Pete Weitzel, our Director Emeritus is a former managing editor of the Miami Herald, where he worked as a reporter and editor for nearly 40 years. When he was president of the Florida Society of Newspaper Editors in 1984, he established the Florida First Amendment Foundation to serve as a government transparency watchdog and then served as Foundation president until 1995. In that role, he helped draft an amendment to the Florida Constitution guaranteeing citizens a right of access to government records and served on a Florida Supreme Court commission that modified state court rules on court records. He also helped launch the National Freedom of Information Coalition and served as its second president. Working with the American Society of News Editors, he helped launch the first Sunshine Week in 2005. In 1997, he was selected as one of the initial inductees in Florida’s Freedom of Information Hall of Fame. In 2007, he received the John Aubuchon Freedom of the Press Award from the National Press Club for his efforts in support of the public’s right to know. The National Freedom of Information Coalition inducted him into the State Open Government Hall of Fame in 2015.
Broward County General Assignment Reporter, WLRN Public Media
President, Gomes Media Strategies
Retired Editor, The Florida Times-Union
Co-founder, Bellwether Software and IT
Founder & President, Dick Batchelor Management Group, Inc.
Shareholder, Marks Gray P.A.
President, Deeson Media LLC
President and CEO, Florida Press and Association/Intersect Media
President, TLH Consulting Group LLC
Attorney, Thomas & LoCicero
Dean, FAMU School of Journalism & Graphic Communication
Deputy Investigations Editor, Miami Herald
General Counsel, Florida Press Association
Editor, The Daytona Beach News-Journal
President Emeritus, Leadership Florida
Managing Editor, PolitiFact
Retired Editor, Orlando Sentinel
WFSU News Director
Director of Local Media, Southeast, The Associated Press
Pamela C. Marsh, Executive Director
Pamela Marsh served as the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Florida from 2010 to 2015. As U.S. Attorney, Pamela was the lead federal prosecutor in 23 counties, from Alachua to Escambia, and was the first woman appointed to the position. She earned a reputation for investigating and prosecuting cases related to banking, healthcare fraud, public corruption, cybercrime, international and domestic terrorism, as well as human trafficking. Pamela was also selected by the U.S. Attorney General at the Department of Justice to serve on the Attorney General’s Advisory Committee, while also serving on the Subcommittee on Counter-Terrorism and National Security, as well as the White Collar Criminal Subcommittee. With more than twenty years of legal experience, Pamela has worked in both private practices and in governmental positions. A resident of Tallahassee, she was named one of the Tallahassee Democrat’s “25 Women You Need to Know” in 2016. Pamela earned her J.D., cum laude, and B.S. in Foreign Service, magna cum laude, from Georgetown University. She is admitted to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court, U.S. Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit, and the U.S. District Courts for the Northern, Middle, and Southern Districts of Florida.
Virginia Hamrick, Staff Attorney
Virginia Hamrick received her J.D., cum laude, from the University of Florida Levin College of Law. She recently was the Weiss Open Government Fellow at the First Amendment Foundation. During law school, Virginia was a research assistant at the Brechner Center for Freedom of Information where she used public information laws to obtain records from college athletic departments and analyzed speech rights of student-athletes. In addition, she interned for the Honorable Gary R. Jones in the Northern District of Florida and clerked for Ausley McMullen in Tallahassee. Previously, Virginia worked as a television news producer. She graduated summa cum laude from UF’s College of Journalism and Communications.