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Archive for the ‘Family’ Category

Bienvenidos a Woodburn

The increase in Latino populations throughout many U.S. communities in the past two decades may be old news. But in states like Oregon, the change is very recent and very dramatic. Producer Dmae Roberts brings us a portrait of a town transformed in the Beaver state. Woodburn is now 60% Latino, the highest proportion in the state.

Image of the Quinteros at their Woodburn “taquería,” courtesy of Dmae Roberts.

DmaeDmae Roberts is a two-time Peabody award-winning radio artist and writer based in Portland, Oregon who has written and produced more than 500 audio art pieces and documentaries for NPR and PRI. She is a USA Rockefeller Fellow and received the Dr. Suzanne Award for Civil Rights and Social Justice from the Asian American Journalists Association for her Peabody-winning eight-hour Crossing East Asian American history series that ran on 230 stations. Her essay “Finding The Poetry” was published in John Biewen’s essay book Reality Radio (UNC Press).


Dominican-American author Raquel Cepeda went on a search to find out about her heritage and identity. How? Through ancestral DNA testing. María Hinojosa speaks with Cepeda about her memoir, “Bird of Paradise: How I Became Latina.”

Raquel.photoRaquel Cepeda is an award-winning journalist, cultural activist and documentary filmmaker. A former magazine editor, her byline has appeared in The Village Voice,, and the Associated Press. She directed and produced “Bling: A Planet Rock,” about American hip-hop culture’s obsession with diamonds.


In Chicago, officials plan to shutter 54 schools they say are under-utilized. The closings are expected to save the city millions of dollars, but many are angry and upset. Students from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University examine the impact at two schools in a heavily Latino neighborhood on the west side. Paige Sutherland, Tanya Basu, Ananth Baliga and Lisa Carter report.

Image courtesy of Flickr/chicagopublicradio.

TanyaTanya Basu is a graduate student at the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University, where she focuses on economic reporting.


Lisa CarterLisa Carter is a journalism graduate student at Northwestern University. She is a native Texan who has written for publications in Chicago, Las Vegas, New York City, Austin and San Antonio.



ananthAnanth Baliga is from Mumbai, India and he is currently studying public policy reporting at the Medill School of Journalism. He began to study software engineering, but switched careers to follow his interest in political and public policy reporting. He previously worked in New Delhi Television, a national news channel in New Delhi, India, as an intern reporter.


Sutherland_biopicPaige Sutherland is a graduate student at the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University, where she focuses on urban reporting. She is originally from Boston, MA and received her bachelor’s degree from the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, MA.


The decision to be a mother is just as important as the choice not to become one. This Mother’s Day, Latino USA Editor Leda Hartman brings us a commentary about deciding to become –or not become– a mom.

Click here to download this week’s show. Image courtesy of MamasDay.Org

Leda.1Leda Hartman is a print and broadcast writer, reporter and editor. She is a longtime contributor to nationally broadcast public radio programs. Her work has aired on Morning Edition, All Things Considered, Marketplace, Latino USA, Living on Earth, Studio 360, and The World and Voice of America.


Thousands of farmworker families in California’s eastern Coachella Valley live in mobile home parks. They’re cheap and convenient to the farms but many of them are in terrible conditions. One of them –Duroville– is closing by court order and most of its residents are moving into a new park built with county money allocated before major budget cuts. In the new budget reality, some advocates say don’t close the bad parks –let them stay open and renovate slowly. Lisa Morehouse reports.

Click here to download this week’s show. Image courtesy of Lisa Morehouse. 

Lisa-Morehouse-150x150Lisa Morehouse is an award-winning independent public radio and print journalist, who’s filed for KQED’s The California Report, NPR’s Latino USA and All Things Considered, Edutopia magazine and McSweeney’s. Her reporting has taken her from Samoan traveling circuses to Mississippi Delta classrooms to the homes of Lao refugees in rural Iowa.  She’s currently working on After The Gold Rush: The Future of Rural California, an audio documentary website and series. A former public school teacher, Morehouse also works with at-risk youth to produce radio diaries.


Professor Angela Garcia has personal experience with addiction. She talks to Latino USA host Maria Hinojosa about her thoughts on La Cultura Cura, her book The Pastoral Clinic: Addiction and Dispossession Along the Rio Grande, and her thoughts on the relationship between poverty and drug addiction.

Click here to download this week’s show. Image courtesy of Amazon.

 Angela Garcia is a Professor at Stanford University. A central theme of her work is the disproportionate burden of addiction, depression and incarceration among poor families and communities. Garcia’s book, The Pastoral Clinic: Addiction and Dispossession Along The Rio Grande (Universityof California Press, 2010) received the 2012 Victor Turner Prize and a 2010 Pen Center USA Award. The Pastoral Clinic explores the relationship between intergenerational heroin use, poverty and colonial history in northern New Mexico.


New brotherly duo Raul y Mexia debuted their first album, Arriba y Lejos. But the siblings are no strangers to the music scene. We speak to them about their new album and about growing up as the sons of Norteño giants Los Tigres del Norte.

Click here to download this week’s show.

Raul Hernandez and Hernan Hernandez Jr (Raul y Mexia) are musicians and the sons of Hernan Hernandez of Los Tigres del Norte. They first burst into the music scene with a video they made for Todos Somos Arizona in which they spoke out against Arizona’s SB 1070. Their first album, Arriba y Lejos just debuted on Nacional Records. Photo courtesy of Vivelo Hoy. More info here.


