Our Mission

Futuro Media creates multimedia content for and about the new American mainstream in the service of empowering people to navigate the complexities of an increasingly diverse and connected world.

Who We Are

The Futuro Media Group is an independent nonprofit organization producing multimedia journalism that explores and gives a critical voice to the diversity of the American experience. Based in Harlem and founded in 2010 by award-winning journalist Maria Hinojosa, Futuro Media is committed to telling stories often overlooked by mainstream media by expanding narratives as we report on issues where we see a lack of racial equity. Futuro Media produces Peabody Award winning Latino USA, the longest running national Latino news and cultural public radio program; In The Thick, a political podcast from the perspective of journalists of color; Latino Rebels, a pioneering digital news outlet founded by Julio Ricardo Varela that reaches millions through its website, radio programming, and podcasts; and Futuro Studios, Futuro Media’s newest creative division, focusing on original podcasts and programming.

About Our Distribution Partner

PRX is a public media organization shaping the future of audio by producing and distributing content, building technology, and training talented, independent producers. It is a leading creator and distributor, connecting audio producers with the most engaged, supportive audiences across broadcast, web, and mobile. As a distributor, PRX licenses public radio programs and pieces to public radio stations across the country. With an award-winning portfolio ranging from iconic public radio programs such as The World, This American Life, Snap Judgement, The Moth Radio Hour, TED Talks Daily, The Takeaway, and Reveal, as well as a growing body of podcast-first productions, including the Radiotopia podcast network, PRX reaches more than 28.5 million listeners and generates close to 80 million podcast downloads per month.

Our Production Team

  • Maria Hinojosa

  • Maria Hinojosa

    President of Futuro Unidad Hinojosa, Anchor & Executive Producer of Latino USA

    As a reporter who was the first Latina in many newsrooms, Pulitzer Prize winner Maria Hinojosa dreamt of a space where she could create independent, multimedia journalism that explores and gives a critical voice to the diverse American experience. To that end, in 2010, she created the Futuro Media Group, an independent, nonprofit organization based in Harlem, NYC with the mission to create multimedia content for and about the new American mainstream in the service of empowering people to navigate the complexities of an increasingly diverse and connected world.

    She is the Anchor and Executive Producer of the Peabody Award-winning show Latino USA, distributed by PRX, as well as Co-Host of In The Thick, Futuro Media’s award-winning political podcast, Hinojosa has informed millions about the changing cultural and political landscape in America and abroad. She is also a contributor to the long-running, award-winning news program CBS Sunday Morning and a frequent guest on MSNBC.

    Hinojosa’s nearly 30-year career as an award-winning journalist includes reporting for PBS, CBS, WNBC, CNN, NPR, and anchoring the Emmy Award winning talk show from WGBH Maria Hinojosa: One-on-One. She is the author of two books and has won dozens of awards, including four Emmys, the John Chancellor Award, the Studs Terkel Community Media Award, two Robert F. Kennedy Awards, the Edward R. Murrow Award from the Overseas Press Club, and the Ruben Salazar Lifetime Achievement Award from the NAHJ. She has been honored with her own day in October by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and has been recognized by People En Español as one of the 25 most powerful Latina women. Additionally, Hinojosa was the first Latina to anchor a PBS FRONTLINE report: “Lost in Detention” which aired in October 2011 and was the first to explore abuse at immigrant detention facilities, garnering attention from Capitol Hill as well as both the mainstream and Spanish-language media.

    As a reporter for NPR, Hinojosa was among the first to report on youth violence in urban communities on a national scale. During her eight years as CNN’s urban affairs correspondent, Hinojosa often took viewers into communities rarely shown on television and continued that work longform on Now on PBS. At Futuro Media, Hinojosa continues to bring attention to experiences and points of view that are often overlooked or underreported in mainstream media, all while mentoring the next generation of diverse journalists to delve into authentic and nuanced stories. In 2018 she was a Fellow at Shorenstein Center at the Harvard Kennedy School and is a frequent speaker across the country. In 2019, she was named the inaugural Distinguished Journalist in Residence at her alma mater, Barnard College.

    View Posts by Maria Hinojosa
  • Peniley Ramirez

    Peniley Ramirez

    Co-Executive Producer

    As a former investigative correspondent at Univision, Peniley led several official investigations of politicians and business people in Latin America and the U.S. She participated in global investigative projects such as the Pulitzer Prize-winning “Panama Papers” and the Scripps Howard award-winning “Pandora Papers,” with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists. Ramírez brings an unparalleled set of experiences to advance the investigative work and special projects led by Maria Hinojosa.

