Steve Newborn

Interim News Director

Steve Newborn is WUSF's interim news director as well as a reporter and producer at WUSF covering environmental issues, politics and just about everything else in the Tampa Bay area.

He’s been with WUSF since 2001, and has covered events such as President George W. Bush’s speech in Sarasota as the Sept. 11 attacks unfolded; the ongoing drama over whether the feeding tube should be removed from Terri Schiavo; the arrest and terrorism trial of USF professor Sami Al-Arian; and how the BP Deepwater Horizon spill affected Florida.

Before joining WUSF, he covered environmental and Polk County news for the Tampa Tribune and worked for NASA at the Kennedy Space Center during the early days of the space shuttle. Steve is a graduate of the journalism department at the University of South Florida.


1:58 pm
Tue April 22, 2014

WUSF Wins Two Regional Edward R. Murrow Awards

Edward R. would be proud

WUSF has won two regional 2014 Edward R. Murrow Awards.And they both went to…. drum roll please…. WUSF reporter Bobbie O’Brien. For Best Feature Reporting for her story on Autism Defined by Those with the Diagnosis that she did with our intern, Andrew Casey; and for best Sports Reporting for Veteran Athletes Give Super Effort in Super G.

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3:37 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

4th Anniversary of BP Oil Spill Marked in St. Petersburg

Congressman David Jolly at the St. Petersburg waterfront event. Jolly says protecting the Gulf should not be a "partisan issue."
Credit Steve Newborn / WUSF

Sunday marks the 4th anniversary of the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Even though most of the visible oil is gone, the effects of chemical dispersants that sank much of the oil to the Gulf's bottom linger on. Today, a group of scientists and environmental activists marked the occasion with a call for more action to protect the Gulf.

The wind- and wave-whipped St. Petersburg waterfront formed the backdrop for what amounted to a plea for more research into how marine life in the Gulf has been affected by the spill - and how to prevent it from happening again.

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3:16 pm
Wed April 9, 2014

Two Barges Run Aground Off Longboat Key

The second barge after it ran aground
Credit U.S. Coast Guard photo

Coast Guard crews are responding to a second grounded barge near Longboat Key from a tugboat that was buffeted by heavy weather Tuesday.

Here's the news release from the U.S. Coast Guard:

Due to deteriorating weather, the barge spuds were unable to keep the 140-foot barge from drifting to the beach. Coast Guard incident management personnel from Sector St. Petersburg, Fla., are on scene overseeing the operation. No pollution has been reported.

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Off The Base
2:35 pm
Fri April 4, 2014

Two Victims of Fort Hood Shootings from Tampa Bay Area

Carlos Lazeny

Two of the victims of Wednesday's mass shooting at the Fort Hood military base in Texas apparently came from the Tampa Bay area.

Various news outlets are reporting that Sgt. Danny Ferguson is a graduate of Mulberry High School in Polk County. The other victim is Carlos Lazaney, whose family lives in Tampa.

WFLA-TV is reporting that Ferguson, 39, was originally from Mulberry and a 1993 graduate of Mulberry High School.

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4:04 pm
Thu April 3, 2014

I-75 in Pasco County Set to Widen

Gov. Rick Scott today announced the advancement of $128 million in widening projects along the I-75 corridor in Pasco County by more than five years.These projects will address the growing transportation needs in the Tampa Bay area by widening the current interstate from two lanes in each direction to three.

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Law & Order
2:34 pm
Tue April 1, 2014

Dozier Exhumation Request Heads to Pennsylvania Governor

Credit Credit Michael Spooneybarger / Reuters/Landov

U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Florida, is asking the governor of Pennsylvania to have state police there work with a team of Florida researchers investigating the circumstances surrounding a young boy’s death at a now-shuttered reform school.

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Law & Order
5:05 pm
Fri March 28, 2014

Watch: Hillsborough Deputies' Bovine Rescue

Credit Hillsborough Sheriff's Office

Hillsborough Sheriff's Deputies today rescued a bull that was in danger of drowning in a retention pond.


