Wilson Sayre


Wilson Sayre was born and bred in Raleigh, N.C., home of the only real barbecue in the country (we're talking East here). She graduated from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, where she studied Philosophy.

Sayre took a year off school to live in a Zen monastery in Japan and quickly realized that a life of public radio would be a bit more forgiving. Upon returning to the States, she helped launch a news program at UNC’s college-radio station, WXYC. Through error and error, she taught herself how to make radio stories.

She worked with NPR member station WUNC in Chapel Hill, interning for The Story with Dick Gordon. Then she went on to help to run WUNC's Youth Radio Institute, teaching at-risk teenagers how to make radio.

Sayre likes to keep chickens, pickle okra and make sound collages.

Sayre initially came down to WLRN in 2013 for a reporting fellowship. After that, she decided she couldn't leave. She's continued her a mission to get more Miamians to wear overalls and say y'all.

Ways to Connect

Wilson Sayre / WLRN News

Lines were moving much more quickly at Hard Rock Stadium at mid-day Thursday, the final day to register for disaster food assistance (D-SNAP) in Miami-Dade and Broward counties.

After reaching capacity early Wednesday amid accounts of people passing out in the heat, the registration sites seemed to have finally gotten into the swing of things Thursday.

Sweaty and eager to be done waiting in line, most were just happy to get the assistance they walked away with, ranging between $192 and $1,153.

Wilson Sayre / WLRN

Bruno Rebuffo heard the crane fall before he knew what it was.

“It sounded like an earthquake, honestly,” he said. “It was a big loud boom and you thought the roof is going to fall”

People waiting in line
Caitie Switalski / WLRN

On the first day of make-up registration for disaster food assistance, lines were long, while lawyers who were suing over how the program has been rolled out hashed things out in court.

Wilson Sayre / WLRN

After people looking for food assistance waited in lines up to eight hours long, the state has announced extra days for sign up for the Disaster Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program, or D-SNAP.

The state has processed about 937,000 D-SNAP applications so far. In addition to replacement assistance for people who already get food stamps, Florida has provided nearly $1.2 billion in food assistance.

People who need unemployment assistance after Hurricane Irma might not be getting the help that is available to them.

Creative Commons via Flickr / hydropeek (https://flic.kr/p/5ez2xn)

In Florida, 16- and 17-year-olds can get married to someone of any age with the signature of a parent. If a girl is pregnant, she can get married at any age, even at 10 and 11- years old.

But, a bill trying to cut down on under-age marriages is moving its way through the Florida Legislature, with the hope that it will end that practice.

Wilson Sayre / WLRN

Kendrix Haynes lost a lot in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma: all his food and his pet bearded dragon, Rocky. It was the power (or rather the lack of it). Without it, his refrigerator couldn’t stay cold enough and the heat lamp wasn't hot enough. 

Fight Club Part Two

Oct 11, 2017

Over the past decade, hundreds of children in the care of the Department of Juvenile Justice have suffered abuse and neglect, sometimes at the hands of officers hired to help rehabilitate them.

“Fight Club”-- is a new Miami Herald investigation out this week that looked into these abuses.

Reporter Carol Marbin Miller explores why there’s such a pattern of wrongdoing.

Click here to listen to the entire series.

Fight Club Part Three

Oct 11, 2017

This week we’ve been hearing stories about abuses in the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice, the system that is supposed to rehabilitate children in the state who break the law.

Carol Marbin Miller is one of the reporters on the Miami Herald investigation called Fight Club.

She brings us this piece on ways other states have found success in helping kids and how Florida might start to fix things.

Click here to listen to the entire series.  


A half dozen homeless people in Miami-Dade County were involuntarily committed to the hospital for evaluation as Hurricane Irma continued its course towards South Florida.

Now, a month later, the Miami-Dade County Homeless Trust has evaluated whether that was the right move.

The week before Irma hit, hundreds of people living in downtown Miami, many close to the seawalls in places that heavily flood like Bayfront Park, continued to refuse spots in a homeless shelter.

Miami Herald

Emory Jones just needs to look at his left arm for a reminder of what happened at Avon Park Youth Academy. There is a faint scar in the shape of a snake above his elbow from when an officer beat him.

Miami Herald

For the last two years, the Miami Herald has been looking into systemic abuse within the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ), the division designed to rehabilitate minors who get into trouble with the law.

Caitie Switalski

If Mike Lambrix’s case played out today exactly the way it did when he was convicted in 1984, he would not have been sent to Death Row and executed, as he was Thursday night.

For more than a year and a half I exchanged letters with Lambrix, who preferred to go by Mike. I met him and his family to report the radio documentary: “Cell 1: Florida’s Death Penalty in Limbo.” The death penalty in Florida is no longer in limbo, and Lambrix was the second inmate to be put to death since executions resumed at the end of August.

David Jones / WUFT News

Instead of opting for a few final words as he is strapped to a gurney in the death chamber, Florida Death Row inmate Mike Lambrix decided to speak his mind during an hour-long group interview Tuesday, two days before his scheduled execution.