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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Business
3:44 pm
Tue March 12, 2013

Cruise Industry Stays Confidently Afloat Amid Major Accidents

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 4:42 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

If the cruise industry is smarting from some recent PR disasters, it's not letting on. Executives are gathered in Florida this week for Cruise Shipping Miami, a big conference. It's been a month since an engine fire on the Carnival Triumph knocked out the ship's power, leaving it stranded in the Gulf of Mexico. Cable networks seem to carry every moment of the drama, as the ship and more than 3,000 passengers were towed slowly to port.

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Business
3:17 am
Tue March 12, 2013

Cruise Ship Leaders To Discuss Industry's Future

Leaders of several cruise lines are meeting in Miami on Tuesday to discuss the state of the industry. The conference comes after a series of setbacks, including a cruise ship losing power for days in the Gulf of Mexico.

U.S.
4:05 am
Sat March 2, 2013

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

Originally published on Sat March 2, 2013 9:04 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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Around the Nation
3:21 am
Tue February 26, 2013

Unarmed Teen's Murder Still Fuels Gun Debate

Originally published on Tue February 26, 2013 7:44 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

One year ago today, police in Sanford, Florida received a fateful call to their non-emergency line. A man named George Zimmerman was calling to report someone he said was suspicious.

(SOUNDBITE OF PHONE CALL)

GEORGE ZIMMERMAN: This guys looks like he's up to no good, or he's on drugs or something. It's raining, and he's just walking around, looking about.

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

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Crisis In The Housing Market
1:24 am
Fri February 22, 2013

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

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

Originally published on Fri February 22, 2013 6:07 am

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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Around the Nation
3:43 am
Thu February 21, 2013

Fla. Gov. Scott Reverses Medicaid Decision

Originally published on Thu February 21, 2013 4:49 am

Florida Governor Rick Scott announced late Wednesday that he will expand Medicaid to an estimated 900,000 residents. The move is a surprise because the governor has previously been a vocal critic of President Obama's health care overhaul.

Business
4:12 am
Fri February 15, 2013

Carnival's Crippled Ship Expected To Hurt Cruise Business

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 6:40 am

This week's debacle on the Carnival Triumph is a setback that may cost the company as much as $80 million and hurt the industry's image. Carnival says passengers who were on the Triumph the last five days without power were miserable, but at least they were safe. Industry watchers say Carnival generally has handled the mishap well, but that the industry may need to rethink how it deal with events like power outages on floating cities than can carry more than 5,000 people.

U.S.
3:40 pm
Thu February 14, 2013

Taxpayers Steaming Over Florida Nuclear Plant's Shuttering

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

Originally published on Thu February 14, 2013 5:15 pm

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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Around the Nation
3:44 pm
Wed February 13, 2013

Carnival Cruise Passengers On Fourth Day With Limited Power

Originally published on Wed February 13, 2013 7:44 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

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

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish.

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Around the Nation
2:48 pm
Tue February 5, 2013

Supporters Mark Trayvon Martin's 18th Birthday

Originally published on Tue February 5, 2013 4:36 pm

In communities around Florida, vigils and other events marked what would've been Trayvon Martin's 18th birthday on Tuesday. Neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman has been charged in the teen's death and a judge ruled Tuesday that a June trial will go forward as scheduled.

U.S.
1:22 am
Tue February 5, 2013

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

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

Originally published on Tue February 5, 2013 4:09 pm

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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Around the Nation
4:10 pm
Mon February 4, 2013

Gun Control Divides County Sheriffs

President Obama and law enforcement officials meet in January to discuss gun violence. To the left of Obama is Hennepin County, Minn., Sheriff Richard W. Stanek; to the right is Charles H. Ramsey, commissioner of the Philadelphia Police Department.
Rex Features AP

Originally published on Tue February 5, 2013 8:29 am

When President Obama announced new measures to prevent gun violence, one of the groups there to show support was the National Sheriffs' Association. The group represents more than 3,000 county sheriffs across the country.

