Ilia Calderón

It all seemed to come together for broadcast journalist Ilia Calderón in 2017. You see in November of 2017, Calderón was named the successor to broadcast legend Maria Elena Salinas on Univision’s flagship evening newscast Noticiero Univision. The promotion makes her the first Afro-Latin to hold such a position at Univision.

If it seems like a surprise, it shouldn’t. The journalist from Chaco, Colombia has been on the grind for some time. She began her career in journalism as a presenter for several news shows, first on regional Colombian channel Teleantioquia. Then in 1998, she went on to national television for Noticiero CMI. Three years later it was off to Telemundo, where she hosted the Noticiero Telemundo weekend edition. Yet, in March 2007, even bigger opportunity beckoned and she made the jump from Telemundo to Univision to host Primer Impacto weekend edition, eventually becoming a regular co-host. See a pattern here?

However, what was perhaps her most distinguished and fearless reporting to date, occurred earlier in 2017. Calderón went into the lion’s den to interview on camera Klu Klux Klan leader Chris Barker, taking him to task on his views. A warm and fuzzy nor even politically correct welcome was to be expected, yet neither were being greeted with racial epithets, threats throughout the interview or being told by Barker that Calderón was the first black person ever to enter his property.
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Yet, she persisted! Standing her ground in what was unfiltered, raw reporting that would strike a nerve in even the most professional and seasoned reporter. It was also likely the kind of reporting that led to her to her current ground-breaking position.

Here’s hoping she continues to break new ground in 2018 and beyond.

Image Credits:
© Getty Images Entertainment/Alexander Tamargo
© Wireimage/Rodrigo Varela

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