Friday, February 3, 2023

David Ovalle joins The Post’s Health and Science team to cover opioids

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Announcement from National Editor Matea Gold, Deputy National Editor Philip Rucker and Health and Science Editor Stephen Smith:

We’re pleased to announce that David Ovalle, who has had a distinguished two-decade chronicle of South Florida’s characters and crimes, is joining The Post’s Health and Science team to cover opioids and other aspects of the urgent crisis of substance abuse in America.

In this new position, David will cover the plight of people with substance abuse disorders and consider the forces that have fueled their addiction. A key part of that pace will be identifying emerging trends in opioid and other substance abuse, including recognizing deadly new drugs entering the market and tracking how billions of dollars in legal settlement money are spent by governments. David will also collaborate on coverage of the Food and Drug Administration, including the agency’s ongoing efforts to regulate tobacco and e-cigarettes.

David, who is known for his resourcefulness, strong sourcing and compelling storytelling, has chronicled the consequences of addiction as a crime and justice reporter for the Miami Herald. He explored plight of heroin addicts in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria, Miami overdose epicenter, revival crystal meth in South Florida and flow of synthetic drugs from China to Miami. At the height of the coronavirus pandemic, David wrote about people Fights to stay clear during jams.

During his 20 years at the Herald, David reported on crime, the courts and natural disasters — just about everything Florida can throw at a reporter. He covered two dozen hurricanes or tropical storms, leaving Hurricane Katrina in 2005 first in Miami, then in New Orleans. He traveled to Haiti to cover the aftermath of the devastating earthquake in 2010. David was also part of the Herald team that won the 2022 Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News for coverage of the Surfside apartment collapse that killed 98 people.

A native of San Diego, David was raised by a single mother from Guatemala. He is a proud new parent with his partner, Mary, an art teacher and former Miami Radio Disney teen personality. Outside of work, David is an avid runner, swimmer and reader, devouring military history books and Swedish murder mysteries. He graduated from the University of Southern California with a degree in print journalism and Spanish.

Please join us in welcoming David. His first day in the Washington newsroom is February 6.

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