BARBARA NEVINS TAYLOR

That's me in the small picture with my students, but the article is nice and says a lot about what we do.

Ground Zero September 11, 2012

You can contact me at barbaranevinstaylor@​gmail.com
And visit ConsumerMojo.


2012-EMMY winner for Journalist Enterprise.

Online and in stores now



As you move through the pages of this website
you'll find that I've got a number of serious
passions.

I'm a bicycle rider, sailor, hiker, yoga enthusiast,
serious home-cook, novel reader, lover of
Broadway theater, and good jazz. In addition I'm working on a research project about why people do good deeds.

If you've got something that you'd like to talk with me about, please use my blog page or email me.



RECENT AWARDS
2011
New York Newswomen's Front Page Award for TV Reporting for the series on Government Waste
New York Press Cub Political Reporting Award
for the series on government waste.
New
New York Acadmeny of Television Radio Arts and Sciences
4 Emmy nominations
2010
The New York Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences chose our series of reporters about the Long Island Ponzi schemer Nicholas Cosmo for an EMMY in the continuing coverage category.

I also won an EMMY with the team for coverage of "The Miracle on the Hudson."

The New York Press Club also honored me this year for the Long Island Ponzi schemer stories, and I won a Folio award from the Long Island Coalition for Fair Media for the series.

2009 was a good year.

2 Emmy Awards

The New York Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences awarded us the Investigative Reporting Emmy for our story about Medicaid Fraud.

We also won an Emmy for Crime Reporting for our investigation of a car accident that took the life of a Brooklyn child who was crossing the street with his dad. We found that a driver had a history of serious violations and yet retained his license.


The New York Press Club also honored our Medicaid Fraud report with its award for Consumer Reporting. The Newswomen's Club of New York gave us its Feature Award for a story about a woman who lost nearly everything when she tumbled down cracked subway steps, broke major bones in her body, and woke up in Bellevue Medical Center unable to move. Our report helped her save her possessions and begin to get her life back.

The New Jersey Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists honored us with awards for our investigation into a probation officer who demanded, a man on probation she supervises perform work in her home for almost nothing.

We were also honored for our story about communities fighting against giant power lines that are set to run through their backyards.

REPORTS THAT GET ACTION
Our series on government waste got people talking and moving.
The reports get credit for prodding New York State to close an empty juvenile detention center where staffers continued to paychecks and prisons where employees almost out-numbered inmates.

A number of people whom we’ve exposed have been sent to prison as a result of our reports,or are under investigation.

PONZI SCHEME
Ponzi Schemer Nicholas Cosmo was finally sentenced to 25-years in prison in October 2011.

MEDICAID FRAUD
It took awhile, but our reports about a family who allegedly milked the Medicaid system with a group of dental clinics led to arrests in 2010. But the case is still playing out.


CREDIT REPAIR LAWSUIT

In October of 2008 the New Jersey attorney general filed a lawsuit against a credit repair company we investigated in 2007. The attorney general charged the company with deceptive practices something that we pointed out in our report.

LANDLORD GETS JAIL TIME

In April 2008 landlord Hamid Khan was jailed for 8 days after our 2007 report exposed the hellish conditions in one of his Bronx buildings.


HOME IMPROVEMENT NIGHTMARE

In December of 2007 Wayne Drinkwine was sentenced to pay more than $170,000 in restitution to homeowners he cheated. Our 2006 report exposed how he embezzled money from homeowners and his bosses.


GREEN CARD SCAM—

In 2007 the United States Attorney in the Southern District of New York charged Maria Elena Maximo with scamming immigrants out of nearly $1 Million by promising to help them get Green Cards. The complaint cited our 2006 report, and our undercover investigation.

Maria Elena Maximo ran a community organization called Jamalali Uagucha. She was supposed to be an advocate for immigrants and neighborhood residents. Instead we found that she was running a massive green card scam where she charged immigrants who were not qualified $1500 a piece to process applications for Green Cards and work permits.

