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Jim DeFede

Jim DeFede CBS Miami

Jim DeFede joined CBS News Miami in January 2006 and serves as an investigative reporter for the station, as well as a host of its Sunday morning public affairs program "Facing South Florida."

He has covered Florida politics since 1991, including every governor's race in the state since 1994, as well as the 2016 presidential campaigns of Donald Trump, Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio.

For CBS News Miami, DeFede has reported, written and produced more than a dozen documentaries, including "The Everglades: Where Politics, Money and Race Collide," a one-hour film exploring the 2016 environmental disaster in Florida caused by toxic blue-green algae in Lake Okeechobee.

In 2019, he produced for CBS the short film, "The Homestead Letters" exploring the reaction of local school kids who learn they were living next to a migrant detention camp housing children separated from their parents at the border by the Trump Administration.

In 2020, he produced, "The Secret World of Greyhound Training," which revealed how many greyhound racing dogs were being clandestinely trained at facilities in Texas, Oklahoma and Nebraska using the outlawed practice of allowing the dogs to chase, catch and then kill live rabbits.

In 2021 and 2022, DeFede produced three hour-long specials on the Surfside building collapse that killed 98 people: "Bonded By Tragedy: 30 Days in Surfside," "Surviving Surfside: Deven's Story," and "Surviving Surfside: Year One."

DeFede has won eight regional Emmy Awards and a Murrow Award since joining CBS.

In 2019 he won the duPont-Columbia Award for the Everglades documentary and was a du-Pont-Columbia finalist in 2023 for "Bonded by Tragedy."

Jim DeFede was born in Brooklyn, New York. Although his family remains in the same rent-controlled apartment building where he was raised, DeFede left Brooklyn when he was 19 to attend Colorado State University.

In 1986, DeFede landed his first job in journalism as a night cops reporter for The Spokesman-Review in Spokane, Washington.

In 1991, he accepted an offer to become a staff writer with the weekly newspaper Miami New Times, where he won numerous awards during his 11-year tenure with the paper.

Between 2002 and 2005, DeFede was a metro columnist for The Miami Herald.

DeFede was a contributing writer for Tina Brown's Talk magazine. His work has also appeared Newsday, Mother Jones, The (London) Independent, The Daily Beast, and The Times of London Sunday Magazine.

His first book, "The Day The World Came To Town: 9/11 in Gander, Newfoundland," was published in 2002 by HarperCollins and was recognized with a 2003 Christopher Award for its ability to "affirm the highest values of the human spirit."

His latest book, "The Chronicles of Willy and Sal" – an anthology of stories he wrote on a pair of high school dropouts who went on to become Miami's so-called Kings of Cocaine – will be published in the Fall of 2023.

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