Jessica Meszaros

Host, Reporter

Jessica Meszaros is a reporter and host of All Things Considered for WGCU News.

She won five Florida Associated Press Broadcasters awards in 2017: Two were for light news features, including coverage of the state's wild pig meat industry, and of local conversations about death preparedness. Jessica was also recognized for her live afternoon newscast discussing Florida's controversial death penalty process, and a toxic red tide algae bloom poisoning Southwest Florida's marine life. Her live call-in talk show about LGBT legislation in Florida and the deadliest year for the transgender community also won. And finally, Jessica won as part of the WGCU news team covering a local shooting that left two teens dead

Her story on the state struggling to eradicate diseased and abandoned orange groves won an Edward R. Murrow Regional Award for Excellence in Writing, and second place for Best Writing in PRNDI's Division B category in 2017. 

In 2016, she won two  Murrow regional awards for best newscast and best writing. She also won second place in the 2016 Sunshine State Awards for her general coverage of Florida's environmental issues. 

Jessica was previously a freelance multimedia reporter for Miami’s public radio station, WLRN Radio, for more than two years.

In the summer of 2013, Jessica interned for NPR's All Things Considered  in Washington D.C. She has a background in newspaper reporting from her summer 2014 internship with the Sun-Sentinel in South Florida.  

Jessica graduated from Florida International University with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the Honors College.


Wesley Boone / Courtesy

Researchers don’t know much about a rat species that lives only on Sanibel Island-- the Sanibel Rice Rat. The state lists it as a threatened species, so researchers are taking a fresh look at the population. Federal, state, and local partners plan to study these rats through the next three years.

Divulgação Petrobras / ABr - Agência Brasil

U.S. Representatives from Florida are pushing to extend a ban on oil drilling in the eastern Gulf of Mexico. The new restriction was added to a Department of the Interior appropriations bill this week. That bill is pending in the House.

The current ban is set to expire in 2022, but this move would block drilling in that area four more years.

Jean Hall / Courtesy

CORRECTION: The trash cans on Marco Island beach are the responsibility of Collier County and not the city of Marco Island. 

A natural predator has wiped out all of the nests from a group of shore birds on Marco Island Beach. They come every summer between May and July. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission says it's the largest nesting colony of Black Skimmers in the state. The bird is a species of special concern in Florida because if its low numbers. 

South Florida Water Management District

The South Florida Water Management District and Lee County have partnered to bring back a vital plant in the Caloosahatchee River. Tape Grass has not flourished in the river for about 15 years. Over $100,000 will be spent on the three-year project.

Ted Hoffman / Rural Neighborhoods Inc.

Rural Neighborhoods Inc., a Florida nonprofit, wants to build more than just affordable housing in the blighted area of Immokalee. It wants to build a community for its residents.