Michele Gillen is chief investigative reporter at WFOR-TV, Miami, Florida. Gillen, who has served as an anchor and investigative reporter on both network and local television news, is the recipient of 23 National Academy of Television Arts and Science (NATAS) Emmy awards, the Columbia DuPont Silver Baton, the Edward R. Murrow Award for Investigative Reporting, three Green Eyeshade Awards, and has been honored twice by the Foundation of American Women in Radio and Television.
Gillen came to WFOR from KCBS-TV, the CBS station in Los Angeles, where she worked as investigative reporter since June, 1995. Prior to joining KCBS, Gillen produced and reported a number of investigative series for the nationally-syndicated news magazine The Crusaders. From 1993 to 1994, Gillen worked at WTVJ (NBC) Miami, as anchor of the 6 and 11 PM newscasts and investigative reporter. Before joining WTVJ, she served as investigative correspondent for NBC News from 1988 to 1993. During her last two years at NBC News, Gillen was a featured investigative correspondent on the news magazine broadcasts Exposé and Dateline NBC. She worked from 1980 to 1988 at WPLG (ABC), Miami, as anchor and investigative reporter. Gillen began her broadcast journalism career as morning anchor and reporter for WLBZ-TV (NBC) in Bangor, Maine. Later, she moved to WCSH-TV (NBC), Portland, Maine where she served as the evening news co-anchor.
Gillen has a long history of initiating investigative reports which result in significant legislative and/or law-enforcement policy changes. While at KCBS, she reported and produced a special investigative series titled “Mammography- Too Young to Die”. The series, which was selected best of show for all investigative reporting (local and network) by the Foundation of American Women in Radio and Television, exposed a flawed government policy on mammography and was credited by members of U.S. Congress.
Michele produced a pioneering five-part special report for “The Crusaders,” which focused on domestic violence, particularly in South Florida. Her reporting resulted in a county-wide task force which provided cameras to police agencies to use in documenting domestic violence reports. At WTVJ, she won two Emmy Awards for an investigative series on elderly abuse at state-licensed South Florida nursing homes. The series helped initiate important legislative and law-enforcement changes to fight elderly abuse. While working for “NBC Nightly News with Tom Brokaw,” she conducted a four-month investigation of substandard mammography equipment which resulted in the creation and passage of the first federal law setting national standards for mammography.
Gillen graduated valedictorian from Emerson College in Boston, Massachusetts, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in speech and mass communications. A native of Jackson Heights, Queens, New York, she served on the Board of Overseers at Emerson College.
More than 5 years ago, David Packouz, and his former arms trading partner made national headlines. The story of how the two young men from Miami Beach managed to bid and win a 300 million-dollar government arms contract led to congressional hearings and convictions. Packouz has remained mostly silent on this chapter of his life, but now, for the first time on television, he shares his story with Michele Gillen
As part of our celebration of Black History Month we profile Thelma Gibson. Born in the 1920s, this Miami native not only witnessed life here leading up to the civil rights movement, she fought tooth and nail for civil rights. Ms. Gibson was also one of the founders of the Jewish Home for the Aged, and one of the women who started the Women’s Chamber of Commerce of Dade County, South Florida’s first women’s chamber.
Dinner and a show doesn’t necessarily involve a restaurant and a theater anymore. Miami-Dade College Live Arts is bringing immersive theater to South Florida. The National Theater of Scotland will perform an inventive play which is not performed on stage, but in a bar, in which theatergoers find themselves immersed in the action. We focus on this unconventional play and the MDC Live Arts program’s efforts to bring cutting-edge cultural events to our area.
Every 90 minutes someone is diagnosed with A-L-S, and every 90 minutes, someone loses their battle to this debilitating disease. There is no cure for A-L-S, more commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, The A-L-S Association is the only nonprofit fighting Lou Gehrig’s Disease on every front. The annual walk to defeat ALS is coming back to South Florida on March first. We focus on how you can get involved in the walk and why you should get involved in this fight against ALS.
Refugees resettling here face innumerable challenges. LGBT refugees face those challenges as well as unique obstacles, concerns and vulnerabilities. Church World Service is a global non-profit whose immigration and refugee program is dedicated to assisting South Florida refugees. CWS recently received grant funding from the Heartland Alliance Rainbow Initiative to provide services to LGBT clients. We focus on this often forgotten group of people, and the importance of making available the help they need.
It was just four hours after a bond hearing for inmate Edwardo Calderin, 46, that he reportedly hanged himself.
Michele shares the inspiring and heartbreaking story that takes you from the sandy beaches of Florida to the battlefield of Iraq. It is an intimate portrait of a young widow determined that the love story of her hero- will forever be timeless.
The sudden death of actor Philip Seymour Hoffman has put the spotlight back on what some say is a growing heroin epidemic in this country. Michele focuses on that with a local substance abuse counselor.
When W. George Allen graduated from the College of Law at the University of Florida in 1962, he was the first African American to do so. A year later, Mr. Allen is credited with filing the lawsuit that integrated Broward County and Hendry County public schools. He went on to practice law in Broward for just shy of a half century. As part of Black History month. Mr. Allen is set to speak at the Fort Lauderdale Historical Society. He shares with us his knowledge on the evolution and progress of the fight for civil rights.
More than 5 years ago, David Packouz and his former arms trading business partner became national news. The story of how the Miami Beach duo managed to bid and win a $300 million government arms contract led to Congressional hearings and convictions.