Saturday, October 20, 2018


Ernest Hooper

Ernest Hooper

Ernest Hooper is the East Hillsborough Bureau chief and columnist at the Tampa Bay Times. Hooper joined the Times in 1992 and has worked as a prep sports writer and editor, TV/radio sports columnist, NFL writer, news columnist and unofficial ambassador, representing the Times as an emcee, judge or keynote speaker at hundreds of nonprofit events and civic functions. Hooper added the role of East Hillsborough Bureau chief in 2012. He oversees news content for the Times' regional edition east of Tampa, the SouthShore & Brandon Times, and writes two columns a week. His commentaries about family, community issues and political perspectives have helped Hooper connect with readers over the years, but he's probably best known for his signature tagline: That's all I'm saying.

Moms Demand Action founder Shannon Watts will speak at Clearwater's Temple B'Nai Israel on Sunday, Oct. 21, 2018. Chris Langford with Chris Langford Photo. | Special to the Times

Hooper: Salute solutionists, leaders who invest in action

Solutionists.The word recently popped up in a conversation with a friend and it struck a chord. I call them doers, but I like solutionists even more. Instead of just talking about issues, they take action.In...
Published: 10/15/18
Jaime Johnston poses with her daughter Madison. ERNEST HOOPER | Times

Love, INC. helps her find a path through the storms of life

The upstart nonprofit, which holds a fundraising breakfast Tuesday, coordinates the efforts of churches to help those in need.
Published: 10/12/18
The inaugural Tampa Bay Food Fight was held last October at The Coliseum in St. Petersburg. This year's event will be at Tampa's Armature Works. [EVE EDELHEIT   |   Times (2017)]

Ernest Hooper: Tampa Bay Food Fight brings chefs, foodies together for good cause

The participants will fight for bragging rights, and the chance to help aspiring culinary artists.
Published: 10/10/18
A funeral service was held Oct. 1at Bell Shoals Baptist Church for Samantha Keithley, who deputies say was killed by her husband Kirk Keithley, a Hillsborough County sheriff's deputy, who then committed suicide. Abuse advocates say the media needs to describe such incidents as domestic violence to help raise awareness of the issue. [OCTAVIO JONES   |   Times]

Hooper: Donít leave Ďdomestic violence tragedyí out of murder-suicide stories

Itís time for journalists covering a murder-suicide to describe it as a domestic violence tragedy.Tampa Bay Times staff writer Tony Marrero
Published: 10/08/18
Chicago Bears running back Tarik Cohen (29) runs with the ball away from Bucs linebacker Adarius Taylor (53) during the second half on Sunday in Chicago. [Nuccio DiNuzzo/Chicago Tribune/TNS]

Bucs quarterly report: Would firing Mike Smith be an overreaction?

From 2-0 and the talk of the NFL to 2-2 and turning the Bears — THE BEARS — into the greatest show on turf.That's the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and, predictably, there's been panic in the air this week.Fire...
Published: 10/05/18
Julio Jones and the Atlanta Falcons could use a pat on the back these days. Jones got one from Bengals cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick after the final play of the Falcons' 37-36 loss to the Bengals on Sunday, Sept. 30 in Atlanta. The loss dropped the Falcons to 1-3. (Curtis Compton/Atlanta Journal-Constitution/TNS) 1241596

NFL picks Week 5: Our Bucs coverage teamís predictions

Here’s an alternative to spending your Bucs-less weekend fretting over Tampa Bay’s problems:Keep an eye on the Falcons, scout and compare defensive woes.The Falcons travel to Pittsburgh Sunday as 3.5-point underdogs to...
Published: 10/05/18
Blues musician Selwyn Birchwood of Carrollwood, who plays guitar barefoot, performed in San Francisco recently. [ERNEST HOOPER   |   Times]

Ernest Hooper: Gaining new appreciation for local talent from performance in San Francisco

SAN FRANCISCO — I found myself trekking through the hustle and bustle of this city's famous Nob Hill neighborhood with a group of friends last week, and little reminded me of home.Born and raised in Tallahassee, the five of us —...
Updated one month ago
A scenic vista on the Pacific Coast Highway south of Monterey, Calif., and north of Big Sur, Calif. ERNEST HOOPER | Times

Hooper: California dreaming has its merits

Random thoughts from a California vacation. The Pacific Coast Highway delivered on its promise of spectacular vistas, but some of the steep drops ó unguarded by rails ó lent new meaning to the word...
Updated one month ago
Jacquizz Rodgers (32) and the Bucs will meet the Chicago Bears again on Sunday, this time in Soldier Field. WILL VRAGOVIC   |   Times

NFL picks Week 4: Our Bucs coverage teamís predictions

The Bucs head to Chicago to face defensive end Khalil Mack and the Bears as underdogs for the fourth straight week.Chicago is a 3-point favorite for the 1 p.m. game Sunday against the Bucs. Tampa Bay won last year’s meeting, 29-7,...
Updated one month ago
Former Broward County Mayor Barbara Sharief spoke out against Amendment 1 in 2017, but in Tampa Bay, county commissioners and city council members have been relatively quiet about the proposal that could make it more difficult for municipalilties to provide basic services. TIMES FILES

Hooper: Donít trade progress for pennies. Reject Amendment 1

A lot of Tampa Bay city and county elected officials should be sounding the alarm about Amendment 1.The amendment, one of 12 voters will find on the November ballot, increases the maximum homestead exemption from $50,000 to...
Updated one month ago