FGCU 360 Now
April 20, 2018

WGCU reporter part of Everglades Summit in DC

WGCU Public Media reporter Jessica Meszaros has been chosen to moderate a panel at America’s Everglades Summit, a conference April 24-25 in Washington, D.C., gathering anglers, business owners, conservationists and elected officials from across the country to discuss protecting and preserving the Everglades.

The summit involves topics such as the science of Everglades restoration and how federal and state partnerships work as well as addresses by legislators from both political parties. Participants also will meet with members of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives.

WGCU reporter Jessica Meszaros reporting near Everglades City after Hurricane Irma in fall 2017. / Photo courtesy of Reagan Rule Photography

Meszaros’ April 24 panel, “Why It Matters: The Everglades as an Economic Engine,” will include representatives of The Orvis Company, Maverick Boat Group, The Florida Keys Fishing Guide Association, Pure Fishing Inc. and Sarabay Real Estate.

The summit was organized by the nonprofit Everglades Foundation, which works to protect and restore the Everglades through science, advocacy and education. In 2000, Congress passed the 30-year Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP) to restore, protect and preserve 18,000 square miles of land over 16 Florida counties. The foundation, based in Palmetto Bay, worked with nearly two dozen other private and public organizations to identify the goals for helping to fulfill CERP’s promise.

Meszaros, who joined WGCU in April 2015, has received numerous awards in recognition of her reporting, including three regional Edward R. Murrow Awards and five Associated Press Broadcasters’ Awards in 2016 and four first-place awards for 2017.Her reports have exposed problems with water quality in South Florida, including arsenic in groundwater on Pine Island and toxic red tide algal bloom poisoning Southwest Florida marine life. She was honored in the 2016 Sunshine State Awards for her general reporting on environmental issues.

A member-supported service of Florida Gulf Coast University, WGCU is Southwest Florida’s source for PBS and NPR programming.