The unsung hero of the Miami Herald's Pulitzer Prize for investigative reporting: Stephanie Lydecker.
Sure, you could name deputy city editor Judy Miller. Or maybe reporters Joe Tanfani, Manny Garcia, Andres Viglucci, or Frances Robles. Their performances were superb by any measure.
But don't forget Lydecker, who once worked as an aide to Miami Mayor Joe Carollo. Lydecker, now a reporter for WAMI-TV (Channel 69), has told New Times she tipped the Herald on perhaps the most shocking disclosure of the investigation: that Manuel Yip, a restaurant owner, voted in the Magic City's mayoral contest -- four years after dying.
Riptide's favorite Herald fact of the week, courtesy of the New York Times: Tony Ridder, CEO of the Miami daily's parent corporation, Knight Ridder, received a $300,000 relocation bonus when he moved his company's headquarters to San Jose this past year. He also got $274,163 to pay tax on the bonus, and $25,000 for expenses. "A $600,000 handout," one consultant comments, according to the Times.
StreetSmarts is out on the street. And it may soon be defunct.
The magazine, which deals with homeless issues, is sold and delivered by the homeless. Now it must move from Camillus House, where it has been headquartered for months, says Dr. Joe Greer, medical director of Camillus Health Concern.
Greer says Camillus will help the mag find a new home. Publisher Carolyn Blair says she couldn't meet with Greer. Everything is already moved out. "It looks like we are going to have to take a break [in producing the paper]," she adds. By the way, Blair says she is leaving town for a few months. Not so smart, it seems to Riptide.
Still more than a year away from the election to fill the seat of departing Republican Florida Sen. Connie Mack, the weirdness is already here.
With former spaceman and Florida Insurance Commissioner Bill Nelson leading the pack, an ugly rumor spread through Tallahassee recently: The Republicans were courting State Rep. Willie Logan, an Opa-locka Democrat, to change parties and carry their banner. Logan created quite a stir after Democrats ousted him as the party's speaker designate last year.
Nelson spread the rumor so Republicans would appear desperate, some in the capitol say. Both Logan and the Nelson camp deny it.
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The other interesting candidate: Republican U.S. Rep. Bill McCollum of Altamonte Springs, who made a monkey of himself as a House prosecutor in Bill Clinton's impeachment trial.
Things are shaking up at the Daily Business Review. Executive editor Jay Ducassi is out after about a year. "Professional differences," according to the staff. "Sometimes things just don't work out," adds chairman and editor-in-chief Ed Wasserman. Managing editor Eva Rodriguez is leaving, too. She will become executive editor of Legal Times in Washington. The new Biz Review editor: Jacqueline Bueno. Ducassi, a former Herald assistant city editor, may be headed back to his old stomping ground.
As told to Chuck Strouse
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