Because there is such a backlog of applications in New York, the immigration service is required to give anyone who applies for a Green Card a work permit. When the immigration service gets around to processing the Green Card application and it’s denied, the work permit is pulled and the person is deported.

Maximo was able to fool people who were not eligible into paying her the money because others got the work permits, and the word in the community was that it appeared legitimate. We did an undercover report where an immigrant who wasn’t qualified went into the office to talk to Maximo. She told her she could qualify, and when we confronted Maximo she sputtered, and stuttered and told me I was violating her rights by asking her questions.

Maximo is accused of defrauding the U.S. government and the immigrants whose money she took, and whose status in this country she jeopardized.

LANDLORD GETS JAIL TIME–
In 2007 a bad landlord sent to jail for 12 days because of the inhumane conditions in his buildings. In two reports we exposed Olefumi Falade, a Brooklyn landlord, whose tenants lived with collapsed ceilings, no heat, no hot water, toilets that didn’t work, giant holes in the floors, leaky roofs and other persistent problems that would make anyone cry. We were there when Falade turned himself in at Brooklyn Housing court. We followed him as he was handcuffed and taken to the city jail.


TAX PREPARER SCAM

The U.S. Attorney in Newark and the IRS indicted and arrested an East Orange New Jersey tax preparer we exposed 4 years ago. The indictment was based on cases from 2002 when we did our investigation and found that the a staffer in the tax preparer’s office was filling out income tax returns encouraging people to falsely claim dependents so they could get bigger refunds, and the company a larger fee.

BAD CONTRACTOR GETS JAIL TIME

A Suffolk County, Long Island judge sentenced a serially bad contractor to 6 months in jail. We investigated Chris Colona last summer and found that he took large amounts of money from homeowners, some paid him in excess of $30,000, started work and never finished it leaving the homeowners with nightmare situations. In one case he ripped out a family’s bathroom, left the new bathtub in the master bedroom, and never returned. In other cases, he tore up people’s yards promising to lay stone, or tile and left the homeowners with shoddy, unfinished work. We brought the Suffolk County Commissioner of Consumer Affairs to see what havoc Colona wrought, and as a result charges were brought against him.

DR. JOSE ARELY LOPEZ GOES TO PRISON—

Jose Arley Lopez who lost his medical licenses in two states and then continued to practice medicine began serving 2-6 years in a New York State Prison.

Dr. Jose Lopez pleaded guilty to practicing medicine without a license, and this was a direct result of our reporting.

Lopez was arrested after we revealed that he continued to perform cosmetic surgery although his medical licenses had been revoked. His medical licenses in New York and New Jersey were taken away after Wendy Nunez, a young mother died on his operating table during anesthesia for a tummy tuck in Lopez's New Jersey office.

Caught on camera, our undercover camera caught Lopez examining and consulting with a patient in his Fifth Avenue office and explaining how he was going to make her "more beautiful." We also inadvertently walked in on Lopez with our camera rolling as he was performing surgery. Shortly after that confrontation, he left the surgery and ran out the side door of the office building where we confronted him in the street. He denied that he was performing surgery. The New York Attorney General extradited Lopez from Florida where he fled after our report. But the A.G.'s office wasn't as quick to act after we exposed Dean Faiello pretending to be a doctor. Faiello billed himself as a laser specialist and our undercover report caught him claiming he was a doctor. While Faiello was arrested after our report, he was free on bail awaiting sentencing when he allegedly killed a woman during a laser procedure. Her body was found stuffed in a suitcase buried in cement in the garage of Faiello's family home in Newark, New Jersey. He's facing murder charges.

Featured Work

My work on the Lopez story was featured on the Maury Povich show in January. My work exposing Faiello was featured in Vanity Fair and on 48 Hours. An upcoming segment of Montel Williams will feature my reporting on stolen identity.

Warning About Mercury in Skin Care Products

I feel great when public officials take action because of something that I’ve uncovered in an investigation. It is even better when their action helps other people, and that’s what happened recently in New York.

