The Center for Community Media at the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism has appointed Jesenia De Moya Correa as its new Latino Media Initiative Director. Starting on June 20, 2023, Correa — an adjunct professor at City College and J-School alumna from the Class of 2017 — will join the team, bringing her expertise and passion to the position.
“The J-School has always been a second-second home to me … El buen hijo siempre vuelve a casa — the good child always returns home,” Correa said, reflecting on how she feels about returning to her alma mater.
Newmark J-School Dean Graciela Mochkofsky is “thrilled to welcome back” an alumna to head the Latino Media Initiative. Correa “was a stellar member of our inaugural class of bilingual journalism students, and she did an impressive job as the Latinx community reporter at the Philadelphia Inquirer,” Mochkofsky noted.
During her time at the Inquirer, Correa created a Spanish-language site called El Inquirer, to deliver online news, features, and service journalism for Hispanic and Latinx populations in the greater Philadelphia area. She also contributed to the development of the outlet’s Communities and Engagement desk and established content exchange agreements with traditional media outlets in the Caribbean.
As a student, Correa’s minor was in health and science reporting. She added to her credentials in this area by becoming one of the 13 journalists chosen for the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing’s inaugural National Science-Health-Environment Reporting Fellowship.
It is this experience she hopes to lean on during her time at CCM, explaining: “The health and environmental crises we have experienced in recent years have highlighted the impact that community media has within their ecosystems in moments of need and despair.” She added that as the larger journalism industry increasingly acknowledges this, there has been a “tilting [of] community media makers and journalists to the center of the conversations and programs that advocate for journalism innovation and sustainability.”
Correa will be joining CCM colleagues who lead the Asian Media Initiative, Black Media Initiative, and critical efforts like the Advertising Boost Initiative and training programs aimed at providing resources and additional revenue streams for community media.
Mochkofsky said, “Jesenia brings a much-needed community-based understanding of the Latinx population’s information needs. I am eager to see where she takes the Latino Media Initiative, and how she reinvents our popular Latino Media Summit.”
Correa’s leadership of the initiative will be “pivotal in helping to develop strategies to support community media outlets to become sustainable. This includes efforts in reporting, research, and training, and nurturing collaborative relationships with partners across the country,” said CCM’s Executive Director Mikhael Simmonds.
In addition to her leadership and community engagement work, Correa understands what it means to be a community reporter. Her work has appeared in outlets like Yale Climate Connections, El Diario NY, Voice of America, Salta Pa’trás Films, Diario Libre, Radio Santa María, and Listín Diario.
In recognition of her work, Correa was a finalist for the Newmark J-School’s 2018 Sidney Hillman Social Justice Reporting Prize, the 2017 Eppy Awards, and the Society of Professional Journalists’ 2018 Mark of Excellence Awards. She has won fellowships from The Lenfest Institute and was nominated by the general public for Al Día News Media’s Women of Merit Awards.
Her appointment comes at a time when Latino and immigrant communities are a large part of post-pandemic economic renewal across the United States. Correa emphasized that this is the time “when we need to focus on the overall sustainability of the Latino news media, which widely influences the day-to-day lives of our people.”