing arguments in the murder trial of George Zimmerman have begun. Zimmerman is accused of shooting Florida teenager Trayvon Martin.

Law
2:52 pm
Wed July 10, 2013

Defense Rests Its Case In George Zimmerman Trial

Originally published on Wed July 10, 2013 3:29 pm

The trial of George Zimmerman is nearing its end — the defense rested its case on Wednesday after calling 18 witnesses. Zimmerman will not testify.

Law
3:03 am
Thu July 4, 2013

Zimmerman Trial Takes July 4 Off, Case Resumes Friday

Originally published on Thu July 4, 2013 7:48 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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Law
2:17 pm
Fri June 28, 2013

At Trial, Witness Says Zimmerman Acted In Self-Defense

Originally published on Fri June 28, 2013 7:22 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

It's ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Audie Cornish.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel. Today, in the trial of George Zimmerman, a key witness bolstered Zimmerman's claim that he acted in self-defense when he killed teenager Trayvon Martin. The witness was a neighbor in the Sanford, Florida community where Zimmerman encountered Martin and he was the only person to see them fight before Zimmerman fired the gunshot that ended Martin's life.

Here's NPR's Greg Allen.

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Law
2:59 pm
Thu June 27, 2013

Prosecution's Star Witness Cross-Examined In Zimmerman Case

Originally published on Thu June 27, 2013 3:44 pm

Testimony resumed Thursday in the George Zimmerman trial. One of the state's key witnesses, Rachel Jeantel, was back on the stand for more grueling cross-examination by the defense. She was on the phone with Trayvon Martin just before Zimmerman shot and killed the 17-year-old.

Science
6:00 pm
Wed June 26, 2013

New Bugs In Florida Stymie Researchers, Threaten Crops

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

Originally published on Thu June 27, 2013 3:34 am

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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Law
2:46 am
Tue June 25, 2013

Prosecutors Begin Their Case Against Trayvon Martin's Killer

Originally published on Tue June 25, 2013 9:10 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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Law
2:30 am
Mon June 10, 2013

Jury Selection To Begin In Trayvon Martin Case

Originally published on Mon June 10, 2013 5:08 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

In Sanford, Florida, jury selection begins today in the murder trial of George Zimmerman. The neighborhood watch volunteer is charged with the shooting death of a 17-year-old, Trayvon Martin, last year. Police, at first, declined to charge Zimmerman because of Florida's Stand-Your-Ground law. It gives immunity to people who use deadly force in self defense.

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Environment
4:39 am
Sat June 1, 2013

New Maps Aim To Raise Awareness Of Storm Surge Danger

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

Originally published on Sat June 1, 2013 10:39 am

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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