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Hugo Balta was recently promoted to executive editor at The Chicago Reporter. Photo Courtesy of The Chicago Reporter.
Hugo Balta was recently promoted to executive editor at The Chicago Reporter. Photo Courtesy of The Chicago Reporter.

Hugo Balta gets promoted to executive editor at the Chicago Reporter

The award-winning journalist and former NAHJ president originally joined the publication in early 2021 as associate editor.

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The Chicago Reporter recently announced that it has promoted Hugo Balta as its new executive editor. 

Balta is an award-winning journalist, newsroom leader, and multimedia news executive with three decades of experience working in both English and Spanish language media. 

He originally joined The Chicago Reporter in February 2021 as associate editor, helping guide the reporting the publication has been known for over the years — inclusively reflecting the diverse communities of the Chicago area by writing about race, poverty, social justice and other topics. 

As executive editor, Balta will now have the opportunity to do so in an expanded capacity, driving the organization’s purpose to root out social and racial inequities toward a more just society. 

“We had gotten to a point where it became clear that running The Chicago Reporter would require another person dedicated to editorial strategy and oversight — someone with a strong sense of our stakeholders and deep knowledge in investigative journalism,” Chicago Reporter publisher Nicole Trottie said in a statement. 

“We are fortunate to have someone of Hugo’s caliber step into the Executive Editor role to steer our strategic efforts and continue driving value for the TCR community,” she continued.

Balta is a lifetime member of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists (NAHJ), an organization in which he twice served as president of its board of directors (2012-2014 and 2018-2020). He is also a member of the organization’s Hall of Fame, having been inducted in 2016. 

In a word, Balta noted that he is “grateful” for the opportunity to help lead The Chicago Reporter, which he describes as “a trusted news necessity for the community.”

He added that the mission that helped launch the publication in 1972 “is as relevant today as it was when the publication was founded.”

“Mr. Balta’s passion for racial equity and social justice aligns powerfully with the mission and vision of TCR. We look forward to the ways the rich tradition and legacy of TCR will be deepened under Balta’s editorial leadership and the collective visioning alongside [the] publisher,” said Dr. Waltrina Middleton, executive director of the Community Renewal Society. 

“We are pleased to see him ascend to this new role after being a valued member of our team over the past year and a half.”

In addition to his work as a journalist and editor, Balta is also an adjunct professor at Columbia College Chicago, where he teaches broadcast journalism classes. He is also a valued media consultant. 

Throughout his career, Balta has shown an unwavering commitment to the media landscape as he is also the owner and publisher of the Latino News Network, overseeing the only English language news and information outlet made up of independent local websites dedicated to Hispanics in the northeast and midwest. 

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