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First Coast Connect

1/24/2018: Aundra Wallace; Holocaust Memorial Day; Generation Works; EDDY Awards

Kevin Meerschaert

Wednesday on First Coast Connect we spoke with Downtown Investment Authority CEO Andrea Wallace about current and upcoming development projects (01:11).   

As we approach International Holocaust Memorial Day we spoke with local third-generation Holocaust survivor Dana Rogozinski (28:03).  

We learned about the upcoming Generation Works project with Generation W founder Donna Orender and Kristi Branden, Chief Development Officer at Hubbard House (36:25).

We met Duval County teachers Stephanie Bellino and Will Smith. They are finalists for the annual EDDY awards along with Zak Champagne who is with the Jacksonville Public Education Fund.      

Aundra Wallace

Earlier this month theJacksonville Downtown Investment Authority approved seeking a Request for Proposals to see if any private investors are interested in building a new convention center and hotel on the site of the the old county courthouse and city hall annex.

Other projects are on the drawing board as well, from Shad Khan’s Shipyards development to the District on the Southbank, the Laura Street Trio, a new Hotel Indigo downtown numerous projects in Brooklyn.

Holocaust Memorial Day

This Saturday marks International Holocaust Memorial Day. First designated by the United Nations, the goal of the occasion is to make sure the memory of the Holocaust is kept alive to prevent genocide from ever happening again. The #WeRemember campaign has reached 45 countries.

It’s become a more urgent need than ever. A disturbing rise in anti-Semitism is being documented right now in a series of incidents around the world.

Rogozinski grew up in Jacksonville. Her grandparents survived Auschwitz and Birkenau.

Generation Works

It’s a dedicated day of service led by women and girls - men and boys are also welcome - with the objective of bringing sustainable change and impact to our neighborhoods here in Northeast Florida.

Volunteers will wire, weld, wash, and work their magic to transform our city for the greater good.

Generation Works is coming up with a slew of citywide projects on Saturday, Feb. 3.

EDDY Awards

Every year the Jacksonville Public Education Fund celebrates the best teachers in Duval County. The top five finalists will be eligible to participate in a tailored summer fellowship program.

The 2018 Teacher of the Year will be announced February 2 at theEDDY Awards at the Hyatt Regency the winner will go on to compete in the state award ceremony.

Kevin Meerschaert can be reached at, 904-358-6334 or on Twitter at @KMeerschaertJax.

Kevin Meerschaert has left WJCT for new pursuits. He was the producer of First Coast Connect until October of 2018.