The 21st Show

Finding Black And Latino-focused news in Illinois

Covers of Reflejos, N'DIGO and Borderless magazines

Covers of Reflejos, N'DIGO and Borderless magazines

Black media has a long and illustrious history in Illinois.  The Chicago Defender was founded in 1905 by Robert S. Abbott, and attracted the likes of Langston Hughes, Ida B. Wells, and Gwendolyn Brooks. It played an essential role in reporting during the eras of segregation, Jim Crow, the Great Migration, and the Civil Rights Movement.  At its height, it’s estimated each paper sold was read by five African Americans, a weekly readership of half-a-million.  Like so many publications though, the Chicago Defender ceased print publication in 2019, and went to an online only format. Today, Latinos make up the fastest growing demographic in Illinois, growing by over 300,000 since the 2010 census.  But is there equity in access to news for native Spanish speakers in Illinois, comprising almost 15% of the state's population? We talked to leaders of Black and Latino-focused media organizations about the history and objectives of their organizations, access to news that isn't centered on white communities, and more.

This segment originally aired October 25, 2021.


Hermene Hartman

Founder and publisher of N'DIGO, a journalistic media organization based in Chicago founded in 1989.

Michelle Kanaar

Co-founder and art director of Borderless Magazine, a non-profit news outlet based in Chicago covering immigrants and communities of color.

Lord Mic Williams

President of the Peoria Black Chamber of Commerce, Marketing and Communications Director for the Illinois State Black Chamber of Commerce | Former radio host on Power 92.3 in Peoria

Linda Siete

General Manager for Reflejos, a weekly bilingual publication published by The Daily Herald Group



Prepared for web by Owen Henderson

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