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Stephanie Colombini

Reporter

Stephanie Colombini joined WUSF Public Media in December 2016 as Producer of Florida Matters, WUSF’s public affairs show. She’s also a reporter for WUSF’s Health News Florida project.

Stephanie was born and raised just outside New York City. She graduated from Fordham University in the Bronx, where she got her start in radio at NPR member station WFUV in 2012. In addition to reporting and anchoring, Stephanie helped launch the news department’s first podcast series, Issues Tank.

Prior to joining the WUSF family, Stephanie spent a year reporting for CBS Radio’s flagship station WCBS Newsradio 880 in Manhattan. Her assignments included breaking news stories such as the 2016 bombings in Manhattan’s Chelsea neighborhood and Seaside Park, NJ and political campaigns. As part of her job there, she was forced to – and survived – a night of reporting on New Year’s Eve in Times Square.

Her work in feature reporting and podcast production has earned her awards from the Public Radio News Directors, Inc. and the Alliance for Women in Media.

While off-the-clock, you might catch Stephanie at a rock concert, on a fishing boat or anywhere that serves delicious food.

Contact Stephanie by emailing her at scolombini@wusf.org or follow her on Twitter @steph_colombini.

VA doctors and nurses who attend the training at USF Health CAMLS can practice women's health exams on real people trained to act like patients.
Allison Long / USF Health CAMLS

The Department of Veterans Affairs is working with USF Health to train providers to better care for women patients.

Many airmen at Tyndall are living in dorms, some that survived the storm and others built afterwards so that service members no longer had to sleep in tents.
Airman 1st Class Monica Roybal / U.S. Air Force

Tyndall Air Force in the Panhandle is making progress in a massive effort to rebuild after it was devastated by Hurricane Michael last fall. But the need for housing and sufficient funds to complete the repairs are still critical issues.

This week on Florida Matters we talk about what communities are doing to prevent sewage spills.
Julio Ochoa / WUSF Public Media

This week on Florida Matters we talk about what communities are doing to keep from releasing sewage and other contaminants into our local waterways. Part of the problem comes from aging wastewater and stormwater systems. 


Glassblowing instructor Matthew Piepenbrock helps veterans create a piece in the Morean hot shop.
Beth Reynolds / Morean Arts Center

The Morean Arts Center in St. Petersburg runs a program that teaches glassblowing to veterans. Researchers at the University of South Florida recently evaluated the program, known as Operation Art of Valor.

MacDill Air Force Base Commander Col. Stephen Snelson addressed teachers who work at Tinker K-8 on base during an orientation program about military culture.
Stephanie Colombini / WUSF Public Media

Monday is the first day of school in Hillsborough County and teachers are preparing for the new year. For teachers at Tinker K-8 on MacDill Air Force Base, that includes learning about military culture at an orientation program the base hosted Thursday.

Many people may not realize that wine making in Florida is a billion-dollar industry. There are dozens of wineries across the state employing nearly 100,000 people, and university research departments dedicated to viticulture.

A diver explores one of the 12 statues that currently make up the Circle of Heroes underwater veterans memorial.
Catalyst Communications Group

Scuba divers took the first official plunge to explore the new Circle of Heroes memorial in the Gulf of Mexico on Monday. 

Observers watch an explosion during Operation Hardtack in 1958. 35 nuclear tests were conducted in the Pacific, exposing troops to radiation.
NEVADA NATIONAL SECURITY SITE

The new certificate recognizes as many as 550,000 veterans who were exposed to nuclear weapons tests between 1945 and 1992. But the certificates leave a lot of atomic veterans underwhelmed.

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The Tampa Bay area is becoming a hub for craft beer both statewide and nationally, with the highest density of breweries in Florida.

This week on Florida Matters, we take another listen to our show about beer.

A group of five beached whales appeared on Redington Beach this morning.
Pinellas County Sheriff's Office

Wildlife officials spent Monday rescuing a group of five whales that beached themselves on Redington Beach that morning.

Officials with Clearwater Marine Aquarium used trucks and boats to transport the whales to safe locations.

Skyline in downtown St. Petersburg
City of St. Petersburg

St. Petersburg city officials have announced a ten-year plan to create more affordable housing as rents rise across the region.

CBD is now legal in Florida, but not all products are created equal.
Courtesy Second and Seed

CBD is showing up more and more in Florida, from gas stations to grocery stories. It was being sold long before it became legal in the state on July 1. But there is a lot of confusion about whether it’s safe and what is legitimate.

Jobs that allow employees to work from home can be a good fit for military spouses, who frequently have to move.
Pixabay

By Stephanie Colombini

Veterans and members of the military seeking jobs as they transition to civilian life can connect with potential employers at a job fair Thursday at Amalie Arena in Tampa.

Fair organizers are also welcoming military spouses, who often struggle to find steady work.


The loggerhead turtle is the most common sea turtle found in Florida. Females return to their nesting beach every two or more years.
Mote Marine Laboratory and Aquarium

By Robin Sussingham, Stephanie Colombini, Steve Newborn and Cathy Carter.

