Helen Freund is the food and dining critic at the Tampa Bay Times, where she writes about restaurant culture, dining trends and food news in the Tampa Bay area. Before moving to Florida in 2019 to join the Times, she was the restaurant critic and dining editor at Gambit Weekly, an alternative newspaper in New Orleans, and a criminal justice reporter at The Times-Picayune. Originally from the Pacific Northwest, she attended culinary school at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris and graduated from the University of Washington. Her award-winning work has been recognized by several organizations, including the Society for Features Journalism, the Association of Alternative Newsmedia, and the Association of Food Journalists, among others. Her 2023 National Fellowship project will report on an important part of the national addiction and substance abuse crisis that has largely been left untold.