Dave Dunwoody

Journalist/Producer

Dave came to WUWF in September, 2002, after 14 years as News Director at the Alabama Radio Network in Montgomery, Mobile and Birmingham and a total of 27 years in commercial radio. During that time, he also served as Alabama Bureau Chief for United Press International.

The Trion, Georgia native was news director at stations in Anniston, Scottsboro and Fort Payne in Alabama, where he also broadcast football, basketball and baseball play-by-play. Dave also “played the hits” at rock and country music stations in Lafayette, Albany and Rome, Georgia and in Burlington, North Carolina.

During his time at WUWF, Dave has earned a B.A. in Communication Arts/Journalism at the University of West Florida (Class of 2012).  He’s married to the former Linda Shiell, a Pensacola native, and they live in Pensacola with their cats Gigi, Lucy, and Zoe. Dave is also a passionate fan of Georgia Bulldogs, Atlanta Falcons, and West Florida Argonauts football; the Atlanta Braves, Pensacola Blue Wahoos, and Pensacola Ice Flyers.  His hobbies include comedy writing, guitar and computer sports games.

City of Pensacola

The race to decide Pensacola’s second strong-mayor will advance to the November 6 general election, between two high-profile figures in city and county government.

Escambia County Commissioner Grover Robinson led the six-candidate field on Tuesday, garnering 34 percent of the vote. He and City Councilman Brian Spencer – who was second with 21 percent will meet in the runoff. The win for Robinson comes almost a year after starting his campaign.

Pensacola-Tallahassee Catholic Diocese

A second priest in the Pensacola-Tallahassee Diocese — this one based in Pensacola — has been removed from the pulpit.

Bishop William Wack has asked Monsignor James Flaherty to “step away from his duties” in a number of offices, including as judicial vicar and director of priestly formation.

Neither Wack nor Flaherty was available for comment on Monday.

Dave Dunwoody, WUWF Public Media

Out of the 13 million registered voters in Florida, about two million have already cast ballots for Tuesday’s primary, surpassing totals from previous years. Turnout was also reported to be up in western Panhandle.

As of Monday morning, about 1.2 million voters mailed it in, and 659,000 took advantage of early voting, which wrapped up on Saturday. Democrats used a final weekend surge to exceed Republicans by 20,000 in early voting, while the GOP led by 65,000 in absentee ballots cast.

Haas Center

The Haas Center at the University of West Florida is out with its first-ever political poll, focusing on the gubernatorial and U.S. Senate races.

The survey was conducted from July 30-August 13, involving 610 respondents in 18 Panhandle counties.

“We wanted to focus on something that had a statewide presence, but we also focus regionally. So our poll only goes through the Panhandle, a little bit past Tallahassee,” said Haas Assistant Director Amy Newburn.

Dave Dunwoody, WUWF Public Media

In WUWF's continuing visits with Pensacola-area candidates, we spoke with Philip Ehr, who’s seeking the Democratic nomination in the 1st District Congressional race in  his first run for public office.

First of all, there’s this little matter of party affiliation. For nearly four decades, Ehr was a Republican.

“I registered in a closed primary state – in my case Maryland – at 18 years old and went with the Republican Party for various reasons,” said Ehr. “Family tradition, some cultural issues; and I stuck with it through my service in the Navy.”

npr.org

In Part Four of our year-long series “1968: Year of Discontent,” the Democratic National Convention was held in Chicago in August 50 years ago – becoming a microcosm of the turmoil felt across the nation.

With President Lyndon Johnson on the sidelines and an open seat in the White House, the Democrats were tasked with finding a challenger to Richard Nixon -- who had won the Republican presidential nomination in Miami Beach three weeks earlier.

Dave Dunwoody, WUWF Public Media

Cris Dosev is making another run for Congress, seeking the Republican nomination for Florida House Distrct-1 for the second straight election. He recently sat down with WUWF’s Dave Dunwoody.

In 2016, Dosev placed second in the GOP primary with 25 percent of the vote, falling short to eventual winner Matt Gaetz’ 33 percent in the crowded field. That race was for an open seat, and two years later it’s a rematch with Gaetz now the incumbent. Because of that, Dosev says his strategy has changed significantly.

stampedfilmfest.com

Pensacola Little Theater will play host to the 7th annual STAMPED Film Festival, this Thursday through Saturday.

The festival began in 2012 at the University of West Florida. According to Board President David Newton, it uses “the unique power of film” to strike down stereotypes and open up dialogue about the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Questioning community.

Pensacola-Tallahassee Catholic Diocese

  

The current sexual misconduct scandal involving hundreds of Catholic priests in Pennsylvania is being overshadowed locally by a similar case involving a priest in the Pensacola-Tallahassee Diocese.

