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Brechner Center’s 2024 Freedom of Information Award: Miami Herald Investigative Team

April 8 @ 11:30 am - 1:00 pm

March 11th from 11:30 pm – 1:00 pm
with Miami Herald investigative journalists Sarah Blaskey, Joey Flechas, and Casey Frank
Please register by Monday, April 1st.

Three investigative journalists from The Miami Herald will discuss their award-winning reporting about Miami corruption at a public luncheon April 8 in Gainesville hosted by the Florida Free Speech Forum. The Miami Herald won the annual 2024 Brechner Freedom of Information Award for “Shakedown City,” an investigation into government shenanigans within the city of Miami that spawned a series of investigations by the FBI, Internal Revenue Service, Securities and Exchange Commission and state ethics commission. The award is administered by the Joseph L. Brechner Freedom of Information Project at the University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications.

The journalists submitted more than 150 public records requests and battled almost daily with city attorneys when the requests were ignored. The Herald’s document-based reporting revealed that Mayor Francis Suarez secretly received $170,000 from a developer, and used his clout to secure 13 side jobs, including for crypto-related ventures, encouraging staff to convert paychecks to digital tokens. The Miami Herald also won a Brechner FOI Award in 2016 for an investigation into Florida’s child-welfare system, and in 2007 for illegal case-sealing practices in the Broward court system.

Speakers will include:
Sarah Blaskey, investigative reporter
Joey Flechas, City of Miami reporter
Casey Frank, senior investigations editor.



  • Cone Park Branch Library, 2801 E. University Avenue
  • 11:30 – Lunch
  • 12:00 – Presentation begins
  • Registration deadline – Mon, April 1st



Registration is now closed.

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April 8
11:30 am - 1:00 pm


Cone Park Branch Library
2801 E. University Ave.
Gainesville, FL 32641 United States
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