Up Front - The Publisher's Column
Andy Corty, Publisher
Only rarely do we see change on the editorial/art staff of Florida Trend, and that longevity is one of the magazine's strengths. We start 2012 with one of those rare situations.
Cynthia Barnett was at the Raleigh News and Observer in North Carolina when she moved back to Florida in 1998 to work for Florida Trend. A fifth generation Floridian, Cynthia felt a desire to come home to a state that is in her blood.
Cynthia's love of Florida is reflected in her 14 years of reporting for Florida Trend. She uncovered a highway-
contracting scam that was bilking the DOT (and you and me!) out of millions of dollars, and she took our readers to fascinating places like the Mormon-owned Deseret Ranch in central Florida.
She never planned to stay at the magazine this long. What kept her with us was the opportunity to write in-depth articles about Florida for an audience that cares about the state as much as she does. In her time here, Cynthia became an expert on water issues, writing two books on the topic. Her latest is "Blue Revolution: Unmaking America's Water Crisis," which is receiving rave reviews.
In addition to becoming a full-time author, Cynthia plans to spend more time with her children. But she'll continue to be part of the magazine's coverage, producing the Around the State section for the northeast region, where she lives. "Cynthia has gone beyond good reporting — she's made a substantive contribution to the state," says editor Mark Howard.
Replacing Cynthia this month is Lilly Rockwell, a talented reporter who moved to Tallahassee in 2009 from Texas, where she was a business writer for the Austin American-Statesman. Since moving here, she has worked both as a freelancer and, more recently, for the News Service of Florida. One of the first things she did after arriving in Florida was subscribe to Florida Trend — to learn as much as she could about the state. That definitely scored her a few points in the job interview. Her work demonstrates a substantive and probing approach to the important issues Florida faces. We're lucky to have her with us.
We'll see more "goings and comings" in the state Legislature thanks to once-a-decade redistricting. Associate editor Amy Keller points out in our 2012 legislative preview that redistricting is bound to be messy because new amendments calling for compact districts are colliding with special interests trying to create safe districts — for Democrats, for Republicans, for Hispanics, for African-Americans and so on. Indeed, some incumbents will be placed together in the same district and other incumbents will be written out of districts where they reside.
Florida Trend Senior Market Director Maggie Caruso joined Gov. Rick Scott on his trade mission to Brazil.
The influence of Brazil is felt throughout Florida. Brazil has displaced the United Kingdom as the No. 1 source for overseas tourists. Its people and companies are fast becoming top investors in the business of Florida. Brazilians make airplanes in Florida, purchase real estate here, manufacture steel, construct major buildings, operate banks and own restaurant chains.
In fact, Brazil has become such an important trading partner that Gov. Rick Scott led a 200-person trade mission to São Paulo just last fall. The idea, of course, is that there's more in the Brazilian pipeline for Florida.
— Andy Corty