María Elena Salinas

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María Elena Salinas
María Elena Salinas.jpg
Born Los Angeles, California U.S. 1954
Nationality American
Alma mater University of California, Los Angeles
Awards 2015 Peabody Award[1]
News and Investigative Reporting

Peabody Award-winning anchor, María Elena Salinas, who is described as the “Voice of Hispanic America” by the New York Times,[2] is one of the most recognized and influential journalists in the United States.

Since 1987, she anchors Noticiero Univision the most watched newscast by American Hispanics. Since 2000, she is also a co-host on Aquí y Ahora (Here and Now), a news magazine also on Univision. Salinas delivers news and information that empowers millions of viewers across the Americas including 18 Latin American countries [3] and reaches a multitude of audiences across digital platforms and social media.[4] In the course of her career, Salinas has covered most of the major stories of the day—not only witnessing history, but making history as a trail-blazing Latina journalist.

Life and career[edit]

An embodiment of the American Dream,[5] Salinas began her journalistic career as a reporter, anchor and public affairs host for KMEX-34 in 1981. Her insightful reporting on the impact of daily news to the increasingly growing Hispanic community in Southern California quickly earned her the credibility that would lead to her assume the anchor chair of the national Spanish language news program, “Noticiero Univision” in 1987.

Her reputation as a serious, objective and highly trustworthy journalist has garnered her universal respect and allowed her to secure high-profile interviews with prominent global figures, ranging from Latin American Heads of State to Zapatista Army of National Liberation spokesman Subcomandante Marcos and every U.S. President since Jimmy Carter. In 2004, Salinas was a moderator of the first-ever bilingual national Democratic presidential candidate debate on Hispanic issues and three years later she co-hosted the first-ever Democratic and Republican presidential candidate forums in Spanish on the Univision Network.

From interviews with A-list celebrities such as Jennifer Lopez,[6] Ricky Martin and Gloria Estefan and reporting to the struggles of the Dreamers and the plight of refugees and immigrants, Salinas’ direct line of questioning and reporting uncovers incredible journeys and hard-hitting truths. Among the first female journalists to report from the war-torn streets of Baghdad, she has been on the front lines courageously covering elections around the globe, dictatorships, drug traffickers, Latin American guerrilla insurgencies, and epic disasters including Haiti’s earthquake in 2010 and the tornadoes that swept through Oklahoma in 2013.

Valued for her knowledge and expertise on Hispanic issues, she has been interviewed by noted journalists, Katie Couric[7] and Bill Moyers,[8] among others.

Public Service & Philanthropy[edit]

Focused on her mission to empower the Latino community, for nearly two decades Salinas has worked as a volunteer with NALEO, the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials, encouraging immigrants to vote and participate in the political process. The program has grown to become a Peabody Award-winning initiative entitled “Ya Es Hora” (It’s Time) for which she serves as the official spokesperson.

Salinas is one of the founders of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists and was inducted into the association's Hall of Fame in 2006. Firm in her commitment to empower the next generation, she sponsors the Maria Elena Salinas Scholarship for college students interested in Spanish news broadcasting. She also sits on the boards of the Hispanic Scholarship Fund [9] and the International Women’s Media Foundation.[10] For these efforts and more, Salinas is a recipient of the coveted Intrepid Award from NOW, the National Organization for Women, and has been honored by organizations including the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute, among others.

Notable Awards & Recognitions[edit]

Celebrated by her peers in the news industry for her excellence in political television journalism, integrity and focus on humanity, Salinas’ straightforward approach to storytelling has resulted in numerous awards and distinctions.

In 2015 alone, she has won a PEABODY Award, Walter Cronkite Award and 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."[11] [12] [13] [14]

Additionally, she is the recipient of the 2014 Broadcast Legend Award from the Radio and Television News Association of Southern California.[15] In 2012, she received an Emmy Award for Lifetime Achievement from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences .[16] Earlier in her career, Salinas was 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.


Salinas' parents immigrated to the United States from Mexico in the 1940s. She was born in [17] Los Angeles in 1954. As a child, she lived in Mexico for 7 years, and was reared in Los Angeles. Since 1991, Salinas has lived in Miami with her 2 daughters, Julia Alexandra and Gabriela Maria.


On April 11, 2006 her autobiography, Yo Soy la Hija de mi Padre (I Am my Father's Daughter) was released as a hardback edition. When María Elena accidentally discovered her deceased father had once been a Catholic priest, all she knew was suddenly thrown into question. Turning her investigative eye on herself for the first time, she began a long, arduous journey for answers.[18] A former columnist, her work in both English and Spanish was distributed by King Features Syndicate.[19][20]


  1. ^ "Univision's Salinas Wins PEABODY Award,". April 2015. 
  2. ^ ""Voice of (Hispanic) America", The New York Times,". April 30, 2006. 
  3. ^ "Univision Corporate Communications María Elena Salinas Bio". 
  4. ^ "@MariaESalinas". 
  5. ^ "Salinas in PBS' LATINO AMERICANS documentary special,". 
  6. ^ "Jennifer López habla con María Elena Salinas on 'Aqui y Ahora'". November 12, 2014. 
  7. ^ "Maria Elena Salinas of Univision appears on KATIE". February 8, 2013. 
  8. ^ "Bill Moyers' The Rise of Hispanic America". October 4, 2012. 
  9. ^ "Hispanic Scholarship Fund, Salinas, Board Member Bio". 
  10. ^ "Board and Staff". Retrieved October 13, 2013. 
  11. ^ "Salinas Receives Broadcast Legend Award". January 2015. 
  12. ^ "Univision's Salinas Wins Gracies Award for Special News Documentary". 
  13. ^ "Maria Elena Salinas receives prestigious 2015 Peabody Award for hard-hitting news & documentary special, 'Entre el abandono y el rechazo' (Between Abandonment and Rejection)". 
  14. ^ "Univision Wins Cronkite Investigative Awards, 'Adweek". March 11, 2015. 
  15. ^ "Salinas Receives 2014 Broadcast Legend Award from the Radio and Television News Association of Southern California". 2015. 
  16. ^ "Univision`s Award-Winning Journalists Jorge Ramos and Maria Elena Salinas Honored with Lifetime Achievement Awards from the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences". Oct 2, 2012. 
  17. ^ Allocca, Kevin (October 28, 2009). "SO WHAT DO YOU DO, MARÍA ELENA SALINAS, UNIVISION NETWORK NEWS ANCHOR?". Retrieved November 21, 2014. 
  18. ^ "Maria Elena Salinas". Maria Elena Salinas. Retrieved 12 June 2010. 
  19. ^ "Salinas ends syndicated column". February 1, 2011. 
  20. ^ "I am my Father's Daughter: Living a Life without Secrets". April 3, 2007. 

External links[edit]