But not all sheriffs agree with the group's support for what it calls "common-sense steps," like a universal background check for all gun purchasers.

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Animals
1:13 pm
Sun February 3, 2013

Wood Stork's Endangered Status Is Up In The Air

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

Originally published on Sun February 3, 2013 4:16 pm

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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Music News
4:02 am
Sun January 20, 2013

A High School Salsa Band In The Inaugural Parade? 'Of Course!'

The young musicians of Seguro Que Si will perform in this weekend's Inaugural Parade. Left to right: Daniel Chico (bass), Kevin Arguelles (piano), Maxwell Frost (timbales), Christopher Muriel (congas), Niyah Lowell (bongos), Annette Rodriguez (vocal), Sean Fernandez (trumpet), Robby Cruz (trumpet).
Greg Allen NPR

Originally published on Sun January 20, 2013 10:13 am

In the Inaugural Parade following the president's swearing-in on Monday, regimental and high school marching bands will appear alongside groups showcasing the nation's diversity. These include a float representing South Carolina and Georgia's Gullah-Geechee culture, plus Native American groups and a mariachi band from Texas. Bringing the salsa is Seguro Que Si, a high school band from Kissimmee, Fla.

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It's All Politics
2:28 pm
Thu January 10, 2013

Estimated Costs Drive Debate As Florida Weighs Medicaid Expansion

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

Originally published on Thu January 10, 2013 4:26 pm

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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It's All Politics
1:29 am
Fri January 4, 2013

Outspoken Alan Grayson Gets Another Chance In Congress

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

Originally published on Fri January 4, 2013 7:24 am

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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U.S.
2:20 pm
Thu December 27, 2012

Florida Becomes No. 1 In Concealed Weapons Permits

Originally published on Thu December 27, 2012 7:40 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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

After the mass shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, the country renewed a debate over gun control. At the same time, Florida quietly marked a milestone. It became the first state to issue more than a million permits allowing residents to carry concealed weapons. From Miami, NPR's Greg Allen reports.

GREG ALLEN, BYLINE: It's the holiday season, and at American Armory, a gun store in Homestead, Florida, the atmosphere is festive.

(SOUNDBITE OF CROWD)

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Law
3:38 pm
Tue December 11, 2012

Judge: Zimmerman Must Keep Wearing GPS Tracker

Originally published on Tue December 11, 2012 7:34 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

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

George Zimmerman, the former neighborhood watch volunteer who shot 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, has himself become a victim. That was the message today from Zimmerman's lawyers, who were in court asking a judge to loosen the terms of his release on bail. The judge refused.

But as NPR's Greg Allen reports, the hearing gave a preview of some of the arguments expected if the case goes to trial.

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Around the Nation
2:24 pm
Fri December 7, 2012

Death Of Florida Teenager Echoes Trayvon Martin

Originally published on Fri December 7, 2012 9:50 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

In Florida, less than a year after the death of Trayvon Martin, the shooting of another unarmed black teenager is drawing attention to a controversial law. Seventeen-year-old Jordan Davis was killed last month at a Jacksonville gas station following a dispute over loud music. The suspect is in custody. As NPR's Greg Allen reports, Davis' death is again raising questions about what it means to stand your ground.

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The Two-Way
8:21 am
Thu December 6, 2012

VIDEO: Miami's 100-Foot-Long (And Growing) Mechanical Alligator Head

Courtesy of Lloyd Goradesky

Originally published on Thu December 6, 2012 4:25 pm

  • Greg Allen on 'Morning Edition'

(NPR's Greg Allen tells us more about the art fair underway in Miami that he reported about on Morning Edition. And, he sends along a photo and video of a very big alligator.)

People in Miami are seeing some strange sights this week thanks to Art Basel Miami Beach, one of the nation's largest art fairs.