If you shop in a beauty supply store in an ethnic neighborhood, you’re likely to find soaps, and skin-lightening creams laced with mercury. These products are extremely dangerous because mercury can damage the central nervous system causing paralysis, damage the kidneys, cause severe depression, and harm an unborn child. We reported the terrible dangerous of mercury soaps and lotions in the chapter called Dangerous Products in Beautiful Skin of Color. As an investigative reporter, I’ve been reporting about this problem for four years on UPN9 News.

After we brought the issue to the attention of the New York City Health Department, officials promised to launch their own investigation. As result, the Health Department issued a warning to the public about the extreme dangers of skincare products containing mercury. Many news outlets picked up the story and we hope that many, many people get the message.

You can find the details, and the reasons why you shouldn’t use these products in Beautiful Skin of Color the book I wrote with the two smart, and talented dermatologists, Dr. Jeanine Downie, and Dr. Fran Cook-Bolden




Beautiful Skin of Color now available in paperback

JOIN THE JOURNEY

Barbara Nevins Taylor
A NEW MISSION

I’m in the middle of a new adventure. A small team and I launched ConsumerMojo.com It’s a website filled with videos and original content about money matters. We report honestly about everything from credit to student loans, to 55 Plus issues, mortgages and more. Visit the site, watch the videos, read the posts and let us know what you think.
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REMEMBER 9/11/2001

September 11th and we always remember. Every detail stays with us.

I live in Greenwich Village and on September 11th 2001 at about 8:45, I stood in front of a mirror and applied eyeshadow. It was election day, and I was getting ready to go to vote before I went to work.

Suddenly, I felt our four story house shake. The NPR voice on the radio disappeared and I heard screams from the street.

The front door flew open and my husband Nick yelled, “A plane just slammed into the World Trade Center."

What? Impossible, I thought. The radio voice was there again. “A plane crashed into Tower One at the World Trade Center.” “

I had only one thought. I have to go.

I called my news desk, at WWOR-TV and FOX5 NY. The assignment editor urged, “Go. Go now.” I pulled on a black dress, put on sneakers and stuffed my makeup, my notebook, and a bunch of other stuff into a backpack and asked Nick to come to help me.

We saw the towers from the corner of Bleecker Street and 7th Avenue South.

A woman ran toward her building screaming, “I saw it. I saw it.” Tears streaked her face. Neighbors clustered in small groups. They stared in horror.

Black smoke and flames sprouted from the north tower. A neighbor said, “I saw the plane. It flew so low over Sixth Avenue that I thought it would crash here. ”

Nick and I walked south against a tide of thousands. They headed north on Varick Street and who could blame them? The north tower was burning and everything seemed uncertain and unknowable.

My phone linked me to the newsroom and I learned that a plane crashed in Pennsylvania and a third plane flew into the pentagon.

“How could this happen?” Nick and I repeatedly asked each other. “Where were the warning systems? Where was the CIA? Where were the government watchdogs?”

We lost the cell phone connection near Canal Street. We reached the burning towers and stared dumbly, helpless and horrified. We wanted to do something, but what?

Four plain clothes N.Y.P.D. detectives appeared out of nowhere. A strange slow roar seemed to leap from the earth itself. “She’s coming down. Run," one of the detectives shouted above the deep growl.

The sky darkened and grey and white matter floated through the air. The south tower crumbled.

It seemed like a slow motion nightmare. We ran north with the crowd. Two blocks up, we turned back. Tiny white figures in the dark slots of the upper floors of the north tower tumbled out and floated in the air moving down and down and down.

“No. Don’t,” I heard my voice scream when I saw another figure in a window. A man next to me said, “They have no choice. It's burning behind them."

Unimaginable. How could you choose between a burning death and a jumping death?

I had to find a working phone. The bewildered manager of a shuttered McDonald's, on Chambers Street, let me in. They had a fax phone that worked and he let me use it.

