Kevin Meerschaert

Producer, "First Coast Connect"

Kevin Meerschaert is back at WJCT after two years, rejoining the station as producer of First Coast Connect.

Kevin was a reporter for WJCT News from 2001 until 2014. He previously worked at public radio stations in Salisbury, Maryland;  Evansville, Indiana; and Ypsilanti, Michigan. He won several awards for reporting and was the recipient of the 2007-2008 Media Community Leadership award from Mental Health America of Northeast Florida.

Kevin was born and raised in Michigan, earning his degree in political science from Eastern Michigan University. 

When not at work, you may run into Kevin on Saturday mornings walking around the Riverside Arts Market or in a local park.

Jessica Palombo / WJCT

Wednesday on First Coast Connect we spoke with Democratic 4th District Congressional candidate Monica DePaul who is looking to challenge incumbent Republican Congressman John Rutherford (01:18).  

WJCT News Director Jessica Palombo and reporter Ryan Benk talked about the Florida Constitution Revision Commission’s Tuesday afternoon meeting in Jacksonville (32:23).  

Local real estate entrepreneur Shankar Thayver told us about his new online portal Trintals (37:22).

We heard about Saturday’s Riverside Craft Beer Festival with Community PedsCare Clinical Manager Amanda Spence and festival chairman Chris Croft (46:00).               

Tuesday on First Coast Connect we spoke with Ron Davis, father of slain Jacksonville teen Jordan Davis, on the recent rash of children shot in Jacksonville and the renewed call for more gun control (01:15).  

Angie Nixon with Party, Benefit & Jam (PB&J) told us about their upcoming Jam Sessions on major issues facing Jacksonville (27:20).

PS 27 Ventures’ Christine Lee McFaul spoke about their upcoming Female Founders Forum (38:00).  

Director of Events and Programming with Friends of Hemming Park Christina Parrish Stone told us about this weekend’s Get Down(town) event at Hemming (46:00).         



Monday on First Coast Connect we spoke with Emmanuel Martinez, data reporter at Reveal from The Center for Investigative Reporting on the center’s investigation into modern day redlining in northeast Florida (01:08).

We spoke with Jocelyn and David Williamson who as part of a coalition sued Brevard County over its invocation rules at County Commission meetings and won (25:32).

We heard about a new program to care for St. Johns County patients with advanced illness from Flagler Hospital President Jason Barrett and Community Hospice & Palliative Care President and CEO Susan Ponder-Stansel (36:42).

Cole Pepper brought us the latest sports news (46:00).    


Friday on First Coast Connect our weekly Media Roundtable featured Florida Times-Union reporter Tessa Duvall, contributor Fred Matthews, WJCT Business Analyst John Burr and Beaches Leader columnist Jon McGowan (01:21).  

Florida Blue and Guidewell CEO Pat Geraghty talked about grief counseling they are making available to anyone in the wake of the Parkland shooting and his recent trip to the World Economic Forum and Davos (46:00).   


Thursday on First Coast Connect in the wake of the mass school shooting in Parkland we spoke with WLRN Miami Reporter Caitie Siwalski who was on the scene and Chad McIntyre, manager of TraumaOne Flight Services at UF Health Jacksonville Medical Center (01:03).       

We heard an update on the Medical Marijuana dispensary business in Jacksonville with Daniel Locke from Compassionate Alternative Care (30:14).

Jacksonville Business Journal Editor Timothy Gibbons told us about a story this week looking at the rise of craft breweries in Jacksonville (38:03).   

On the heels of a $2 million Bansky work of art on display at the downtown Main Library we spoke the Executive Producer of the film Saving Bansky (46:00).  

Wednesday on First Coast Connect we heard the latest news of what we can expect in the future at the Cecil Spaceport with director Todd Lindner (01:24).  

In our latest Going Green segment we spoke with Kaitlyn Dietz, the coastal training coordinator of the GTM Research Reserve (24:34).

We heard about the upcoming documentary Jacksonville WHO which tells the story of Jacksonville University’s improbable run to the men’s basketball NCAA championship game in 1970 and its impact on the city with producer Frank Pace and Basketball Hall of Famer Artis Gilmore (32:43).    

We learned about this weekend’s MLK Oratorical Contest with Upsilon Lambda Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Chapter President James Kelly (46:00). 

The Jacksonville Jaguars

Tuesday on First Coast Connect we spoke Jacksonville Jaguars President Mark Lamping about the tarps coming off Everbank Field and other changes on the way (01:10).