Here's the release from the sheriff's department:

Today at approximately 8:45 am, HCSO was contacted by a man mowing the grass along the county right-a-way about a cow he spotted struggling in a small retention pond. The cow was later determined to be a 20 year old bull that weighed approximately 1000 lbs.

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Off The Base
4:52 pm
Fri March 28, 2014

Bill Nelson Slams VA For Not Answering Reports of Vet's Deaths

James A. Haley VA Hospital

The Veterans Administration has been fending off reports that military veterans have died needlessly because of long waits and delayed care at veterans’ hospitals. Today, Florida Senator Bill Nelson came to Tampa - looking for answers.

Nelson got a couple of answers - but other bigger issues were still left hanging. Like whether it's true that least 19 veterans have died because of delays in simple medical screenings at various VA hospitals or clinics across the country.

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12:19 pm
Thu March 27, 2014

WUSF Wins 7 AP Florida Broadcasters Awards

That's a lotta Lucite!

WUSF Public Broadcasting took home seven awards at the Florida Associated Press Broadcasters awards banquet Saturday night in Orlando. WUSF took home two first place awards, and five second place awards.

This is a reflection of the great work our staff has done during the past year. At WUSF, we strive to bring you balanced, informative reports every day. Please click on the links below to get a sample of some of these works. Congratulations to our reporters!

-Steve Newborn, Interim News Director.

FIRST PLACE: Sports Feature

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5:01 pm
Wed March 26, 2014

New Poll Shows Charlie Crist with Slight Lead Over Gov. Scott


A new poll by Saint Leo University shows Charlie Crist with a slight lead in his quest to recapture the governor's mansion from Rick Scott.

The poll shows the former governor leades the current governor by a margin of 43 to 39 percent - which is just within the margin of error. But Scott is closing the gap since December, according to the Saint Leo University Polling Institute. Then, Crist led Scott 46 to 34, or by 12 points. The new poll shows an 8-point swing in Scott’s direction, though the incumbent Republican still trails Crist.

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9:04 am
Fri March 21, 2014

Pablo Picasso Coming to Visit Salvador Dali

First it was Andy Warhol.

Now, it's Pablo Picasso's turn to come to Salvador Dali.

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10:59 am
Mon March 17, 2014

State Unemployment Rate Drops Again

The state's unemployment rates continues to drop - while job creation in the Tampa Bay area is lagging behind the rest of the state.

That's according to the numbers released today by state economists. The state's unemployment rate in January was 6.1 percent. That's the lowest the rate has been since June 2008.

There are an estimated 581,000 Floridians out of work. Florida's unemployment rate remains below the national average of 6.6 percent.

Gov. Rick Scott has contended the state's unemployment rate is dropping due to his policies.

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6:06 pm
Thu February 27, 2014

Charlie Crist at USF; Vows Support for High-Speed Rail

Steve Newborn WUSF

Charlie Crist has been somewhat quiet on the campaign trail, preferring to hawk his new book rather than take his message to the corners of the state. Today, he campaigned in Tampa for the first time since announcing his candidacy for governor.

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5:55 pm
Wed February 26, 2014

The State of the Everglades: Pythons, Rising Seas and Rising Bridges

Alligator vs Burmese Python. Score 1 for the natives
National Parks Service

Author and proto-environmentalist Marjory Stoneman Douglas was remarked to have said, "The Everglades is a test. If we pass it, we may get to keep the planet." (Although some contend the remark was penned by Joe Podgor, who worked closely with her for many years).  With all the ditching and dredging that's been going on for the past century, we're likely failing that test.  But a slew of new projects is giving hope for the future.

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11:00 pm
Wed February 12, 2014

New Poll: Alex Sink Leads David Jolly For District 13

A new poll shows Democrat Alex Sink has a good-sized lead over Republican David Jolly in the race to replace Bill Young in Congress.

The poll shows Sink with a seven-percentage-point lead over Jolly. The poll was commissioned by WUSF Public Media, Bay News 9 and the Tampa Bay Times and surveyed 603 registered voters in Congressional District 13 - all who say they're likely to vote in the March 11 election.

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