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First Coast Connect

2/27/19: Human Trafficking; Boston Marathon Hero; The Amp

Delores Barr Weaver Policy Center
File of an anti-trafficking march

The recent arrest of New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft in South Florida has thrown a spotlight on human trafficking in the state. Kraft was busted paying for sex acts at a spa, and two other prominent financiers were also implicated in the prostitution sting.

Florida is a hotbed for trafficking, ranked third in the nation in the number of cases. And, authorities say amidst the South Florida playground of the wealthy filled with golf courses and beaches, hides a potential human trafficking ring spanning from China to the U.S.

Here in North Florida, the Delores Barr Weaver Policy Center is at the helm of Florida’s new Open Doors Outreach Network; when a survivor is identified, they’re immediately paired with a survivor mentor, a regional advocate and a clinician. Dr. Lawanda Ravoira, President & CEO, the Delores Barr Weaver Policy Center; and Jamie Rosseland, Survivor Mentor with the Delores Barr Weaver Policy Center, joined us with more on trafficking in the state and efforts to combat it.

Credit Jacksonville Women's Network
Dr. Natalie Stavas

Boston Marathon Hero

Dr. Natalie Stavas is a prominent physician, humanitarian, and one of the heroes of the Boston Marathon.

She was running the marathon with her dad when terrorists struck, detonating homemade pressure cooker bombs near the finish line. The attack killed three people and injured several hundred others.

But thanks to Stavas, and several other physicians in the crowd, many survived and avoided more serious injury. She is speaking in Jacksonville Thursday night at the Jacksonville Women’s Network 2019 Speakers Forum, and joined us with a preview.

Credit Heather Schatz/ WJCT
Ross and Murphy with "The Amp" merchandise outside Studio 5.

The Amp

As it gears up for the 2019 concert season, the St. Augustine Amphitheatre unveiled a new brand identity today – adopting “The Amp” as its formal moniker. Ryan Murphy, the General Manager of "The Amp" and Ponte Vedra Concert Hall, joined us with more.

Heather Schatz can be reached at, 904-358-6334 or on Twitter at @heatherschatz.

First Coast Connect
Heather is the senior producer of WJCT 89.9 FM talk shows including First Coast Connect with Melissa Ross, the Florida Roundup and What's Health Got to Do with It?