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Colleen Wright - St. Petersburg Reporter

St. Petersburg Reporter

My 91-year-old Abuela says my career in journalism is what the American Dream is all about. My Abuelo fled Cuba and arrived in Miami in 1962. He washed dishes in the old Miami Herald cafeteria to support his family, including a baby girl on the way — my mother. Almost half a century later, the Herald gave me my first journalism job as a 17-year-old high school intern. I interned at newspapers all over the country, including at the Tampa Bay Times in 2014. It was the Times that gave me my first job after I graduated from the University of Florida, covering education in Pinellas County from 2015 to 2018. Then I returned to Miami to cover education and the nation’s fourth-largest school district for my hometown paper for three years. Now I’m back at the Times, covering St. Petersburg’s government and people. Miami may be my hometown, but the Sunshine City is my home. I live and breathe local journalism, and I’m proud I’ve spent my career working at Florida’s best newspapers.

  1. The city of St. Petersburg received four proposals by the Friday deadline to redevelop the area around Tropicana Field.
  2. Protesters from the St. Petersburg Tenants Union gather at the Stanton Apartments in October 2021.
  3. The courts are filled as pickleball games get underway during the City of St. Pete Parks & Rec mixed doubles recreational league at Crescent Lake Park on Thursday, Feb. 17, 2022 in St. Petersburg.
  4. Jordan "Doyle" Walsh was officially named St. Petersburg Mayor Ken Welch's chief of staff on Monday, Nov. 21.
  5. A view of the overflow debris management site at Maximo Park in St. Petersburg on Oct. 19.
  6. An exterior view of the Manhattan Casino, 642 22nd St S, on Monday, Nov. 7, 2022 in St. Petersburg. The Manhattan Casino's management has changed many hands since the city bought the historic building in 2002.
  7. Flags during the St. Pete Pride Parade on Saturday, June 25, 2022 in St. Petersburg.
  8. Karla Correa, 22, an organizer with the St. Petersburg Tenants Union, advocates for rent control outside City Hall during a sleep-in protest on Wednesday, Aug. 10, 2022, in St. Petersburg. Organizers want City Council to declare a housing state of emergency and to put rent control on the November election ballot.
  9. The debris piles from Hurricane Ian in the ally on the north side of the Millennium Youth Park, 542 7th St N, on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2022 in St. Petersburg.
  10. Republican candidate Brian Scott, left, won a Pinellas County Commission seat Tuesday, while conservative candidates Dawn Peters, top right, and Stephanie Meyer won Pinellas County School Board seats.
  11. An exterior view of the Tomlinson Building, 296 Mirror Lake Drive N. in downtown St. Petersburg on Wednesday. The Pinellas County School District has issued a request for proposals to redevelop the property and manage it as teacher and staffer housing.
  12. Rays President Brian Auld speaks at an event at Tropicana Field in August.
  13. St.Petersburg Mayor Ken Welch speaks at a press conference as Florida awaits Hurricane Ian’s arrival at the Pinellas County Emergency Operations Center on Monday, Sept. 26, 2022, in Largo.
  14. John Muhammad Malone is sworn in as the new St. Petersburg District 7 Council Member by the Honorable Pamela A. M. Campbell, Sixth Judicial Circuit, in the City Hall Council Chambers at City Hall on Thursday, Oct. 20, 2022 in St. Petersburg.
  15. City of St. Petersburg Leisure Services Administrator Michael Jefferis, on left, and St. Petersburg Mayor Ken Welch host a media briefing on debris pickup at the overflow debris management site at Maximo Park, Pinellas Point Dr. S and Sunshine Skyway Ln S, on Wednesday, Oct. 19, 2022 in St. Petersburg.
  16. The winning entry describes the pier as “a unique public entity in today’s world.”
  17. A SunRunner bus is parked at the 1st Avenue N and 5th Street N station on Wednesday.
  18. Pinellas County Commissioner René Flowers embraces John (Muhammad) Malone, a 46-year-old community activist, after he was appointed to the St. Petersburg City Council on Thursday, Oct. 13, 2022.
  19. Concerned residents attend a St. Petersburg City Council meeting on Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022 in St. Petersburg.
  20. Brother John Muhammad, president of the Childs Park Neighborhood Association, is one of seven candidates seeking to fill the District 7 seat on the St. Petersburg City Council. The seat was left vacant following the resignation of Lisa Wheeler-Bowman after questions arose about whether she was still living in the southwestern St. Petersburg district.
  21. Poll officials set up at The Coliseum in St. Petersburg the day before Election Day in November 2020. On this year's general election ballot, St. Petersburg voters have two charter amendments proposals and two referendum questions, including one that could change how the city conducts elections.
  22. Sharon Wright, St. Petersburg's sustainability and resiliency officer, is leaving the city to take a new job.
  23. People listen while attending during a press conference held by local Black pastors, announcing their official endorsement of Sugar Hill Community Partners developers as their choice for the redevelopment of the Tropicana Field site, Thursday, May 19, 2022 in St. Petersburg.
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