The FOX 5 live truck was headed our way. Nick and I rushed to meet it. Then, One World Trade groaned and collapsed. The sky darkened even more violently and thick gray dust and smoke covered lower Manhattan.

The dark cloud trailed us as we ran the few blocks to find the TV truck.

For the next week, I reported live. I held the microphone for people with stories to tell. Some searched for loved ones, others grieved. Many came to dig to try to rescue anyone who was left. Some worked in the morgue and talked to try to clear their heads.

A doctor said he jumped on his motorcycle outside of the Archive building on Christopher and headed toward the burning buildings. He told us that he began to help people injured by falling debris. An emergency technician worked beside him and helped. But then, the north tower began to collapse. The man helping yelled, "Take cover Doc." The doctor slid under a fire truck as the tower came down and when the debris settled he couldn't find the emergency technician.

He wanted to find this man, and used our microphone to call out to him. "You called me Doc. He said. If you're still alive, please let me know."

Parents from Long Island, held a photo of their son in front of the camera and asked if anyone had seen him.

Rescue workers, still covered in bits of debris, talked about the struggle to get people out alive and some told about the thrill of actually finding a person they could help.

A preacher who volunteered in the morgue said simply, "I have never seen anything like this in my life. I never thought that I would see anything like this." And then his voice cracked and he wept.

There are so many of these stories and they are indelible.






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A GOOD MAFIA TALE

MY HUSBAND NICK'S BOOK SINS OF THE FATHER WAS JUST REPUBLISHED. IT'S A GOOD READ ABOUT A FAMILY RUNNING FROM THE MOB AND JOHN GOTTI

Nick is timely. With so many out of work, Americans need jobs. "American-Made: The Enduring Legacy of the W.P.A.: When FDR Put the Nation to Work," tells the story of the federal government's response to the "Great Depression" when millions of Americans were out of work and people were starving. The government created jobs- all kinds. People worked as laborers building roads and schools, as artists, as librarians, as archeologists, as actors, as publicists. You name it. They did it. And they created projects we can still see today. Nick did a great job weaving together the stories and the politics. If you are a history buff, if you wonder why government doesn't do more to fix things now this is the book for you.






Take a tour of WPA projects with Nick Taylor


SAILING IN THE B.V.I.

I'm dreaming of green water and blue skies. Our annual trip to the British Virgin Island was done in by the emergency restoration on our house.
But I like to go back and read about how much fun it is to sail there.
I've posted my blog about it, and it remains on the site.

Bareboat Sailing

Nick and I took a ten day sailing trip alone aboard a 40 foot Beneteau in the British Virgin Islands. We began when the moon was almost full and we vowed to proceed with caution. We’ve learned from scary experience it’s best to be humble when you are in the water with boats. During this trip there was plenty to be concerned about. Small craft advisories were a regular feature of the daily weather report, and as the forecasters predicted, we experienced high seas, howling Christmas winds, at least one blinding rainstorm, a series of beautiful rainbows, and pastel sunsets. We were plagued with a weird toilet flushing system, a cranky dinghy motor that beached us on a night when Nick was dressed up in a white linen suit, and orange espadrilles. And of course we had our share of anchor and mooring escapades. Through it all we had a terrific time. We hope you enjoy our story, which is on my blog page. And if you are sailor looking for a place to go, we hope this offers useful insight.

BEAUTIFUL SKIN OF COLOR

I'm the author of "Beautiful Skin of Color," with two talent dermatologists: Dr. Jeanine Downie, and Dr. Fran Cook-Bolden. If you are Asian, African American, Caribbean American, Native American, Middle Eastern, Mediterranean from the Indian Sub-Continent, or from the Pacific, this book has important, useful information for you about your skin and hair.

You can find it online at Amazon, or Barnes & Noble. It's available in both paperback and hardcover, and we hope that you enjoy it.

Beautiful Skin of Color has easy to find answers to your every day skin problems

You can purchase Beautiful Skin of Color on-line or at your local bookstore.

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