First Coast Connect

Weekdays 9 a.m. Rebroadcast 8 p.m.

Hosted by Melissa Ross, First Coast Connect is an hour-long call-in program that features local newsmakers, civic and community leaders, artists and people planning a variety of events across Northeast Florida, along with a weekly roundtable of local journalists.

  • Join The Conversation: (904) 549-2937 (Note: This line is only active during the program, 9 -10 a.m.) 
  • Email First Coast Connect

First Coast Connect is sponsored in part by Baptist Health and North Florida TPO.

The twice-a-month Going Green segment is sponsored in part by A1A Solar and the monthly First Coast Success segment is sponsored in part by Iberiabank.

The monthly First Coast Connect Book Club is sponsored in part by San Marco Books and more.

Kevin Meerschaert / WJCT

Wednesday on First Coast Connect we spoke with former First Coast High School student Seth Owen. He’s the gay student who had to move out of his house for refusing to attend his family’s very strict baptist church. Owen’s story inspired a GoFundMe account that raised over $140,000. He’s attending Georgetown University this fall (01:19).

Kevin Meerschaert / WJCT

Tuesday on First Coast Connect we spoke with online travel magazine Thrillist’s Miami editor Matt Meltzer who published a glowing review of Jacksonville last week, calling it a hidden gem and the most misunderstood city in America (01:11).

News Service of Florida

Monday on First Coast Connect we spoke with Florida Politics reporter A.G. Gancarski regarding the future of dog racing in Florida. Last week a circuit judge blocked a proposed constitutional amendment that would ban greyhound racing in Florida (01:13).

Our Friday First Coast Connect Media Roundtable featured WJCT contributor Fred Matthews, Jacksonville Business Journal editor Tim Gibbons, Folio Weekly editor Claire Goforth and WJCT reporter Ryan Benk.

Issues discussed included:

STATE ATTORNEY’S OFFICE / VIA FLORIDA TIMES-UNION

Thursday on First Coast Connect we spoke with local attorney John Phillips about the dropping of charges against former JSO officer Timothy James in the beating of handcuffed teen Elias Campos. Phillips represents Campos (01:12).  

Our latest segment of Art Attack featured:

Kevin Meerschaert / WJCT

Wednesday on First Coast Connect we spoke new Duval County Schools Superintendent Dr. Diana Greene about her goals to improve education results in the district (01:23).

Kevin Meerschaert / WJCT

Tuesday on First Coast Connect we spoke with former Jacksonville Mayor and Democratic Congressional candidate Alvin Brown who is challenging incumbent Al Lawson in the August Florida Primary (01:00).

 

Monday on First Coast Connect we spoke with Jacksonville Daily Record reporter David Cawton about his story on a federal lawsuit filed against Jacksonville-based Fanatics that accuses the company of racial discrimination and harassment (01:05).

Our Friday First Coast Connect Media Roundtable featured Florida Times-Union reporter David Bauerlein, WJCT contributor Charles Griggs and Florida Politics reporter A.G. Gancarski.

Our topics included,

  • Mayor Lenny Curry presenting his budget to the Jacksonville City council with an emphasis on public safety, libraries and infrastructure improvements.

Kevin Meerschaert / WJCT

Thursday on First Coast Connect we were joined by Downtown Vision CEO Jake Gordon who discussed their annual report The State of Downtown and the progress made the past few years in redevelopment projects (01:05).  

LYNSEY WEATHERSPOON FOR NPR

Wednesday on First Coast Connect we were joined by Jacksonville City Councilmember Anna Lopez Brosche to discuss whether Jacksonville should place a memorial to those lynched in Duval County in Hemming Park.

She also talked about a potential run for mayor (01:20).

Lindsey Kilbride / WJCT

Tuesday on First Coast Connect we were joined by Jacksonville Daily Record reporter David Cawton who gave us an overview of the proposed budget presented Monday by Mayor Lenny Curry to the Jacksonville City Council (01:15).   

CNN

Monday on First Coast Connect we heard about the March for our Lives political movement’s upcoming Road to Change rally Saturday at the Jacksonville Landing with teen activists Mia Cleary and Kaelin Kindy (01:14).

Our Friday Media Roundtable on First Coast Connect  featured Florida Times-Union reporter Andrew Pantazi, The Victory’s Jax Engage radio host Angela Spears, Folio Weekly editor Claire Goforth and Beaches Leader columnist Jon McGowan.

Topics discussed included:

WINK-TV

Thursday on First Coast Connect in the wake of Wednesday night’s debate with the five major Democratic candidates for Governor we heard an update on how both the Democratic and Republican races are faring with FSCJ political science professor Daniel Cronrath (01:15).

Pages