  • Andrea López-Cruzado

  • Andrea López-Cruzado

    Senior Editor, Latino USA

    A bilingual journalist with 20 years in the field, Andrea is currently a senior editor at Latino USA.

    Andrea spent just over half of her career at Dow Jones where she worked as an editor for The Wall Street Journal Americas division. For several years, she was also the New York-area correspondent for El Comercio, her native Peru’s leading daily newspaper. After a one-year stint as a copy editor for Bloomberg News’s Spanish-language service, she entered the world of podcasts. She was Radio Ambulante’s fact-checker for over two years as well as Radio Ambulante Studios’ news-oriented podcast El Hilo.

    Andrea is also a busy freelancer. She frequently fact-checks for This American Life, Columbia Journalism Review, and Vox Media. For Election 2020, she joined Telemundo News and ProPublica’s Electionland as a fact-checker and tip- catcher, respectively.

    Finally, she is also an adjunct at the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY where she teaches research to the bilingual class.

  • Marta Martinez

    Marta Martinez

    Senior Producer

    Marta Martinez is a multimedia journalist and currently a senior producer at Latino USA. Her work has appeared on CNN, VICE, Foreign Policy, The Atlantic, Teen Vogue, Univision, Revista 5W, El País, and Le Monde among other media. She is also a creative editor at the journalistic production company Dromómanos. She helped The Fuller Project, a nonprofit newsroom covering issues that affect women globally, set up its first audience engagement and social media strategy.

    She specializes in long-form journalism, covering human rights, inequality, migration, and gender, as well as developing audience engagement strategies. She has reported on a sex-based quarantine measure that discriminated against transgender people in Panama, a community built by displaced Colombians that is now welcoming migrant Venezuelans, how the genocide trial came together in Guatemala, and why straight women are marrying each other in northern Tanzania. She is a National Geographic, International Women’s Media Foundation, and European Journalism Centre grantee. She worked as a fact-checker for The New York Times and as a researcher for The New Yorker. She’s originally from Spain, but has been living in New York for over a decade. She believes that everything tastes better with cheese.

  • Mike Sargent

    Mike Sargent

    Senior Production Manager for Latino USA

    Mike Sargent is an award winning veteran of audio disciplines including podcasts, radio, radio drama, audiobooks, film and a leading figure in the movement to cultivate diversity in public media. He started his career in theatre and film as a sound designer and won an Audelco Award for excellence in Sound Design. 

    From there Mike went on to write, produce and direct radio drama and audio books, adapting the works of such acclaimed science-fiction authors as Isaac Asimov and Arthur C. Clark. 

    A pioneering Afro-futurist, Mike was the creator-producer of the first Black science-fiction audio drama James Scott: When The World’s Need Heroes. Since then he has produced a wide range of podcasts and audio programs. 

    Currently chief film critic for WBAI RADIO’s weekly film review program, REELWORLD, and host of WBAI’s popular late night radio show, NITESHIFT. Mike co-hosts two Podcasts 2FAST 2FILMS & The BROWN & BLACK podcast for the iHeartMedia Revolver Network. And most recently is producer of THE GREAT WEALTH DIVIDE podcast for WBGO Studios, the new podcasting unit of the world-premier jazz station, based in Newark, NJ. 

  • Stephanie Lebow

    Stephanie Lebow

    Director of Engineering/Sound Designer

    Stephanie Lebow is a Peabody award-winning audio engineer for her work on Afropop Worldwide. She found her passion for radio at Indie 103.1 FM in LA, as an audio engineer, producer, and on-air personality. She got her start at WFNX, WERS, and WBOS in Boston.

    She has mixed and produced music in a multitude of genres from jazz to pop, and received an independent music award for her work. She has also mixed and done sound sweetening for indie films and documentary series such as America By The Numbers and Miss Sharon Jones!

    She graduated from Emerson College with a major in Audio Production and a minor in Broadcast Journalism. When she’s not using ProTools to build radio shows, she uses it as an instrument in her own electronic/indie project Stef Lebaux.

  • Julieta Martinelli

  • Julieta Martinelli

    Senior Producer

    Julieta Martinelli is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter and a Senior Producer at Futuro Media where she reports on injustice, immigration, and the criminal legal system for Latino USA, Futuro Studios and FUHI, Futuro’s investigative unit. She reported and co-produced Suave, a narrative podcast series about juvenile life without parole in the only nation in the world that still allows children to be sentenced to die in prison. Suave was recognized by the International Documentary Association as 2021’s best audio documentary series and was the recipient of the 2022 Pulitzer Prize in audio reporting.

