The March 5, 2007 front page of
The Miami Herald
|Owner(s)||The McClatchy Company|
|Editor||Aminda Marqués Gonzalez|
|Headquarters||3511 NW 91 Ave.
Doral, Florida 33172
The newspaper employs over 800 people in Miami and across several bureaus, including Bogotá, Managua, Tallahassee, Vero Beach, Key West, and shared space in McClatchy's Washington bureau. Its newsroom staff of about 450 includes 144 reporters, 69 editors, 69 copy editors, 29 photographers, five graphic artists (not including page designers), 11 columnists, six critics, 48 editorial specialists, and 18 news assistants. In June 2009, The Miami Herald announced widespread layoffs in June 2008, with plans to cut 250 full-time jobs—17 percent of the newspaper's workforce.
The newspaper has been awarded 20 Pulitzer Prizes since beginning publication in 1903. Well-known columnists are Pulitzer-winning political commentator Leonard Pitts, Jr., Pulitzer-winning reporter Mirta Ojito, humorist Dave Barry and novelist Carl Hiaasen. Other columnists include Fred Grimm and Edwin Pope. Alexandra Villoch is the publisher, and Aminda Marqués Gonzalez is the executive editor.
The newspaper averages 88 pages daily and 212 pages Sunday. The Miami Herald's coverage of Latin American and Hispanic affairs is widely considered among the best of U.S. newspapers.
The Miami Herald also participates in Politifact Florida a website that focuses on the truth about Florida issues; with the Tampa Bay Times, which created the Politifact concept. The Miami Herald and the Times share resources on news stories related to Florida.
The first edition was published September 15, 1903, as The Miami Evening Record. After the recession of 1907, the newspaper had severe financial difficulties. Its largest creditor was Henry Flagler. Through a loan from Henry Flagler, Frank B. Shutts, who was also the founder of the law firm Shutts & Bowen, acquired the paper and renamed it The Miami Herald on December 1, 1910. Although it is the longest continuously published newspaper in Miami, the earliest newspaper in the region was The Tropical Sun, established in 1891. The Miami Metropolis, which later became The Miami News was founded in 1896 and the Herald's longest competitor until 1988 when it went out of business.
During the Florida land boom of the 1920s, The Miami Herald was the largest newspaper in the world as measured by lines of advertising. During The Great Depression in the 1930s,The Herald came close to receivership but recovered.
On October 25, 1939, John S. Knight, son of a noted Ohio newspaperman, bought The Herald from Frank B. Shutts. Knight became editor and publisher and made his brother, James L. Knight, the business manager. The Herald had 383 employees. Lee Hills arrived as city editor in September 1942. He later became The Herald's publisher and eventually chairman of Knight-Ridder Inc., a position he held until 1981.
The Miami Herald International Edition, printed by partner newspapers throughout the Caribbean and Latin America, began in 1946. It is currently commonly available at resorts in the Caribbean countries such as the Dominican Republic and though printed by the largest local newspaper Listín Diario it is not available outside such tourist areas. It was later extended to Mexico in 2002.
The Herald won its first Pulitzer Prize in 1950, for its reporting on Miami's organized crime. Its circulation was 176,000 daily and 204,000 on Sundays. On August 19, 1960, construction began on the Herald building on Biscayne Bay. Also on that day, Alvah H. Chapman, started work as James Knight's assistant. Chapman was later promoted to Knight-Ridder chairman and chief executive officer. The Herald moved into its new building at One Herald Plaza without missing an edition on March 23–24, 1963. Publication of a Spanish language supplemental insert named El Herald began in 1976. It was renamed El Nuevo Herald in 1987, and in 1998 became an independent publication.
The paper won a landmark press freedom decision in Miami Herald Publishing Co. v. Tornillo (1974). In the case, a political candidate, Pat Tornillo Jr., had requested that the Herald print his rebuttal to an editorial criticizing him, citing Florida's "right-to-reply" law, which mandated that newspapers print such responses. Represented by longtime counsel Dan Paul, the Herald challenged the law, and the case was appealed to the Supreme Court. The Court unanimously overturned the Florida statute under the Press Freedom Clause of the First Amendment, ruling that "Governmental compulsion on a newspaper to publish that which 'reason' tells it should not be published is unconstitutional." The decision showed the limitations of a 1969 decision, Red Lion Broadcasting Co. v. Federal Communications Commission—in which a similar "Fairness Doctrine" had been upheld for radio and television—establishing that broadcast and print media had different Constitutional protections.
In 2003, The Miami Herald and El Universal of Mexico City created an international joint venture, and in 2004 they together launched The Herald Mexico, a short-lived English language newspaper for readers in Mexico. Its final issue was published in May 2007.
