Katie Lepri

Engagement Producer

Katie Lepri is WLRN's engagement producer. She previously covered city government and corruption, environment and the arts at the Miami Herald. She graduated with a degree in journalism from Florida International University.

She's been with the newsroom since July 2016.

Ford

Driverless cars are coming to Miami-Dade County.

This week, Ford announced that the county will serve as the first test site for its fleet of self-driving cars. 

Two fleets have already hit the road. (Human "safety drivers" are serving as backup.)

The first fleet will use mapping technology to learn Miami's environment while the second group will deliver pizza. Ford is partnering with Domino's to see how customers  respond to the system.

Nancy Dahlberg / Miami Herald

Felecia Hatcher knows there are a lot of challenges in the black tech community.

Hector Gabino / El Nuevo Herald

Charlie Hand has been living in Miami's Spring Garden neighborhood for almost two decades. He has dealt with the area’s changes firsthand.

“In this restaurant district, there’s music coming from restaurants and yachts out back and fireworks,” he says. “And that has diminished our quality of life, to be woken up in the night and early morning.”

jvoves via Flickr Creative Commons

"Read more" is a common New Year's resolution — and some of us even take on reading challenges, with a number of books, or to read more of a specific author or genre.

For our first #FridayReads post of the new year, we asked some local experts — South Florida librarians — about reading goals.

Charles Allen, Librarian, Miami-Dade County Library

This year, I want to read more about how capitalism intersects with and exacerbates things like sexism and racism. I also want to read more about the politics of the modern Middle East.

WLRN News / Miami Herald

If you thought the first year of President Trump’s Administration was an unprecedented year in politics, just wait. 

2018 brings with it the midterm election, including the races for Florida governor, the U.S. Senate and House and the expiration of two federal immigration programs — Temporary Protected Status and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals.

Plus, a passenger train service is supposed to get rolling between Miami, Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach. 

WLRN/Miami Herald

A lot has happened in the past 365 days.

A Category 4 hurricane plowed across the Florida Keys. President Obama ended the “wet foot, dry foot” policy for Cubans. The death toll related to Florida's opioid epidemic climbed higher. Venezuela sank further into economic and social chaos.

For the last episode of The Florida Roundup in 2017, editorial page editors from the Miami Herald, the Sun Sentinel and the Palm Beach Post — Nancy Ancrum, Rosemary O’Hara and Rick Christie — sat down with WLRN's Tom Hudson to review the year’s biggest news stories. 

REUTERS

Two of Florida’s largest counties, Palm Beach and Broward, have started a process that could take opioid drug makers to court for their roles in the opioid crisis. 

AP Photo/Steve Cannon

The first reports of Sen. Jeff Clemens' extramarital affair with a lobbyist came four days before Halloween. The Lake Worth politician was the top Democrat in the state Senate and set to lead the minority party in 2019. He resigned that same day.

Associated Press

Barbuda was the first. A Category 5 Hurricane Irma swept the island with its powerful 185 mile per hour winds. One person died. The prime minister said 95 percent of the buildings were destroyed after the storm passed.

On Wednesday, Irma made history: It became one of the most powerful recorded storm in the Atlantic Ocean. It bulldozed the U.S. Virgin Islands, ripping roofs off houses in St. Barts and flooding St. Martin. By the time the hurricane left St. Martin and St. Barts, 11 people died. 

Nancy Klingener / WLRN

The slight veer south in the projected track of Hurricane Irma led some Florida Keys holdouts to hit the road Friday.

The entire Florida Keys island chain has been under a mandatory evacuation order for residents since Wednesday evening.

Still, some residents are sticking it out. Including Kerry and Diane Shelby of Key West.

"The entire state of Florida's evacuating. So we looked at both options and it just looked a little too difficult to get out," Kerry Shelby said. "So we decided we were on the good side of the storm, we were going to stay here."

WIN MCNAMEE / GETTY IMAGES

After Harvey, the questions all South Floridians are asking are — could it happen here? What if it happened here?

Listen: 

With Hurricane Irma gathering strength in the Atlantic, we'll talk about the science of Harvey, the hydrology of South Florida and how flood water collects and moves about our region. WLRN's Tom Hudson will talk with two county emergency management directors about getting ready and staying ready. 

Work: It's just one of the many reasons to explain why Americans love the weekend so much.

This weekend, however, we're going to give you a little bit more of it - in book form, that is. It is Labor Day weekend, after all, so we're celebrating. 

Al Diaz / Miami Herald

Haitians living under Temporary Protected Status are concerned that their time in the United States is running out. Some of them are looking north — as in Canada. 

More than 3,800 Haitian migrants crossed into Quebec in the first half of August. But is our northern neighbor accepting asylum seekers with open arms?

Guests: Jacqueline Charles, Caribbean Correspondent Miami Herald

Katie Lepri / WLRN News

Clear skies and full visibility conspired on Monday afternoon to guarantee that science enthusiasts in South Florida had an unobstructed view of the solar eclipse traveling through the United States. 

Victor Vincent remembers Hurricane Andrew well, even after 25 years.

At the time, he was working at the Miami Science Museum and living with his girlfriend, now wife, in Miami's Country Walk. 

Close to 90 percent of the houses in Country Walk were destroyed during the storm, including Vincent's. Many homeowners ended up suing the developer, Arvida, for poor construction.  Miami-Dade County adopted stricter building codes, but the damage had already been done. 

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