Ex-‘Miami Herald’ Columnist Defede Rebounds a Year After Firing

By: Joe Strupp

A year after being fired for tape recording a phone conversation with a city official who later committed suicide, former Miami Herald columnist Jim Defede appears to have bounced back in a big way.

After becoming a reporter and commentator for a local CBS television affiliate, the 43-year-old Defede is about to add a morning radio show and a magazine columnist post to his various jobs, according to the Herald.

His former newspaper reports that Defede is poised to sign an agreement with Clear Channel for a three-hour weekday morning show on WINZ-AM (940) to start July 24.

”Whatever people are talking about in South Florida, that’s what I’m going to be talking about,” DeFede told the paper “I’ll have politicians on the show — or at least those brave enough to come on.”

DeFede is also working for the local magazine, LRM — Living Real Miami, the Herald reports. His first column will run in September and he is expected to have an article in the summer issue about Miami Mayor Manny Diaz, LRM editor-in-chief Lori Capullo told the Herald.

DeFede was fired from the Herald last July for tape recording a phone call with suspended Miami Commissioner Arthur Teele Jr. without Teele’s knowledge. Teele later killed himself in The Miami Herald lobby. The firing drew strong criticism of Herald Editor Tom Fiedler for dismissing Defede just hours after the incident and by phone from California. The firing even sparked a Web site aimed at getting Defede his job back.

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