Last week, the local Diocese received an accusation of inappropriate contact 14 years ago involving a minor against Fr. Edward Jones – Pastor of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton and Sacred Heart Parishes near Tallahassee. Bishop William Wack then contacted the diocese’s independent investigator.

goargos.com

The University of West Florida heads into its third year as the second-ranked Division-II team in the nation, in the preseason top 25 poll from American Football Coaches Association. The team held its annual Football Media Day on Wednesday.

Texas A&M Commerce – who beat the Argos 37-27 in the Division II title game last December – sits atop the poll. Minnesota State, Indiana (Pa.), and Fort Hays State round out the top five. From the Gulf South Conference, UWF is joined by West Alabama at number 12 and 19th ranked West Georgia.

wsfu.org

Gov. Rick Scott has declared a state of emergency for parts of southwest Florida, which are dealing with a toxic algae bloom. Meanwhile, officials in the Panhandle are watching the situation.

The pungent algae bloom began in October and at this point, stretches about 150 miles from Naples in the south to Anna Maria Island in the north and appears to be moving northward. The algae has killed tons of marine life, including dolphins, manatees and sea turtles.

myflorida.com

Early voting for the August 28 primary is getting underway this week, with some counties kicking off earlier than others.

Eighteen counties, including Santa Rosa, opened their venues on Monday. Elections Supervisor Tappie Villane says voters can cast their ballots at one of four locations.

“We have our main office here in Milton; Pace Community Center, South Service Center down by the zoo in Gulf Breeze, and also the Tiger Point Community Center,” said Villane. “Eight-thirty to 4:30, and it will run through August the 25th.”

WUWF Public Media

Santa Rosa and Okaloosa are among eight Florida counties in line to receive funding from the 'BearWise' program, to help reduce conflicts between bears and humans.

Bear populations in the state were up in 2015, the latest figures available from Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), compared to the last estimate taken in 2002. There were roughly 120 bears in the western Panhandle of Florida – a 50 percent increase -- and nearly 1,100 in the eastern Panhandle – up 86 percent.

noaa.gov

It appears the Atlantic hurricane season may be less active than previously thought. But those living along the coast should not let down their guard.

NOAA — The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration — is out with its updated outlook of nine to 13 named storms, including four to seven hurricanes. Up to two hurricanes could be "major" with sustained winds of at least 111 mph. Gerry Bell with NOAA's Climate Prediction Center says the reduction was made for three basic reasons.

firefightercancersupport.org

More than 400 fire departments across Florida are getting help in reducing the cancer rate inside the Fire Service.

Nationwide, 70 percent of firefighters who died in the line of duty in 2016 passed away from cancer, according to data from the International Association of Fire Fighters.

Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis – who’s also the state’s fire marshal -- says the cancer rate among firefighters runs 15 percent higher than the general population, and involves all types of the disease.

City of Pensacola

After three years on the job, Eric Olson has stepped down as Pensacola City Administrator. The announcement was made late Friday afternoon, four months before the end of the Ashton Hayward administration. 

The written statement from Hayward gives no details; calls to the Mayor and to Olson seeking comment have not been returned.

Hired as an assistant administrator upon his retirement from the Navy – Olson was named administrator in 2015 – the third person to hold that job in the Hayward administration, after Tamara Fountain and Colleen Castille.

Dave Dunwoody, WUWF Public Media

In our final visit with candidates for Mayor of Pensacola, WUWF’s Dave Dunwoody speaks with broadcasting executive David Mayo.

While this is Mayo’s first attempt at public office, he’s a familiar face with a number of civic organizations – and as General Manager of WHBR TV33 since the station went on the air in 1986.

“There’s just, I suppose, an insatiable desire to serve, and try to make a difference in each life I can come across,” said Mayo. “Help them overcome their life’s’ challenges and their adversities, which we all have.”

floridarevenue.com

Florida’s 17th back-to-school holiday is now underway. As of 12:01 Friday morning, eligible items will be exempt from sales tax until 11:59 p.m. on Sunday.

“It’s probably one of the [bills] that passes 116-0 or 114-0; hard to imagine somebody voting against this bill, when these tax holidays come up, especially back to school. Anything that gives some broad relief to families is a big deal.”  said outgoing state Rep. Clay Ingram, who’s also President and CEO of the Greater Pensacola Chamber of Commerce.

greyhoundadoptionactionalliance.org

A proposed constitutional amendment to ban greyhound racing in Florida is no longer on the November 6 ballot.

Leon County Circuit Judge Karen Gievers sided with greyhound owners and breeders, who argue that the impact of Amendment-13 from the Constitutional Revision Commission would go far beyond the description given to voters.

Dave Dunwoody, WUWF Public Media

In our next visit with those running for Pensacola Mayor, WUWF’s Dave Dunwoody sat down with City Councilman Brian Spencer – the sixth and final piece of the candidate puzzle.

Spencer announced his decision in mid-June not to run for re-election to the Council’s District-6 seat after serving for eight years. Ten days later, he qualified for the Mayor’s race, which was thrown open by Ashton Hayward’s decision not to seek a third term.

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