Ryan Benk

REPORTER / HOST "Indie Endeavour"

Ryan Benk joined WJCT News in 2015 after working as a news researcher and reporter for NPR affiliate WFSU in Tallahassee.

Originally from Miami, he graduated with a bachelor's in English literature from Florida State University. During his time in Tallahassee, Ryan also worked as a policy and research analyst for legislative-research firm LobbyTools.

When he’s not tracking down news, Ryan likes watching films, writing fiction and poetry, and exploring Florida's natural beauty.

Ryan is also the host of "Indie Endeavor."

Station Four

A large donation from Jacksonville philanthropists is helping Rotary International toward its goal of eradicating polio.

On Monday at the Omni hotel, former Northeast Florida Rotary Governor Tommy Grimes announced a very generous gift.

“Delores Barr Weaver and J. Wayne Weaver have made a $250,000 donation to the eradication of polio,” Gilmore said.

Tuesday marks an entire year since Africa last reported a case of the disease.

It’s a warm Friday afternoon on Florida State University’s campus in Tallahassee. Maintenance workers are cleaning the sidewalks with pressure washers in front of one of the school’s campus coffee shops. Students here are reacting to the university’s attempt to “clean up” its iconic Osceola emblem.

Sophomore Carlene Gonzalez-Brown isn’t sure why the university felt the need to change the logo. She feels more emotionally connected to the classic Osceola head but she admits ultimately what and where she studies is more important than the logo that represents the school.

Florida lawmakers on the Senate Criminal Justice Committee are preparing legislation to patch some of the holes in the state’s criminal justice system that led to the premature release of two Franklin County inmates. The Florida Department of Corrections, Law Enforcement and the Clerks of Court all agree – one of the major problems with the state’s prisoner release procedure is lack of uniformity.

Unlike their national counterparts, Florida State Parks are staying open even though Congress failed to pass a budget Monday. But, that doesn’t mean state parks will be immune to the squeeze of a federal government shutdown.

After a newspaper’s investigative series questioned the effectiveness of Florida’s Sexually Violent Predator Program, the Department of Children and Families commissioned an independent study to gauge its effectiveness. The results of that study were debated by lawmakers and policy experts during a joint Senate session Tuesday.

Monday marked the 15th year the state of Florida has memorialized kids who went missing in the Sunshine State. Officials say the number of missing children is receding but there’s more work to be done.

Florida’s fishing industry is one of the largest in the country and that includes fishing tourism. A new study shows the tourism has an almost $5 billion economic impact in the state.

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