Our latest segment of Moveable Feast featured Walter Bianchi of Gusto Restaurant (32:32).

First Coast Connect Book Club leader Stacy Goldring highlighted Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None (36:41).

We heard about some upcoming events to raise funds for Catholic Charities of Jacksonville with Executive Director Lauren Weedon Hopkins (46:00).  

Monday on First Coast Connect we spoke with Florida Politics reporter AG Gancarski about the most recent news regarding the possible sale of JEA and the latest poll numbers showing Florida voters know little about the candidates for Governor in both parties (01:15).

We spoke with Jeannette Walls, bestselling author of The Glass Castle ahead of her talk next week in Jacksonville (27:23).

With Valentine’s Day around the corner we heard a live in-studio performance from the Sapphire Quartet (38:54).

Cole Pepper brought us the latest sports news including next weekend’s Daytona 500, golf, men’s college basketball and the Winter Olympics (46:00).  


Friday on First Coast Connect our weekly Media Roundtable featured Dan Scanlan from the Florida Times-Union, Folio Weekly editor Claire Goforth and Dave Cawton from the Financial News and Daily Record (01:13).

We heard about this weekend’s STEM and Health Expo and River City Science Academy with coordinator Sarah Niss (46:00).


Thursday on First Coast Connect we spoke with Mike Binder, the head of the University of North Florida’s Public Opinion Research Lab, about the university’ latest polling numbers regarding a potential race between Sen. Bill Nelson and Gov. Rick Scott and other issues (01:14).  

We heard about the upcoming production of George Bernard Shaw’s Mrs. Warren’s Profession at Jacksonville University with actresses Deborah Jordan, who also heads the acting department, and sophomore Sarah Stepp (32:37).     

We learned about the upcoming fundraiser for Friday Musicale with Executive Director Naomi Sheridan and venue director Jeff Tawny (46:00). 

Wednesday  on First Coast Connect we spoke with retirement planner Adam Wolf about the recent volatility in the stock market and how it could affect your retirement portfolio (01:13).

Local attorney and former Secret Service agent Michael Stanski talked about the importance of the Nunes memo in Washington (11:11).

Executive Director of Episcopal Children Services Connie Stophel and Board president Derrick Smith told us about their upcoming Children’s Champion Awards, and political consultant Obi Umunna told us about raising funds to bring  students in Jacksonville to see the movie Black Panther (46:00).

Tuesday on First Coast Connect we spoke with author and urban planner Peter Kageyama on how to get people to love the cities where they live (01:18).  

Jacksonville University Associate Professor Sawsan Tabbaa talked about the Give Kids a Smile program (30:28).   

Comedian and actor Colin Quinn joined us ahead of his performance this month at the Ponte Vedra Concert Hall (46:00).     

Kevin Meerschaert / WJCT

Monday on First Coast Connect we spoke with WJCT President and CEO David McGowan (1:10).

Commentator Jay Solomon spoke about the importance of civics education (28:52).  

We heard about the upcoming PBS’s American Experience documentary The Gilded Age with Nell Irving Painter, a Princeton University Edwards Professor of American History, Emerita. (32:28).

Cole Pepper brought us the latest sports news (46:38).        


Friday on First Coast Connect our weekly Media Roundtable featured Florida Times-Union reporter David Bauerlein, WJCT business analyst John Burr, Jacksonville Business Journal editor Timothy Gibbons and WJCT contributor Fred Matthews (01:13).   


Mayo Clinic Cardiologist Dr. Sabrina Phillips and Florida Blue Market President Darnell Smith talked about Friday being National Wear Red Day to raise awareness of heart disease among women (39:02).  

Mayo Clinic Dr. Aubrey Thompson and former TV anchor Donna Deegan joined us to talk about breast cancer research and the upcoming 26.2 with Donna marathon (46:00).    

Kevin Meerschaert / WJCT

Thursday on First Coast Connect we spoke with University of North Florida professor Matt Corrigan and UNF students Ryan McDonagh and Todd Higginbotham about a new UNF study on how to get more millennials to move to downtown Jacksonville (01:14).   

Our latest edition of Art Attack featured Lee Hamby of Five and Dime Theatre, Shawana Brooks with the Jacksonville Public Library, Jamario Stills from Phase 8 Theater Company, Alicia Somers, VP at Regions Bank and Katie McCaughan of Jacksonville Dance Theatre (31:42).  

Kerry Speckman told us about some of the events coming to the Jacksonville area in February (46:00).