On September 6th, 2013, NPR’s Latino USA with Maria Hinojosa, the foremost Latino voice in public media and longest running Latino-focused program on radio, will expand to an hour. Building on its 20 year tradition, the new Latino USA will be fast-paced, lively and smart with varied points of view andwriting designed for the weekend NPR listener. The program will continue to chronicle how Latinos are living in, shaping and changing America.
The time is right for Latino USA to expand. By 2017, 121 million people in the US will identify as Latino, Asian American or African American. Latinos will represent over half of that population. Since 1992, The Futuro Media Group’s Latino USA, anchored and executive produced by award-winning journalist Maria Hinojosa, has provided a depth of experience, on-the-ground connections and knowledge of current and emerging issues impacting Latinos and other people of color. Latino USA reports current news and public policy as well as stories about diversity and culture. The broadcast provides much needed civic dialogue about how people are adjusting to a more diverse America.
Latino USA with Maria Hinojosa also celebrates its 20th anniversary in 2013, with storytelling that is timely and relevant to the world today. A 1993 article in the Austin American-Statesman compared Latino USA to other Latino-focused programs, stating: “unlike the rest, its creators vow to be around into the 21st century…” And they were right, Latino USA isn’t just around. It is thriving.
Of the expansion, Maria Hinojosa said,
An engaging cast of new voices and contributors will join Hinojosa, among them Al Madrigal, standup comedian, actor and correspondent on The Daily Show; Pilar Marrero, political reporter and veteran immigration reporter for La Opiníon; Julia Preston, immigration reporter for the New York Times; Marta Moreno Vega, writer, scholar, cultural activist and “Wise Latina;” and Jimmy Santiago Baca, poet, novelist and essayist.
New recurring segments will broaden the scope and story mix of Latino USA. In “Dimelo,” new advice columnist for Latina magazine Pauline Campos will offer advice on listeners’ “Latino Problems.” At a time when one out of four kindergarteners are Latino, “Class of 2030” will take a look at how these students will impact the education system. As deportations reach record highs, “Dearly Deported” will chronicle the personal stories of thousands of Latinos separated from their families because of US immigration laws. The new series “Somos/We Are” will present an intimate insider’s conversation about Latino identity, how Latinos self-identify, what they look like, and how others see them.
Eric Nuzum, Vice President of Programming at NPR, said of the expansion, “As a foremost national source of public media, it is NPR’s responsibility to sound like the many, increasingly diverse voices that make up our nation. We’re really looking forward to this move creating space for bold new content.”
Executive producer and Latino USA host Maria Hinojosa is an award-winning reporter, news anchor and author with more than 25 years of experience as an investigative journalist. Among Hinojosa’s accolades are four Emmys, the 2012 John Chancellor Award for Excellence in Journalism, Robert F. Kennedy Award for Reporting on the Disadvantaged, and Chicago’s Studs Terkel Community Media Award. Hinojosa is currently the Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz Chair of the Latin American and Latino Studies program at De Paul University in Chicago.
Latino USA is produced by The Futuro Media Group, an independent non-profit media organization dedicated to producing multimedia journalism that explores andgives critical voice to the diversity of the American experience. Founded by Maria Hinojosa in 2010, Futuro Media is committed to sharing stories often overlooked by mainstream media.
Latino USA is distributed by NPR, and the first episode of the hour-long show will be available September 6th. To listen, check your local listings or visit latinousa.org. Listeners from across the country can join the conversation by hosting their own virtual listening parties and live-tweeting their reactions to hashtag #LUSAhour. For details on how to host your own Latino USA listening party, including digital tools, recipes, and prizes, visit latinousa.org/lusahour.