Dateline Florida

Published May 11, 2007

Magazine's top 10 list recognizes a local face

Glamour magazine has named Eckerd College senior and nationwide adoption advocate Ashley Rhodes-Courter as one of America's top 10 college women. Now 21, she lived in 14 foster homes before she was adopted at age 12 and has since appeared on the Montel Williams Show and touted adoption in numerous speeches. She was named youth advocate of the year by the North American Council on Adoption, grand prize winner in a New York Times Magazine essay competition and was selected to USA Today's college academic team. She carries a 3.84 average, majoring in communications and theater and minoring in psychology and political science.

Coming to the silver screen: the story of Sami Al-Arian

Tickets are now on sale for the Tampa premiere of USA vs. Al-Arian, the Norwegian documentary of the Sami Al-Arian trial. More than 600 have been sold and 800 remain, the film's backers said Thursday. The film depicts Al-Arian's family during the six-month trial. The former University of South Florida professor was acquitted of eight counts of links to terrorism last year, while a jury deadlocked on nine others. He pleaded guilty to one count of providing nonviolent aid to associates of Palestinian Islamic Jihad and remains in prison. The film will show at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Tampa Theatre, followed by a panel discussion that includes Al-Arian's attorney and a jury member.

The Sunshine City is now also a Green City

St. Petersburg became the first city in Florida Thursday to get a Green City designation from the Florida Green Building Coalition. The award recognizes the city's efforts to reduce energy emissions, as well as to conserve water. In recent years, the city switched its fleet to biodiesel fuel and installed energy-saving lights in traffic systems. Officials said the city uses less water today than it did 25 years ago.