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It's All Politics
2:36 pm
Tue December 4, 2012

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

Originally published on Tue December 4, 2012 4:50 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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Art & Design
2:25 pm
Mon December 3, 2012

Street Art Brings Life To A Miami Neighborhood

Greek artist B. calls his mural "a sea of objects." It was added to Wynwood Walls in 2011.
Greg Allen NPR

Originally published on Mon December 3, 2012 4:08 pm

One of the nation's largest art fairs, Art Basel, opens this week in Miami. But days before the fair launches in Miami Beach, the party had already started across the bridge, in Miami's Wynwood neighborhood.

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U.S.
1:22 pm
Sun December 2, 2012

Mission Diversify: CIA Begins LGBT Recruiting

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

Originally published on Sun December 2, 2012 3:06 pm

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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Architecture
3:44 pm
Tue November 27, 2012

Battle Lines Drawn Over Old 'Miami Herald' Building

Originally published on Tue November 27, 2012 3:55 pm

The Miami Herald's old headquarters on Biscayne Bay have been sold to a developer who wants to tear it down. Historic preservationists are working to stop the demolition, saying the hulking, boxy building is a prime example of Miami modernism architecture from the 50's and 60's. Demolition proponents — which include some prominent architects — say it's a clumsy building with no sense of style and not a "MiMo" design worth saving.

U.S.
3:57 pm
Mon November 26, 2012

Will Florida Pythons Slither To Rest Of The U.S.?

A Burmese python coils around the arm of a hunter during a news conference in 2010 in the Florida Everglades. New research suggests that the pythons won't spread through the American Southeast, as previously believed.
Lynne Sladky AP

Originally published on Mon November 26, 2012 4:42 pm

There are several exotic snake species that have become a problem in the Everglades. But for wildlife managers, the biggest headache is the Burmese python.

Earlier this year, researchers with the U.S. Geological Survey captured the largest Burmese python yet in Everglades National Park. Three USGS staffers had to wrestle the snake out of a plastic crate to measure it. The snake was a 17-foot-7-inch female carrying 87 eggs.

Wildlife managers are working to get a handle on the problem of exotic snakes in South Florida; but the snakes have already made a big impact.

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Election 2012
3:01 pm
Tue November 20, 2012

Tea Party Favorite Allen West Concedes Florida Race

Originally published on Tue November 20, 2012 4:14 pm

Two weeks after votes were cast, Tea Party firebrand Allen West conceded he lost his Florida Congressional race to Democrat Patrick Murphy. He was one of just a few Tea Party activists to be defeated.

It's All Politics
1:09 pm
Fri November 16, 2012

Republican Lock On Florida's Cuban-American Vote May Be Over

American and Cuban flags in the Little Havana neighborhood of Miami.
Shannon Stapleton Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Fri November 16, 2012 6:07 pm

For Republicans ruminating over why their party lost the presidential election, here's something else to digest from the swing state of Florida. Cuban-Americans — long a reliable Republican voting bloc — split almost evenly between Mitt Romney and President Obama, according to at least one group's exit polls.

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Election 2012
3:09 pm
Fri November 9, 2012

Palm Beach County Still Counting Votes In Florida

Originally published on Fri November 16, 2012 10:17 am

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

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

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block.

One lone county in Florida is still tallying ballots. It's Palm Beach County. Yes, that Palm Beach County, which was central to the presidential recount in 2000.

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It's All Politics
2:25 pm
Thu November 8, 2012

Florida's Most Populous County Finishes Vote Count

A Miami-Dade Elections Department employee tallies absentee ballot reports in Doral, Fla., on Thursday.
Alan Diaz AP

Originally published on Thu November 8, 2012 2:53 pm

It only took two extra days, but Florida's Miami-Dade County has finished counting votes in the presidential election.

Supervisor of Elections Penelope Townsley said Thursday she was pleased to announce that the state's most populous county, with more than 2.5 million people, was "the first of the large counties to complete its tabulation process."

Townsley was referring to three other large counties — Broward (population 1.8 million), Palm Beach (population 1.3 million) and Duval (population 870,000) — that were still tallying absentee ballots.

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Election 2012
2:54 pm
Wed November 7, 2012

Florida Still Tallying Ballots With Obama In The Lead

Originally published on Wed November 7, 2012 3:50 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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