People & Places

  • Best Lobbyist

    Miguel Diaz de la Portilla

    He had all the attributes of a winning mayoral candidate: handsome, smart, and connected, as the middle brother of a Cuban-American political oligarchy. And as a reformer on the county commission who introduced legislation creating the Miami-Dade Inspector General's Office, Miguel Diaz de la Portilla had the credentials to clean up county hall. But it didn't work out for him… More >>
  • Best Local Boy Made Good

    Robert Platshorn

    After serving nearly three decades in federal prison for smuggling pot into Miami, Robert Platshorn would have been forgiven for spending the rest of his free days in quiet solitude. But the 69-year-old former leader of the Black Tuna Gang — which the DEA dubbed his '70s-era stoner collective of pot importers — has instead become one of the nation's… More >>
  • Best Local Girl Made Good

    Genesis Rodriguez

    Your abuelita knew about Genesis Rodríguez long before you knew about her. The Miami-born-and-raised daughter of Venezuelan heartthrob singer José Luis "El Puma" Rodríguez, Genesis has enjoyed an acting career that had its, um, genesis in hammy telenovelas. Think shows such as Dame Chocolate, Prisionera, and Doña Bárbara, in which the male characters are all named Fernando and wear eye… More >>
  • Best Local Boy Gone Bad

    Warren Sapp

    Like a demonic version of Santa Claus, Warren Sapp tore around offensive tackles to deliver packages of hurt to opposing quarterbacks for 13 seasons in the NFL. But long before he was one of the most feared men in the pros, he was a football phenom from a shack in Plymouth, Florida. As a linebacker for Apopka High School, Sapp… More >>
  • Best Local Girl Gone Bad

    Brianna Perry

    Miami newest major-label rap act, recent Atlantic Records signee Brianna Perry (formerly known as Lil Brianna) made her recorded debut on Trina's "Kandi" a decade ago when she was just 9 years old. Back then, she was a girlie Lil Bow Wow to Trina's Snoop, a precocious kid rhyming bubblegum raps over New Edition's "Candy Girl." Unsurprisingly, for someone who… More >>
  • Best Politician

    State Sen. Larcenia Bullard

    As her mother suffered a painful, prolonged death from Alzheimer's, longtime Miami-Dade politician Larcenia Bullard began researching alternative treatments that might help. What she learned would forever change the legacy of a moderate Democrat's whiling away her final term in the state's Republican-dominated Senate. The more Bullard read, the more she became convinced that a simple plant, grown organically and… More >>
  • Best Political Miscalculation

    Ozzie Hearts Fidel

    For years, Ozzie Guillen has gotten away with saying drivel simply because he reminds everyone of their crazy uncle who made everyone laugh until he drank himself to death in his trailer. He has called journalists homophobic names, labeled Sean Penn a Chávez-loving loser, and even dubbed himself the MLB version of Charlie Sheen, "minus the drugs and the prostitutes."… More >>
  • Best Citizen

    Richard "Kudo" Couto

    A few years ago, local real estate agent Richard Couto adopted a Rambo-esque nickname: "Kudo." He began driving his Range Rover into what's known as the C-9 Basin, an unincorporated area of Northwest Miami-Dade County notorious for unlicensed slaughterhouses and a horse meat black market. He filmed undercover video of animals being slaughtered. He broke into the farms at night… More >>
  • Best Power Couple

    Rosa and Carlos de la Cruz

    Getting a museum named in your honor? Apparently that just takes a big check. (Ask Jorge Perez.) Turning your own private art collection into an institution that rivals those of many museums? That takes true cultural power. Rosa and Carlos de la Cruz met in Havana, Cuba, as teenagers and have been together ever since (something quite powerful in its… More >>
  • Best Flack

    Lisa Palley

    Shows like Mad Men and Magic City help us realize that some aspects of life were better back in the day. Miami's press flack extraordinaire, Lisa Palley, does the same. She doesn't rely solely on emailing press releases en masse to everyone on her contact list; Palley actually addresses her emails to the individuals with whom she is trying to… More >>
  • Best Quote

    "We don't care if nobody comes. We'll play in front of nobody, and we'll have all the money."

    We like our city's characters to be as cartoonish as possible. We enjoy pretending that we live in a Marvel Comics universe. Turn to this year's winner for Best Citizen, and you'll find a gun-toting, rich playboy who stalks nefarious animal abusers. How Gotham-esque is that? So God bless the Miami Marlins front office for being as gleefully villainous as… More >>
  • Best Chutzpah

    David Rivera

    David Rivera either has balls the size of snow globes or he lacks the part of the human brain that allows a man to take responsibility for his actions. Until recently, Rivera was under investigation by three separate agencies: the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Internal Revenue Service. He was duly named one… More >>
  • Best Criminal Conviction

    Allen Stanford

    In Ponzistan — as South Florida will someday be rechristened in the more honest history books — it takes something extra to stand out. Pyramid schemes are a dime a dozen; to get your face on Mount Ponzimore, you've got to bring it. Nevin Shapiro took down a university's sports program. Scott Rothstein demolished Broward's political system. And Allen Stanford?… More >>