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.

Tuesday on First Coast Connect we learned about the upcoming Party Benefit and Jam (PB&J) Jam Session: Women on gender issues with Jam Sessions creator Denise Reagan and speaker Michelle Roberts (01:02).

Charlie Rose.com

Monday on First Coast Connect we spoke with author and political scientist Ian Bremmer about globalism and his latest book US VS THEM: The Failure of Globalism (01:07).

Friday on First Coast Connect our weekly Media Roundtable included Florida Times-Union reporter Andrew Pantazi, WJCT contributor Fred Matthews, Florida Politics reporter A.G. Gancarski and WJCT reporter Lindsey Kilbride.

Kevin Meerschaert / WJCT

Thursday on First Coast Connect we spoke with Congressman Al Lawson (D-FL5), about some of the issues he’s working on in Washington. We also discussed the primary challenge against him by former Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown (01:16).

Kevin Meerschaert / WJCT

Wednesday on First Coast Connect we spoke with Jacksonville City Council President Anna Lopez Brosche about her relationship with Mayor Lenny Curry’s administration, the future of JEA and her future political plans (01:18).

 

Bob Self / Florida Times-Union

Tuesday on First Coast Connect we spoke with Florida Times-Union reporter John Reid on his investigation into the connection between football and concussions and what is being done to prevent and treat them (01:16).

Travis Trice (far right), pictured with Elaine Carson (left) and World Relief Jacksonville CEO Jose Vega, compares the refugee vetting process to "torture."
Dima Vitanova / WJCT

Monday on First Coast Connect  we spoke with Travis Trice with World Relief Jacksonville about the work the organization does to help refugees who relocate to the First Coast and some upcoming fundraisers to benefit the group’s efforts (01:09).

Friday on First Coast Connect our weekly Media Roundtable featured reporter Tessa Duvall from The Florida Times-Union, WJCT contributor and Board Member Charles Griggs, Daily Record reporter David Cawton and Jacksonville Business Journal editor Timothy Gibbons. Their discussion included:

Thursday on First Coast Connect we talked about an upcoming OneJax Civil Discourse event with OneJax Director Nancy Broner and local philanthropist Laurie DeBow (01:12).

Left - Mellimage/Shutterstock.com, center - Montree Hanlue/Shutterstock.com. / right - nasa

Wednesday on First Coast Connect we spoke with climate scientist Dr. Peter Ward about an upcoming government report being prepared by the U.S. Global Change Research Program’s National Climate Assessment (01:08).

We discussed Teach for America and the issues surrounding education with Manager for Teacher Development John Grab and TFA alumni Lynette Jean (26:59) as Jacksonville commemorates the 10th anniversary of the organization.

ArtRepublic founder Jessica Santiago told us about some upcoming projects being planned for the area. (46:00). 

Jacksonville Jaguars

Tuesday on First Coast Connect  we spoke Jacksonville Jaguars President Mark Lamping about the changes coming to the stadium and the proposed entertainment center at the Shipyards and Lot J (01:16).

Moveable Feast featured local legendary chef Matthew Medure (30:30).

Florida Theatre CEO Numa Saesselin talked about the history of the theatre and it’s upcoming annual fundraiser (38:20).

Yuri Gripas/AFP/Getty Images

Monday on First Coast Connect  we spoke with former Special Agent in Charge of Jacksonville’s FBI Field Office Jim Casey about former FBI director James Comey and Comey’s new book (01:11).

Reverend Patricia McElroy and Dr. Terri Andrews from Baptist Health told us about this week’s Faith and Mental Health conference (30:14).

We heard about Thursday’s Dining Out for Life to raise funds for AIDS research with NFAN’s Manuel Andrade and Paige Kelton and Derrick Odom from Action News (38:00).

Cole Pepper told us who the Jaguars may draft this week along with the Armada opening their season on Saturday (46:00).   

Friday on First Coast Connect  our weekly Media Roundtable featured Florida Times-Union Reporter Dan Scanlan, WJCT Business Analyst John Burr, Folio Weekly Editor Claire Goforth and Beaches Leader Columnist Jon McGowan (01:06).

And a living musical legend is coming to the Florida Theatre next week. Melissa interviews the great Johnny Mathis (46:00).

NASA

Thursday on First Coast Connect we spoke with UNF political science and public administration Assistant Professor Josh Gellers and MOSH planetarium director Eddie Whisler about this weekend’s Earth Day (01:08).   

Northeast Florida Regional Council CEO Brian Teeple discussed the Elevate Northeast Florida regional development strategy (33:56).  

And Kerry Speckman told us about some of the events coming up this week (46:00).


Wednesday on First Coast Connect we spoke with Florida Politics reporter A.G. Gancarski regarding the JEA Board of Directors hiring Aaron Zahn as interim CEO (01:10).

Local attorney Wayne Hogan told us about April being national Distracted Driving Awareness Month (28:15).

Hope McMath from Yellow House talked about a new project at the house called Voices Unearthed (38:39).

WJXT anchor Melanie Lawson told us about next week’s She is Fierce! Spring event (46:00).

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