On July 27, 2005, former Miami city commissioner Arthur Teele walked into the main lobby of Herald headquarters, dropped off a package for columnist Jim DeFede, and asked a security officer to tell Herald columnist Jim DeFede to tell his wife Stephanie he 'loved her' before pulling out a gun and committing suicide. His suicide happened the day the Miami New Times, a weekly newspaper, published salacious details of Teele's alleged affairs, including allegations Teele had sex and used cocaine with a transsexual prostitute. Shortly before committing suicide, Teele had had a telephone conversation with DeFede. DeFede recorded this call without Teele's knowledge, illegal under Florida law. DeFede admitted to Herald management that he had taped the call. Although the paper used quotes from the tape in its coverage, DeFede was fired the next day for violating the paper's code of ethics and was likely guilty of a felony. Many journalists and readers of the Herald disagreed with the decision to fire rather than suspend DeFede, arguing that it was made in haste and that the punishment was disproportionate to the offense. 528 journalists, including about 200 current and former Herald staffers, called on the Herald to reinstate DeFede, but the paper's management refused to back down. The state attorney's office later declined to file charges against the columnist, holding that the potential violation was "without a (living) victim or a complainant."
On September 8, 2006, Miami Herald's president Jesús Díaz Jr. fired three journalists because they had allegedly been paid by the United States Government to work in anti-Cuba propaganda TV and radio channels. The three were Pablo Alfonso, Wilfredo Cancio Isla and Olga Connor. Less than a month later, and following the pressure of the Cuban community in Miami, Díaz resigned after reinstating the fired journalists. Nevertheless, he continues claiming that such payments, especially if coming from organisms of the state, violate the principles of journalistic independence. At least seven other journalists that do not work at the Herald, namely Miguel Cossio, Carlos Alberto Montaner, Juan Manuel Cao, Ariel Remos, Omar Claro, Helen Aguirre Ferre, Paul Crespo and Ninoska Perez-Castellón, were also paid for programs on Radio Martí or TV Martí, both financed by the government of the United States through the Broadcasting Board of Governors, receiving a total of between 15,000 and 175,000 USD since 2001.
In May 2011, the paper announced it had sold 14 acres (5.7 ha) of Biscayne Bayfront land surrounding its headquarters in the Omni district of Downtown Miami for $236 million, to a Malaysian resort developer, Genting Malaysia Berhad; McClatchy announced that the Herald and El Nuevo Herald would be moving to another location by 2013. In May 2013, the paper moved to a new building in suburban Doral.
The Miami Herald sponsors several community involvement projects. The Silver Knight Awards have been held every spring since 1959. The awards are given in several categories to high school seniors who are nominated by faculty committees in their schools. Typical nominees will not only have excelled in their classroom studies but also served to better their community in some way. 18,000 students have been recognized since the program was started.
The Wish Book program lets people from the community who are suffering from hardships of varying types ask for help from the readers. Wishes have included asking for donations to buy medical equipment for a sick child, help with renovations to make a home wheelchair accessible, monetary donation to an impoverished family dealing with cancer treatments, and help to an elderly resident wanting to learn how to use a computer. Readers may make donations to specific causes or to the program at large.
The Miami Herald also co-sponsors spelling bees and athletic awards in South Florida. The Tropic section and its columnist Dave Barry also run a unique annual puzzlehunt in the Miami area called the Herald Hunt.
Silver Knight Awards
The Silver Knight Awards are achievement awards granted to a select group of high school seniors in South Florida each year. They have been given in Miami-Dade County, Florida since 1959 and in Broward County, Florida since 1984. Broward and Miami-Dade county awards are given in separate ceremonies. The awards aim to recognize recipients' "record of service to school and community." The awards are given in fifteen categories—Art, Athletics, Business, Digital & Interactive, Drama, English & Literature, General Scholarship, Journalism, Mathematics, Music & Dance, Science, Social Science, Speech, Vocational-Technical and World Languages. Each high school is permitted to nominate one student per category. The winner in each category receives $2000, a Silver Knight statue, a medallion, and a free airplane ticket to travel inside the US. Three honorable mentions in each category receive engraved plaques and $500.
Miami Herald Media Company, which owns the Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald, is headquartered in Doral, Florida. It is located in a two story, 160,000-square-foot (15,000 m2) building that previously was the U.S. Southern Command center. The newspaper uses 110,000 square feet (10,000 m2) of space for office purposes. As of 2013 there are 650 people working there. The newspaper had purchased land adjacent to the headquarters to build the 119,000-square-foot (11,100 m2) printing plant.
The previous headquarters, One Herald Plaza, were located on a 14-acre (5.7 ha) plot in Biscayne Bay, Miami. This facility opened in March 1963. In 2011 the Genting Group, a Malaysian company, offered to pay the Miami Herald Media Co. $236 million for the current headquarters property. The company began scouting for a new headquarters location after finalizing the sale. The then president and publisher of the media company, David Landsberg, stated that it was not necessary at that point to be located in the city center, and remaining there would be too expensive. The newspaper moved to its current Doral headquarters in May 2013. On April 28, 2014, demolition began on the iconic building on Biscayne Bay between the MacArthur and Venetian causeways.
- 2009: Breaking News Photography, Patrick Farrell, "for his provocative, impeccably composed images of despair after Hurricane Ike and other lethal storms caused a humanitarian disaster in Haiti."