Maria Hinojosa talks to Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor who has written a memoir called “My Beloved World.” The book tells the story of Sotomayor’s childhood in the South Bronx and her years before the court.

Click here to download this week’s show.

Judge Sonia Sotomayor has lived the American dream. Born to a Puerto Rican family, she grew up in a public housing project in the South Bronx. Her judicial service began in October 1992 with her appointment to the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York by President George H.W. Bush. President Clinton appointed Judge Sotomayor to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in 1998. She was the first Latina to serve on that court, and participated in over 3000 panel decisions, authoring roughly 400 published opinions.

Over a distinguished career that spans three decades, Judge Sotomayor has worked at almost every level of our judicial system, eventually becoming the first Hispanic, and only the third woman, to ever be appointed to the United States Supreme Court.


A campaign is underway in Oregon to put a marriage equality bill up for consideration in the coming year. And activists are reaching out to Latino families early to make sure it succeeds. Jacob Lewin reports.

Click here to download this week’s show. [Image courtesy of Flickr.]

Jacob Lewin is a veteran Portland-based radio journalist whose work has been featured on Morning Edition, Marketplace, the Northwest News Network, Oregon Public Radio and KLCC-FM/Eugene.

He was also News Director at KINK-FM/Portland. His awards include an Edward R. Murrow for sound and a Scripps-Howard for radio journalism. Learning Spanish opened the door to Latino film, music, literature and food for him. Le encantan.


The Christmas story of Mary and Joseph seeking refuge in a strange land has a special significance for Mexican immigrants in the United States. Latino USA host Maria Hinojosa visits Spanish Harlem for Las Posadas, the reenactment of the Nativity story among friends and neighbors.

Click here to download this week’s show.


Victor Landa, editor of News Taco, fills us in on the deferred action program that give residence and work permits to some undocumented young people, and we check in on a new one-million-dollar scholarship for UC Berkeley students. Plus Puerto Rican prisoners tweet behind bars.

Click here to download this week’s show.

Victor Landa is the founder and editor of NewsTaco, a website that provides news, analysis and critique from a Latino perspective. He worked as a writer and editor for 30 years, mostly with Telemundo and Univisión. Landa also contributed to the San Antonio Express-News, and he is an adviser on media strategy, message crafting, storytelling and public speaking.



When Austin resident Trina Hernandez found out her family had Jewish roots, it allowed her to ditch the commercial aspects of Christmas she had long disliked and connect to a tradition she found more meaningful for her and her son.

Click here to download this week’s show.

Trina Hernandez is a busy madre y esposa and legal assistant by day and a blogger, contributor for Latinometro, and co-director for Austin’s LATISM chapter by night. She is also a proud resident of Austin, TX, sharing everything she experiences within the city. You can always find her on twitter (@atxtrina) or on her couch watching too much TV. And you can definitely always find her at home on Sabbath.


We feature excerpts from one of two videos that Caesar Sanchez from Austin, Texas, sent us about his family members’ sense of their identity. The videos were sent in response to our call for how our listeners see their identities as part of our series SOMOS/We Are.

Click here to download this week’s show.

Somos por Roxanne Coffman from Ceasar Sanchez on Vimeo.

Somos por Ricardo Siller from Ceasar Sanchez on Vimeo.


Comic book superheroes may rule movie screens recently, but two Chicanos from Southern California have used comics to tell amazing stories about ordinary people for the past 30 years. We meet Jaime and Gilbert Hernandez, godfathers of the alternative comics movement and creators of Love and Rockets. Latino USA’s senior producer Carolina Gonzalez reports.

Click here to download this week’s show. Love and Rockets, Copyright 2012, Gilbert and Jaime Hernandez. Photo courtesy of Fantagraphics.

Diaz On Hernandez/Hernandez on Diaz

Dominican-American author Junot Díaz’s work often references Love & Rockets. And Jaime Hernandez has illustrated four Díaz stories published in The New Yorker magazine. So we decided to ask Díaz about the influence Los Bros. have had on his storytelling, and asked Jaime about translating Diaz’s obsessions into images. Check out what they said here:

But wait! There’s more…check out this exclusive cover art slide show below:

Carolina Gonzalez is an award-winning journalist and scholar with over two decades of experience in print and radio. She served as an editorial writer at the New York Daily News, and has covered education, immigration, politics, music and Latino culture in various alternative and mainstream media outlets, such as WNYC radio, AARP Segunda Juventud, SF Weekly and the Progressive Media Project. The guidebook she co-authored with Seth Kugel, Nueva York: the Complete Guide to Latino Life in the Five Boroughs, was published in 2006 by St. Martin’s Press. She was raised in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, and Queens, New York and lives in Brooklyn, New York.

Treasure Hunt

Geocaching, a sort of 21st Century scavenger hunt where players try to locate hidden containers using a smartphone or GPS, may seem like the ultimate in hipster playtime. But for our host Maria Hinojosa, it’s an exercise that gives her quality time with her daughter, lets her join in adventures with like-minded strangers and connects her to familiar landscapes in new ways.

RadioNature is a year-long series that looks at how people of color connect with nature. Funding comes from the REI Foundation.

Click here to download this week’s show. Image courtesy of  Flickr (Creative Commons)



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