    As Soros Justice Media Fellow, she spent over a year traveling alone and collecting stories of asylum seekers stuck in Mexican shelters, documenting the human repercussions of changing legal policies along the U.S.- Mexico border. She previously covered the criminal legal system, policing, and immigration for Nashville Public Radio. Among other awards, her work was recognized by the Tennessee Associated Press three years in a row with first place awards in investigative reporting (audio). Her reporting helped lead to the release from prison of two incarcerated men, one of which had spent nearly two decades wrongfully convicted.

    Her stories about immigrant youth, life in prison —and what happens after— have aired nationally on NPR programs including Here and Now, Morning Edition, and All Things Considered, and her original reporting has been discussed in WAMU’s 1A, the BBC, NBC and other national news outlets. She spent the first part of her career covering immigration, culture, and music for Spanish-language print publications in Georgia.

    In between, due to her legal status, she worked a number of non-journalism jobs, including making tacos in a drive-thru, working at a music recording studio, eventually helping run one of the biggest nightlife companies in the state, to later helping lawyers representing undocumented and incarcerated clients, all of which she credits equally as the foundation, and sources of important lessons, on how to approach her work, and the people she writes about today.

    View Posts by Julieta Martinelli
  • Julia Caruso

    Julia Caruso

    Senior Audio Engineer

    Julia Caruso got her start in radio as a broadcast engineer for CBS Radio. Prior to working at Futuro Media, she was the Studio Manager for the Music Technology program at New York University overseeing the recording studios and mentoring students. She is an active member of the Audio Engineering Society and has been on the convention committee for their annual international convention in NYC for several years. She holds a bachelor degree in Music Technology and a masters degree in Food Studies, both from NYU. Learning about culture through food and music is a passion of hers.

  • Nour Saudi

    Nour Saudi

    Lead Producer, Futuro Investigates/Latino USA

    Nour Saudi is a lead producer at FUHi, Futuro Media’s investigative unit and Latino USA. Most recently she led and oversaw production on the Radical Imagination podcast for PolicyLink and at In The Thick, Futuro’s weekly politics podcast. She is an alumna from the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism. She envisions a just and equitable media industry as one that goes beyond representation and actively and unequivocally calls out the harmful policies being enacted against historically marginalized communities

  • Jeanne Montalvo

    Jeanne Montalvo

    Producer

    Jeanne Montalvo is a Grammy-nominated audio engineer and radio producer. She spent almost a decade working in music recording before breaking into radio after receiving her Masters in Music Technology from New York University. She has worked as an audio engineer and producer for NPR, Bloomberg Radio, the Duolingo podcast and projects for the New York Times and Sony.

    As a radio producer, she focuses on music and culture stories ranging from the inner workings of growing up bilingual to now parenting bilingual children, as well as telling the stories of music icons past and present like Yma Sumac. She is the creator of “Live from Latino USA” a live and (mostly) unplugged video series that features Latinx talent from Jessie Reyez to Jose Feliciano.

    When she’s not taking a deep dive into her latest story, she stays involved with the music industry as much as she can. In 2017, she was nominated for a Grammy Award as Mastering Engineer for Vladimir Horowitz: The Unreleased Live Recordings, and her recording of Multiverse by Bobby Sanabria’s Latin Jazz Big Band was nominated for Best Latin Jazz Album at the 2012 Grammy Awards. In 2018, she was selected as the EQL resident, a residency developed specifically for women engineers, to work at the Spotify and Electric Lady Studios in New York City.

    View Posts by Jeanne Montalvo
  • Victoria Estrada

    Victoria Estrada

    Producer

    Before getting into audio, Victoria worked in academia, in media, and as a freelance translator. In 2016, she co-founded Máquina de Coser, an artistic project focused on sound experimentation. And in 2020, she was a recipient of the Adelante Fellowship from the International Women’s Media Foundation to report from Tapachula, on the Mexico-Guatemala border. Before joining Latino USA, she was an editor at Radio Ambulante, NPR’s award winning Spanish language podcast.

  • Reynaldo Leaños Jr.

    Reynaldo Leaños Jr.

    Producer

    Reynaldo Leaños Jr. is a producer at Latino USA and is based in the Rio Grande Valley of south Texas. Leaños is an award winning journalist who recently covered the U.S.-Mexico border and immigration for Texas Public Radio. While at TPR, his work was frequently featured on NPR’s national news shows like Morning Edition, All Things Considered and Weekend Edition, as well as NPR’s newscasts.

    Prior to joining TPR, Leaños was a freelance journalist in the Rio Grande Valley and in New York City. His work has appeared on PRX’s The World and Global Nation, NBC News, Latino USA and KUT’s Texas Standard.

    He has an undergraduate degree from Texas State University, where he studied journalism and international studies. Leaños also has a master’s degree from the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY, where he specialized in international reporting.

