The Women’s Media Center announced today a special Women’s History Month event, The Legacy of Jovita Idar, celebrating the launch of WMC IDAR/E, the Women’s Media Center’s English/Spanish channel that spotlights the voices and impact of diverse Latinas on a range of current and emerging issues.
Journalists will discuss the channel’s inspiration, and the invaluable role of Latina writers, educators, and activists. Wednesday, March 10th at 3:00 p.m. ET. The panel features: Michelle García, journalist, essayist, filmmaker and recipient of the 2021 American Mosaic Journalism Prize; Maria Hinojosa, journalist, author and Futuro Media founder; Monica Muñoz Martínez, professor, UT Austin, and author; and Erica González Martínez, Founding Editor of WMC IDAR/E.
Gloria Steinem, Co-Founder of the Women’s Media Center, will give opening remarks; Janet Dewart Bell, WMC Board Chair, will give closing remarks.
To register for The Legacy of Jovita Idar, click here.
WMC IDAR/E, which launched in September, takes its inspiration from the legendary and atrevida journalist and activist Jovita Idar. In the early 1900s, Idar denounced the lynching of Mexicans and Mexican Americans by vigilantes and Texas Rangers. She wrote in publications like La Cronica and El Progreso about educational and economic inequities, condemned racism and racial violence, and advocated for the rights of women.
“More of us are learning about the force that was Jovita Idar, who refused to back down against attempts to squash her First Amendment rights,” said Julie Burton, President and CEO of the Women’s Media Center. "Latinas have long brought a fierce commitment to journalism, yet, more than a century later, as our “Status of Women of Color in News Media” report underscores, only 1.76% of all newsroom leaders are Latinas, and Latinas represent only 2.47% of rank and file journalists in print. The WMC IDAR/E channel will elevate and amplify Latinas as the leaders and experts the broader public should be learning from."
WMC IDAR/E aims to increase the number and visibility of Latinx voices across a range of issues and inform and lead national conversations.
Erica González Martínez, founding editor and former opinion page editor of El Diario/La Prensa, said that the site will publish year-round.
“WMC IDAR/E elevates the voices of progressive, diverse, feminist Latinas who are leading the charge to rewrite Chile’s constitution, holding our community accountable for the treatment of blackness, or demanding that immigration policy be overhauled,” said González Martínez. “With our stellar advisory committee, we look forward to shaping conversations through hard-hitting think pieces that connect the dots around power and disrupt tropes about our community.”
WMC IDAR/E is telling a fuller portrait of the United States — offering stories that otherwise would not be known, said WMC Co-Founder Gloria Steinem. “This is a multi-cultural nation and we are all citizens of an even more multi-cultural world, yet our education and our media have rarely reflected this. I’m grateful to the Latinas who have been breaking through this isolation, in every area, from workers’ rights to leadership in film, radio, television, publishing and the on-line world.”
“Erica is a brilliant journalist and visionary,” said WMC Board Chair Janet Dewart Bell. “We are very proud of her work as founding editor of WMC IDAR/E. Representation and equality in media are needed today more than ever.”
WMC IDAR/E’s expert advisory board of ground-breaking Latina journalists and writers includes García, who conceptualized the name of the channel, Michelle Herrera Mulligan, a writer and editor; and Sofia Quintero, author of several novels and short stories.
The channel has included essays and opinions about Latina identity thieves, the effort by Latinas to transform America’s newsrooms, the historic transformation in Chile led by women and what C-suites must do to respond to demands for racial justice.
Bombilla, a branding & design agency for social change founded and led by Ivellisse Morales, came up with the logo and look for this new channel.
Other WMC online and on-air journalism channels include the podcast and radio show, Women’s Media Center Live with Robin Morgan, WMC Features, WMC Women Under Siege, WMC FBomb, WMC Climate and WMC Speech Project.
The Women’s Media Center, co-founded by Jane Fonda, Robin Morgan, and Gloria Steinem, is an inclusive feminist organization that works to raise the visibility, viability, and decision-making power of women and girls in media to ensure that their stories get told and their voices are heard. They do this by researching media through the WMC Media Lab; creating and modeling original online and on-air journalism; training women and girls to be effective in media; and promoting women experts in all fields through WMC SheSource.