Maria Elena Salinas

Called the “Voice of Hispanic America” by the New York Times, Salinas is one of the most recognized Hispanic female journalists in the United States. She is the co-anchor of the highly rated “Noticiero Univision” nightly network newscast and co-host of the news magazine “Aquí y Ahora” (Here and Now). Salinas has informed and empowered millions of viewers for more than three decades in the U.S., as well as in 18 Latin American countries. Her reputation as a serious and objective journalist has garnered her universal respect and allowed her to secure high profile interviews including Latin American heads of state, rebel leaders, dictators, and every U.S. president since Jimmy Carter.

Salinas began her journalistic career as a television reporter for KMEX-34 in Los Angeles in 1981. Her insightful reporting on the impact of daily news to the increasingly growing Hispanic community of Southern California quickly earned her the credibility that would lead to her assuming the anchor chair of “Noticiero Univision” in 1987.She has made history throughout her career presenting ground breaking news coverage such as participating in the first ever bilingual national Democratic presidential candidate debate on Hispanic issues in 2004, and again in 2007 co-hosting the first ever Democratic and Republican presidential candidate forums in Spanish on the Univision Network. In 2012, she was part of the Univision News team that won the King of Spain International Journalism Award in the “Television” category for the special “El Gran Encuentro.” This was the first time a U.S. presidential candidate addressed the Hispanic community during a campaign in this kind of format.Salinas is most comfortable on the field where she is a witness to history; among the most notable news events she has covered are natural disasters such as the earthquake in Haiti in 2010 and the tornados that swept through Oklahoma in 2013. She’s reported from the White House to the war torn streets of Baghdad. She’s sat with A-list celebrities like Jennifer Lopez, Ricky Martin and Pitbull and told stories of incredible journeys like that of the DREAMERS and of Carlos Gutierrez (the amputee who cycled his way through Texas seeking asylum). Her brand of journalism combines hard hitting reporting with an uncanny storytelling ability that extends to a variety of topics such as immigration, politics, women’s issues, and international affairs to name a few. But is at her best telling people stories.She has earned several awards, including six Emmys. Most notably, she was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, making her the first Hispanic woman to receive this recognition.  Earlier this year, she won a PEABODY Award, Walter Cronkite Award and her second Gracies® Award for her news and documentary special “Entre el abandono y el rechazo” (Between Abandonment and Rejection), a prime-time report on the exodus of Central American children to the United States, which judges have praised as “balanced and revealing.” Salinas was honored this year with a Broadcast Legend award from the Radio and Television News Association of Southern California, and was a part of the Univision News team that received the Edward R. Murrow Award for the network’s coverage of the Atlanta Olympic Park bombings in 1996.Her brand of journalism has earned her dozens of other awards and recognition from important groups such as the Mexican-American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials, The Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute, and the National Organization for Women that honored her with the coveted Intrepid Award.She has been featured as one of the “Most Influential Hispanics” in the United States in several publications including Hispanic Magazine, People En Español and PODER, and was named one of the top 15 Most Influential Hispanics among Latino voters in a poll conducted by Hispanic Voter Trends.Among her achievements, she is also a published author. Her memoir titled Yo soy la hija de mi padre: una vida sin secretos (I Am My Father’s Daughter: A Life Without Secrets) received critical acclaim and made the bestseller lists for Spanish-language books.Salinas’ namesake scholarship has been awarded since 2000 to Hispanic journalism students interested in pursuing a career in Spanish-language media. She is also one of the founding members of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, and sits on the boards of the Hispanic Scholarship Fund (HSF) and the International Women’s Media Foundation (IWMF).In addition, Salinas is the official spokesperson for “Ya Es Hora” (It’s Time), a national citizenship and civic engagement campaign that received the Peabody Award for helping motivate Hispanics to participate in the American political dialogue.Her influence extends beyond the airways; she uses social media to connect her audience and community by offering breaking news, and relevant information to her followers. With her 1 million social media followers across multiple platforms she is able to connect and inform her audience with more in depth reporting strategies and original digital content.Salinas was born in Los Angeles to Mexican immigrant parents. She resides in Coral Gables, Florida with her two daughters, Julia Alexandra and Gabriela María.

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