They’ve had to battle shark attacks, pollution, massive beach developments and confusing light sources, but sea turtles are bouncing back.

With nesting season well underway, Florida Matters host Robin Sussingham speaks with experts about how sea turtles are faring and efforts to protect them in our state.


Astronaut Buzz Aldrin on the surface of the moon during the Apollo 11 mission.
NASA

By Robin Sussingham and Stephanie Colombini 

Saturday July 20 marks the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, considered by many to be one of the most significant achievements in U.S. history.

This week on Florida Matters we talk with a filmmaker who produced a documentary about the historic event. 


Beach on Anna Maria Island.
Renee/flickr

Recent reported cases of flesh-eating bacteria infections from the Gulf of Mexico may have some people wary to spend the holiday weekend by the water.

But infectious disease expert Dr. Vilma Vega said there is no reason for everyone to avoid the beach.


summer reading
Pixabay

By Robin Sussingham and Stephanie Colombini

Summer can be a great time to catch up on reading, so this week Florida Matters is offering up recommendations for good books to check out this season.


Army veteran Mike Monthervil (left) uses an adaptive controller to play video games as his VA recreational therapist Jamie Kaplan watches.
Stephanie Colombini / WUSF Public Media

By Stephanie Colombini

Some VA medical centers have realized that helping vets get back in the game can also help with their recovery.


USF President Judy Genshaft stands in front of a fountain on the Tampa campus.
USF Marketing and Communications

With University of South Florida President Judy Genshaft’s July 1 retirement approaching, this week's Florida Matters looks back at her 19 years leading USF.

Host Robin Sussingham talks to Assistant News Directors Steve Newborn and Mark Schreiner, who have covered Genshaft since both arrived at WUSF in 2001, shortly after Genshaft became USF's sixth president.


Appearing at U.S. Central Command headquarters in Tampa, Secretary Pompeo addressed the recent decision to send 1,000 more troops to the Middle East amid growing tensions with Iran.
Stephanie Colombini / WUSF Public Media

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo addressed growing tensions with Iran Tuesday. He spoke to reporters after a closed meeting with military leaders at U.S. Central Command headquarters in Tampa.


Patron boarding bus
HART

Less than a month after one of their drivers was killed by a passenger, the Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority is installing safety barriers on all of its vehicles.

Podcast microphone.
Tumisu/Pixabay

Whether you’re interested in politics, music, crime, technology or just about anything, there is likely a podcast for you. But while millions of people enjoy listening to podcasts every day, others still don’t understand this relatively new form of media.

This week on Florida Matters: Podcasting 101.


Lt. Gerald Berry of Clearwater flew one of the planes that transported paratroopers behind enemy lines on D-Day. He was honored with eight other WWII vets during a ceremony at MacDill Air Force Base.
Stephanie Colombini / WUSF Public Media

Nine World War II veterans were honored Thursday in a ceremony at MacDill Air Force Base commemorating the 75th anniversary of the D-Day invasion.


Mosquitos are just one of the types of insects out in full force in Florida this season.
CDC

Lovebugs, termites, mosquitoes, cockroaches – there is no doubt that Florida is home to many insects, and they seem to thrive in the state's hot, humid conditions.

You can’t avoid them, so this week on Florida Matters we’re talking about how to deal with them.


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have reported more than 900 cases of measles in the United States this year, including two in Florida.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has reported more than 900 cases of measles in the United States this year, including two in Florida. Meanwhile the number of cases of Hepatitis A in the state continues to rise.

This week on Florida Matters, we talk about how the environmental history of the Gulf of Mexico shaped human life over the years with Jack E. Davis, whose book The Gulf: The Making of An American Sea won the 2018 Pulitzer Prize for History.


The James A. Haley Veterans' Hospital's new outpatient clinic in southern Hillsborough County is up and running.
Stephanie Colombini / WUSF Public Media

Veterans in southern Hillsborough County no longer have to travel to the James A. Haley Veterans' Hospital in Tampa every time they need to see a doctor.


People board a HART bus.
HART

Presenters at a Café Con Tampa event Friday talked about how they want Hillsborough County to spend transportation funds, particularly future revenue from the higher sales tax voters passed last fall.

Most of the time they talked about not wanting any rail service.

95 year-old WWII veteran Joe Perricone will walk at Hillsborough High School's graduation Saturday to finally receive his diploma in person.
Stephanie Colombini / WUSF Public Media

A 95 year-old World War II veteran will walk across the stage Saturday at Hillsborough High School's graduation ceremony to finally receive his diploma in person.


Citrus greening shrinks the size of oranges.
Jessica Meszaros / WUSF Public Media

Citrus has shaped the state’s identity for 100 years. But it has been a tough ten years with freezes, hurricanes, development pressure and, worst of all, citrus greening.

This week on Florida Matters we take a deep dive into the state of Florida’s citrus industry.


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