- 2007: Local Reporting, Debbie Cenziper, "for reports on waste, favoritism and lack of oversight at the Miami housing agency that resulted in dismissals, investigations and prosecutions." In 2007, Cenziper's investigation was featured in the PBS documentary series Exposé: America's Investigative Reports in an episode entitled "Money For Nothing."
- 2004: Commentary, Leonard Pitts, Jr., "for his fresh, vibrant columns that spoke, with both passion and compassion, to ordinary people on often divisive issues."
- 2001: Breaking news reporting, "for its coverage of the seizure of Elián González by federal agents."
- 1999: Investigative reporting, staff, "for its detailed reporting that revealed pervasive voter fraud in a city mayoral election that was subsequently overturned."
- 1996: Editorial cartooning, Jim Morin
- 1993: Meritorious public service, staff, "for coverage that not only helped readers cope with Hurricane Andrew's devastation but also showed how lax zoning, inspection and building codes had contributed to the destruction.";
- 1993: Commentary, Liz Balmaseda, "For her commentary from Haiti about deteriorating political and social conditions and her columns about Cuban-Americans in Miami."
- 1991: Spot News Reporting, staff, "for stories profiling a local cult leader, his followers, and their links to several area murders."
- 1988: Commentary, Dave Barry, "for his consistently effective use of humor as a device for presenting fresh insights into serious concerns."
- 1988: Feature photography, Michel duCille, "for photographs portraying the decay and subsequent rehabilitation of a housing project overrun by the drug crack."
- 1987: National reporting, staff, "for its exclusive reporting and persistent coverage of the U.S.-Iran-Contra connection."
- 1986: Spot news photography, Michel duCille and Carol Guzy;
- 1986: General reporting, Edna Buchanan
- 1983: Editorial writing, the editorial board, " for its campaign against the detention of illegal Haitian immigrants by federal officials."
- 1981: International reporting, Shirley Christian, "for her dispatches from Central America."
- 1980: Feature writing, Madeleine Blais, "for 'Zepp's Last Stand.'"
- 1976: General reporting, Gene Miller
- 1967: Specialized Reporting, Gene Miller
- 1951: Meritorious public service, staff, "for [its] crime reporting during the year."
- "Miami Herald 2011" (PDF). Miamiheraldadvertising.com. Retrieved 2013-10-22.
- "Contact Us." Miami Herald. Retrieved on January 24, 2014. "The Miami Herald 3511 NW 91 Ave. Miami, FL 33172"
- Merrill, John C. and Harold A. Fisher. The world's great dailies: profiles of fifty newspapers (1980) pp 196-201
- Miami Herald to reduce its staff by 250
- "The McClatchy Organization: The Miami Herald". The McClatchy Organization. Retrieved 2006-12-26.
- Miami Herald Media Company
- "PolitiFact Florida | Sorting out the truth in politics". Politifact.com. Retrieved 2012-10-22.
- Smiley 1974. Page 54.
- Dennis Hevesi (February 2, 2010). "Dan Paul, 85, leading lawyer for press freedom". Boston Globe. – via HighBeam Research (subscription required). Retrieved 24 April 2013.
- Richard Campbell; Christopher R. Martin; Bettina Fabos (20 February 2012). Media and Culture with 2013 Update: An Introduction to Mass Communication. Bedford/St. Martin's. p. 498. ISBN 978-1-4576-0491-1. Retrieved 24 April 2013.
- "MIAMI HERALD PUBLISHING CO. v. TORNILLO, 418 U.S. 241 (1974)". via FindLaw. Archived from the original on April 24, 2013. Retrieved April 24, 2013.
- "US 'paid anti-Cuba journalists'". BBC News. 2006-09-09. Retrieved 2006-09-09.
- "Herald publisher resigns". Sun Sentinel.[dead link]
- "10 Miami journalists take U.S. pay". Miami Herald.[dead link]
- Hanks, Douglas (May 27, 2011). "Miami Herald parent sells land for $236 million; newspaper operations unaffected". The Miami Herald. Retrieved 2011-05-31.
- "Miami Herald completes move from downtown Miami". Miami Herald. May 17, 2013. Retrieved May 17, 2013.
- Beasley, Adam. "Our new home: Miami Herald's Doral headquarters reflects a modern reality." Miami Herald. Tuesday June 4, 2013. Retrieved on January 25, 2014.
- "The Miami Herald Moving Project". The Movers US Group. 2011-10-27.
- "Demolition begins on former Miami Herald bayfront building". The Miami Herald. 28 April 2014. Retrieved 29 April 2014.
- Smiley, Nixon. Knights of the Fourth Estate; The Story of the Miami Herald. Miami, FL: E. A. Seeman, 1974. ISBN 0-912458-42-9.
- Politifact Florida
- Journalists for Jim DeFede petition
- "Audit Bureau of Circulations ranking (2007)". Archived from the original on 2007-04-29.
- Miami Metropolis, freely available with full text and full page images in the Florida Digital Newspaper Library