Meet Steve Wright, storyteller and advocate

📸 Photo courtesy of Steve Wright

Howdy, Steve! Who are you? What do you do?

I am a writer, visual artist, keynote speaker, planner, educator, and advocate. I work for myself, creating content about Universal Design and a better built environment for people with disabilities. My clients include the National Association of REALTORS, the United Spinal Association, the American Planning Association, Global Disability Inclusion Inc., and many others. I also create workshops and speeches about how to make cities more inclusive for all.

What neighborhood(s) are you reppin’?

For 20+ years, I have lived in the Shenandoah section of Little Havana in a home built in 1922. I have restored it — with permits — and it inspires me to take photographs of Little Havana.

What brings you most alive about the 305?

Walking for entertainment and exercise. I lost 125 pounds eating healthier and walking from my home in Shenandoah to the Miami River and throughout Little Havana, documenting the Art Deco, Spanish Mission, Mediterranean, and other 1920s to 1940s classic apartment, commercial, spiritual, and single-family homes. My images are on display (and for sale) at the Art Deco Welcome Center in Miami Beach until mid-November.

What’s your favorite Miami memory?

Getting to create, from scratch, a revolutionary course on Universal Design taught to graduate and undergraduate architecture and urban design students at the University of Miami School of Architecture.

If you could eat only one meal from a local restaurant for the rest of your life, what would it be?

A BBQ steak sub, well done, on wheat, no cheese, black olives as the only condiment, and hot cherry peppers on the side from Super Subs, an institution on Bird Road in South Miami. (I eat less than half the sub bun and have no fries or chips to keep it healthy!)

Outside of the obvious stop above, share your other top three destinations for where you’d go on your perfect Miami day.

(1) Miami Beach at 5:00 a.m. to run on the sand till the sun rises. (2) Ball & Chain in the heart of Calle Ocho for great music, drink, and vibes any time — day or night. (3) Play on the grass at William Jennings Bryan Park, because I live on it and spent more than two years protecting the one acre of greenspace from being paved over.

What’s your favorite local social media account and why?

@BecauseMiami, because it’s snarky, sardonic and cynical.

If you could give any one piece of advice to locals, what would it be?

Love people who are different than you. Learn from them; drink in their culture.

How does Miami help you do what you do or influence your work?

I’m from Ohio. It’s sure nice to have warm, sunny winters. That gets me going when I’m having trouble writing or launching a big project.

If there was one thing you could change, address, etc. about Miami, what would it be?

All politicians would be in it for the little guy, not themselves. Elected officials would make decisions based on creating a legacy of inclusion.

What are you looking forward to in 2023?

World travel and more work being an evangelist for Universal Design and a barrier-free built environment.

That’s a wrap on this week’s Locals to Know. Know someone who ought to be featured or would like to be featured yourself? Reach out by sending an email to [email protected] with the subject line “TNT Locals to Know 2023.” If chosen, you might just see yourself or a friend in a future newsletter.