    View Posts by Reynaldo Leaños Jr.
  • Luis Luna

    Luis Luna

    Marketing Manager

    Luis Luna joins Futuro Media Group after working in the Theatrical Department at GKIDS. He has also worked on the programming teams at various film festivals, including Hamptons International Film Festival, Brooklyn Film Festival, and others. He received a dual B.A. in Film Studies and English from Hunter College. Born and raised in Jackson Heights, his favorite things include queer cinema, world travel, dancing to Rihanna, and a good cemita.

    View Posts by Luis Luna

Our Administrative Team

  • Stacy Parker Le Melle

  • Stacy Parker Le Melle

    Vice President for Development and Communications

    Stacy Parker Le Melle is in her seventh year at Futuro stewarding and cultivating funding support for our independent, nonprofit journalism and original programming. In addition, Stacy is an author, teacher, and non-profit administrator who previously served as communications director and workshop director for the Afghan Women’s Writing Project. She is the author of Government Girl: Young and Female in the White House (Ecco/HarperCollins) and served as primary contributor to Voices from the Storm: the People of New Orleans on Hurricane Katrina and Its Aftermath and created The Katrina Experience: an Oral History Project. Her essay “Ferry Cross the Mersey” was selected for publication as one of the winners of the 2021 Thornwillow Patrons’ Prize. She served as Executive Editor of “Solidarity Works” for W.K.Kellogg Foundation’s Solidarity Council on Racial Equity. In 2020, she was named a NYSCA/NYFA Artist Fellow for Nonfiction Literature. She recently served as a parent representative and communications chair for the Manhattan Country School Board of Trustees. She founded the community effort Harlem Against Violence, Homophobia, and Transphobia and co-founded and curates Harlem’s First Person Plural Reading Series. She previously served in the Clinton West Wing as both an aide and advance person.

  • Yolanda Moore

    Yolanda Moore

    Director of Administration

    Yolanda comes to Futuro Media with over 15 years of nonprofit administration and management experience. She received her Master’s Degree in International Affairs with a focus on Human Rights and Governance from The New School in New York City. She has a passion for women’s rights issues and completed two practicum programs aimed at combating institutions of gender bias within communities. The first focused on developing a WASH oriented Girls’ School Retention pilot program in Tembaro, Ethiopia, with WEEMA International, whereas the second was a skills development communications initiative in India with UN Women. In her spare time, she volunteers and does consulting work. She enjoys traveling, karaoke, cooking and just being with her friends and family.

  • Jessica Ellis

    Jessica Ellis

    Supervising Senior Production Manager

    Jessica comes to Futuro Media with over 10 years of TV production management experience for such broadcast networks and platforms as Bravo, Discovery, Disney, and Apple Beats by Dre to name a few. She is a graduate of Howard University and was a professional modern dancer and teacher for 20 years. She is excited to bring her love of art and organization to the Futuro Team. She is a homeschooling mother of two and enjoys traveling, gardening, and being with loved ones.

  • Danetsy Len

    Danetsy Len

    Development Manager

    Danetsy Len comes to Futuro Media after five years of fundraising on behalf of DKMS, an international bone marrow donor center. Previously she worked in development at the Madison Square Boys & Girls Club—after a series of college internships convinced her that nonprofit fundraising was a great way to mix community impact with the skills learned from an undergraduate business degree. At the University of Pennsylvania, she majored in Economics with a concentration in management as well as minored in Latin American and Latino Studies. A native of Panama who grew up in California’s Central Valley, she is excited to join the Futuro team and champion underrepresented voices in media. When not at work, she wakes up way too early to watch soccer games, reads through cookbooks, and tries not to trip over her feet while taking dance classes.

  • Nancy Trujillo

    Nancy Trujillo

    Project Manager

    Nancy is a world traveler, a New Yorker, Latina, Mexican-American. After graduating from Barnard College, Nancy began working at Futuro Media Group as Maria’s assistant. She took time to travel the world and worked with young adults doing service-based projects. Nancy is back at Futuro. One of her favorite countries is Mongolia, she loves chocolate chip cookies, animals, and her bike. Nancy is passionate about social justice and making this world a better place.

  • Glorimar Marquez

    Glorimar Marquez

    Executive / Production Assistant for Maria Hinojosa

    After studying nursing in Venezuela, her home country, Glorimar moved to New York City, where she attended LaGuardia Community College and is now at Columbia University pursuing a Creative Writing Degree. After years of avidly listening to podcasts, Glorimar discovered her passion for audio production and started her journey at Futuro Media as Maria’s assistant and production assistant. She loves restaurants, museums, subversive storytelling, and pop culture.