Beat/Position: Social Services Reporter and Food Critic
Pera started with The Ledger in July 1990 as a general assignment reporter, based in Winter Haven, where he served in a variety of capacities, primarily covering city beats throughout East Polk County.
In 1997 Pera moved to The Ledger’s Lakeland headquarters to cover issues related to Polk’s spectrum of social services.
For the past eight years or so, Pera has had the added responsibility of coordinating The Ledger’s annual Newspaper with a Heart program, which raises funds to assist people in need with rent, utilities and other resources.
Pera also serves as The Ledger’s restaurant critic, and he writes a weekly beer column. Before coming to The Ledger, he worked as copywriter for several advertising and marketing firms. Prior to that he worked for eight years in the radio industry as on-air talent, copywriter and production manager.
Published July 23, 2014
Most days, Shayann Brookins Jones is at work before sunrise, stirring things up in her restaurant kitchen to feed Bartow a king-size breakfast of buttermilk biscuits, sausage gravy, blueberry flapjacks and fried pork chops. Jones opened her downtown...
Published July 22, 2014
Minnesota's Summit Brewing Company has been making its flagship Extra Pale Ale since 1986. It was noteworthy then, and now, having garnered a silver medal in this year's World Beer Cup.
Published July 21, 2014
SUMMIT BREWING COMPANYExtra Pale AleMinnesota's Summit Brewing Company has been making its flagship Extra Pale Ale since 1986. It was noteworthy then, and now, having garnered a silver medal in this year's World Beer Cup.
Published July 19, 2014
His drug addiction and unstable lifestyle behind him, Ken Mathis found therapy and redemption in hard work and family. But the tables quickly turned when his eyes started to fail as a result of untreated glaucoma.
Published July 19, 2014
Throughout his career, chef Thomas Pepka has demonstrated he can stand the heat. But does he have the right stuff to win one of the top awards of the American Culinary Federation?
Published July 14, 2014
The new administrator of the Citrus Center Boys & Girls Clubs is a familiar face to hundreds of children who depend on the Winter Haven-based nonprofit for after-school and summer activities.
Published July 10, 2014
Gregory Fancelli, a grandson of the late George Jenkins, founder of Publix Super Markets Inc., is at odds with Lakeland developer Tom Mims over the future of a Lake Hollingsworth home scheduled for demolition.
Published July 9, 2014
The menu's simple, mostly sandwiches and coffee, at this new, corner deli in Downtown Lakeland, sister to the first Divicious that appeared a little more than three years ago at Lakeland South Shopping Center.
Published July 2, 2014
The Chalet Suzanne, the historic-but-quirky restaurant and inn that catered to the rich and famous with plates of rich, sherry-spiked lobster Newberg and thick lamb chops served by women in Swiss costume, is closing its doors after 83 years.