April 13, 2024

Mike Vogel

Florida Trend South Florida Editor • mvogel@floridatrend.com

Mike Vogel

Mike Vogel has reported and written about business in Florida for more than 20 years. He works from Broward County. He is a graduate of West Virginia University and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and, prior to joining Florida Trend in 1999, worked for newspapers in southeast Florida, North Carolina, Georgia, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

Articles by Vogel:

Messi Magic
Seemingly overnight, murals of Lionel Messi popped up on buildings across downtown Miami. Argentinian muralist Maximiliano Bagnasco, who has painted Messi murals around the world, was summoned in July shortly after word broke of the soccer icon's move to Inter Miami and went to work on the side of a mixed-use building near a rising condo development in Wynwood.
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Where the Wild Things Are
Homestead Resistance
Evenings at David Herring's house and farm in Walton County in Northwest Florida are marked by the whining of motors coming on. Herring's farm abuts an 866-acre solar power plant completed this year by FPL. At the close of the day, the motors turn on to reset the panels, which track the sun to maximize power production, so they can face the next day's morning sun. “If you're outside, that's what you hear,” he says.
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Seeking Protection
Three activist groups served notice to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that they intend to sue to force the agency to invoke Endangered Species Act protection for the ghost orchid. The groups are the Institute for Regional Conservation in Hollywood, the Center for Biological Diversity and the National Parks Conservation Association. They say the orchid is threatened by poaching, habitat loss and degradation and by winds from intense hurricanes. The groups say the agency should have made a protection decision in January but the agency workplan indicates a decision won't be made until as late as fall 2026. The orchid is protected at Big Cypress National Preserve and other government and private preserves and sanctuaries.
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The Partly Cloudy State
The Sunshine State nickname is more buzzword than actuality — at least if your business is power generation. Central Florida has 277 days a year — 76% of the calendar — that are cloudy or partly cloudy, notes Linda Ferrone, chief consumer and marketing officer for power provider Orlando Utilities Commission. “It's the partly cloudy state,” Ferrone says. Among large solar-power producing states, “it's very unique to Florida. California and Arizona don't have these challenges.”
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Sowing Solar
As it implemented plans to expand solar power in Florida last year, Florida Power & Light made a huge land purchase, even by its own standard as the state's largest utility. It paid a California investment firm $76.7 million for 10,330 acres of farmland in St. Lucie and Indian River counties on Florida's east coast.
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Helping Babies Thrive
Founders Glenn and Chelly Snow's LactaLogics processes breast milk from donor moms for use in feeding premature babies. The company is locating its headquarters and a processing facility in Port St. Lucie in the former Liberty Medical building on U.S. 1.
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Icon: Phillip Frost
Why did I major in French literature? I had never left the country, and the idea of learning a foreign language was appealing to me. And so, it was an opportunity to major in a subject that would at the same time permit me to take enough science courses so that if I had decided to go to medical school, I had that option.
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Knocked Down, Not Out
On the day in March that Gov. Ron DeSantis signed the Florida Legislature's historic changes in the laws governing the personal injury litigation arena, the chief operating officer of Orlando-based Morgan & Morgan wrote a memo to staff. A ubiquitous advertiser in Florida and nationally, under founder and main pitchman John “For the People” Morgan, the firm boasts of more than 800 lawyers and $15 billion recovered for clients.
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The Property Case
Last year in Florida, the Moises Gross law firm in Coral Gables ranked sixth among law firms in Florida filing suits against property insurance companies. It was high-volume, low-damages work — tens of thousands of dollars per claim, generally.
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Alligator spottings ramp up as mating season gets underway
Alligator spottings ramp up as mating season gets underway

Florida wildlife officials say residents and visitors should expect to see gators at an increasing rate as mating season ramps up.

 

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