Jacksonville Journey

  Today on “First Coast Connect,” Florida Times-Union reporter Tessa Duvall joins us to discuss the proposal by Mayor Lenny Curry to merge the Jacksonville Children’s Commission and Jacksonville Journey (01:12). We learned the history of Jacksonville’s Manhattan Beach from The Beaches Museum’s Brittany Cohill (16:58). Local author Ron Whittington told us about his new book, “Free Surface Effect” (36:52), and Wayne Wood from the Jacksonville Historical Society talked the organization’s photo contest (44:34).   

  Today on “First Coast Connect,” our weekly Media Roundtable included Tessa Duval, reporter for the Florida Times-Union; blogger Fred Matthews, WJCT reporter Ryan Benk and Lynn Jones of the Jacksonville Free Press (01:12). We heard about the upcoming comedy event “Solid Laugh Advice” to benefit Stronger Than Stigma with organizer Nick Davis and Stronger Than Stigma Executive Director Gabrielle Magid (39:42), and we heard about this weekend’s Apex Theatre Studio production of “Godspell” with director Ian Mairs including a live, in-studio performance by Joshua K.A. Johnson (44:46), who plays the role of Jesus.   

Ryan Benk / WJCT News

Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry Wednesday announced his plan to consolidate the city’s two major child-welfare programs and focus on those most in need.

Curry, a former Florida Republican Party chairman and self-described fiscal conservative, said a decade ago he changed some of his views on government intervention after meeting a 93-year-old Lakeland woman who was caring for six children.

Ryan Benk / WJCT News

After a weekend shooting took the lives of two women and an infant, Jacksonville Mayor Lenny

Curry said he’s renewing his commitment to public safety.

On Monday, Curry called for an end to senseless violence and for the community to help fight crime.

As politicians and pastors speak out about violent crime in Jacksonville, mourners laid to rest the 13th homicide victim of the year Saturday.

22-month-old Aiden Michael McClendon was shot by a stray bullet January 29 as he sat inside a parked car. Police are investigating the possibly gang-related shooting.

Jacksonville has been Florida’s murder capital on and off for more than a decade now. As Mayor Lenny Curry works to reinvigorate the Jacksonville Journey anti-crime initiative, we examine the city's murder rate and root causes of crime in Jacksonville. Dr. Michael Hallet, professor of criminology and criminal justice at the University of North Florida, joins us.

Tony Webster / Flickr Creative Commons

Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry wants to divert emergency funds from the crime-prevention Jacksonville Journey program to beef up police presence in areas with high violent crime rates.

On Thursday, at the Journey committee’s first meeting since Curry took office, the mayor expressed sorrow at the increasing murder rate in some of the city’s neighborhoods.

Brandon Anderson / Flickr Creative Commons

After hitting a 40-year low in 2011, the number of murders in Jacksonville is increasing, according to police.

But some crime-statistics experts say city streets are still safer than they’ve ever been.

On the December 2015 edition of Policy Matters, host Rick Mullaney speaks with Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams about public safety issues in Duval County, including violent crime, the Jacksonville Journey program, and more.

You can subscribe to the Policy Matters podcast in iTunes.

The Jacksonville Journey has a shorter name along with increased funding. An oversight committee decided Thursday the crime-prevention initiative will now be called the Jax Journey.

Lindsey Kilbride / WJCT News

New Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry dined with City Council members at a City Hall luncheon on his first full day in office, Thursday.


Curry filled the Council in about the status of the city’s budget and talked ideas.



Curry began the meeting by announcing he will be literally unlocking a door that separates City Council from the mayor at City Hall. Curry says the door has been locked up for years and puts up an unnecessary barrier between the legislative and executive branches.

Lindsey Kilbride / WJCT News

As Lenny Curry prepares to transition into the role of Jacksonville mayor, he has subcommittees at work collecting data.

Monday morning’s Prevention, Intervention and At-Risk Youth meeting focused on programs under the banner of the Jacksonville Journey, started under former Jacksonville Mayor John Peyton.


A coalition of clergy groups in Jacksonville is sounding the alarm about violent crime on the city’s streets.

This as the city of Baltimore is cleaning up after riots that erupted after an African-American man died in police custody, his spine nearly severed.

Faith leaders worry the same type of unrest is just under the surface here in our area.

However Pastor Mark Griffin of the city’s A.M.E. Ministers Alliance says he disagrees with calls to institute a 9 p.m. curfew in Jacksonville’s high-crime neighborhoods.