Christine DiMattei

Anchor/Reporter

Years ago, after racking her brains trying to find a fun, engaging, creative nighttime gig to subsidize her acting habit, Chris decided to ride her commercial voiceover experience into the fast-paced world of radio broadcasting. She started out with traffic reporting, moved on to news . . . and never looked back. Since then, Chris has worked in newsrooms throughout South Florida, producing stories for radio broadcasts and the web.

In her other life, she has been married to 12 husbands (including a not-so-wild boar and a garden slug), given birth to 15 children, died four times, twice taken vows as a nun and once been abducted by pirates in the Caribbean. And all this by doing English language dubbing for dozens of foreign films, soap operas and cartoons.  Both lives, she says, have been "a most excellent adventure."

Ways to Connect

Miami Beach Police Department

As law enforcement agencies try to piece together  what happened Sunday morning at a gay nightclub in Orlando, when at least 50 people were gunned down, many in South Florida wonder about security and how to protect themselves and those they love from similar attacks. 

  "Every time there is a pride event, there is that fear that exists, especially since we have seen the passage of marriage equality," says Cindy Brown, Miami-Dade development officer for Equality Florida, the largest LGBTQ rights advocacy group in the state. 

 

Colorado State University

    

The 2016 Atlantic hurricane season is here and for the first time in decades South Florida will have to get through it without a man who was a pioneer in hurricane research. Dr. Bill Gray of Colorado State University (CSU) died in April. He's perhaps best known for his data-driven seasonal hurricane forecasts, which have been used for over 30 years.

WLRN talked to Dr. Phil Klotzbach, who started out as Dr. Gray's protegé and eventually became the other half of CSU’s hurricane forecast dynamic duo.

Logan Fazio

On a scorcher of a day at the beach, there's almost nothing like reaching into your cooler or a beach bag and taking a swig out of an ice cold water bottle.

But if they're plastic, all those little bottles add up.

It's estimated that 60 million plastic bottles are used in the United States every day, with many of them going unrecycled and ending up in landfills and in the ocean. But in Miami-Dade, a non-profit is enlisting the help of some old-fashioned technology in the fight against plastic waste: the water fountain.

Samuel Goldwyn Films

In 1959, there was a certain sport in Cuba that the newly triumphant Castro regime declared "elitist" and "dangerous."

Consequently, car racing was outlawed.

But now a new documentary examines Cuba's underground auto racing culture and the renaissance of the forbidden sport.

“Havana Motor Club,” opening April 8 at Miami Beach’s O Cinema, follows the attempts of a group of racing fans trying to organize the first government-sanctioned race in Cuba in more than 50 years.

Miami Light Project

Have you got a great idea that could change the face of arts in South Florida?

Then it's time to submit it to the Knight Arts Challenge MiamiThe yearly challenge looks for the best and most innovative ideas aimed at bringing South Florida residents together through the arts. Winners will share $2.5 million dollars in grants. 

There are only three rules for submissions:

H. Tookes

New cases of the virus that causes AIDS are becoming less frequent throughout the United States.

But not in Florida.

Statewide, HIV infections have been increasing in recent years, with Miami-Dade and Broward counties topping the list. But a new law might help stem the tide of those new cases. For the first time, Florida has a needle-exchange program for intravenous drug users.

Saeed Adyani/Netflix

For the fourth year in a row, the Florida Legislature has adjourned and left the state without a tax incentive plan for the film and television industry.

During Session 2016, there was more urgency from film industry advocates than in previous years -- because the state's incentive program sunsets on July 1. Incentive funds that were supposed to have lasted until this year were drained quickly by many high-budget film and TV projects. 

Michele Hillery, president of nonprofit entertainment association Film Florida, says she's disappointed in the Legislature's inaction.

Tim Chapman- Miami Herald Staff

The news that radioactive material has been leaking from Florida Power & Light’s Turkey Point nuclear power plant into Biscayne Bay has many South Floridians worried. Apparently, they're concerned enough that Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez, at a recent county commission meeting, stated: “This is not Flint, Michigan. Our drinking water is completely safe.”

Patrick Farrell

On Jan. 12, 2010, former Associated Press reporter Jonathan Katz was the only full-time American correspondent in Haiti when the earthquake hit. The massive quake left hundreds of thousands of people dead and more than a million homeless.

In the immediate aftermath of the disaster, foreign aid was pledged from all corners of the world. But six years after the devastating earthquake --  in spite of the combined efforts of international aid organizations, foreign governments and Haiti's own leaders – Haiti is still struggling to rebuild.

Mike Stocker

About 21 minutes into the documentary “Sweet Dillard,” the camera captures a moment of high drama in the band room of Fort Lauderdale’s Dillard High School. Christopher Dorsey, the school’s music teacher, checks his cell phone and says calmly, “We’ve been invited back to Ellington.”

A cheer goes up from the kids in the band. Because “Ellington” is the Essentially Ellington High School Jazz Band Competition, an annual high school jazz festival and competition that takes place at New York City’s Lincoln Center.

Fernando Vergara / AP via Miami Herald

In the last month, two powerful and influential entities have weighed in on how to deal with growing concerns over the zika virus in Latin America.  While health officials investigate whether the virus is linked to a devastating birth defect, the United Nations has been urging Latin American countries to loosen their abortion laws.

Meanwhile, Pope Francis turned heads last week when he suggested that the Vatican's stance on artificial birth control would be softened somewhat in light of the crisis.

blacktechweek.com

Felecia Hatcher boasts a pretty impressive tech and entrepreneurial CV. 

After working as a marketing manager for such companies as Nintendo and Sony,  the 32-year-old Hatcher started Miami-based Feverish Pops, a gourmet popsicle company that’s still going strong. She was also honored by the White House for her work as the co-founder of Code Fever, an initiative that trains black youth in the areas of technology and entrepreneurship. She’s written several books aimed at people who want to start a business on a shoestring.

Jan. 12, 2016 turned out to be Cary Lambrix’s lucky day.

It was on that day the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that Florida's death sentencing process was unconstitutional because it gives judges rather than juries the power to condemn someone to death. As a result, Lambrix, who’s been on Death Row for 31 years for murdering two people in Glades County, had his Feb. 11, 2016 execution blocked by the Florida Supreme court.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruling now has Florida lawmakers racing to fix the state's way of dispensing capital punishment.

Lionsgate Films

Advice to Florida's recent film school graduates: if you want to make a living, pack up and move to another state.

Two Florida film schools are on The Hollywood Reporter's list of 25 best in the country: the film programs at Florida State University and the Ringling College of Art and Design. But film industry advocates warn that if any more big-budget movies leave Florida, the negative impact on the state's film industry will be, well, epic.

Miami New Drama

In Jewish folklore, a golem is a creature fashioned of clay and animated by magic.  To Michel Hausmann, the golem is less a Yiddisha Frankenstein's monster than a dark knight.

“It’s a Jewish Superman,” says Hausmann. “It’s the ancestor of all superheroes.  When you don’t have the strength to fight your enemies, you create this creature to do the fighting for you.”

But what happens after it defeats your enemies?

“Then YOU become the enemy,” posits Hausmann.

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