Julian Hayda

Lake Effect Producer

Julian Hayda joined WUWM in March 2020 after producing The 21st, Illinois’ statewide NPR talk show, and Worldview, WBEZ Chicago’s long-standing global issues talk show.

Julian got his start in multimedia journalism by working in Ukrainian community media in Chicago, where he worked on stories about identity, religion, and social justice. His work at VIDIA received international recognition for TV coverage of the now-deposed Ukrainian president’s visit to the 2012 NATO Summit, among other stories. In 2013, Julian co-founded the Euromaidan Journalist Collective, which was among the first English-language teams on the ground of Ukraine’s 2013-2014 revolution and ensuing war. He directed a feature length film about the people who live under the shadow of the Chornobyl nuclear power plant, and has also worked on projects in Poland, Slovakia, Chechia, and Cuba.

Julian holds a Master’s degree in International Studies and a Bachelor’s in Film Production and Journalism, both from DePaul University. He comes from a long line of priests, and sees journalism as a perfectly logical continuation of that vocation.

Ways to Connect

Christian Kaspar-Bartke / Getty Images

The history of policing in America is somewhat unique. As WUWM explored in June, the organizations that operate as our law enforcement were forged before the Civil War, where local patrols were mandated to return stolen property: runaway Black slaves.

But many other countries have radically different approaches to law enforcement that aren’t influenced by the unique racial and economic politics of the United States.

Sometimes in a moment of social unrest, it’s hard to look past our own backyard. To keep things in a global perspective, Lake Effect has long called upon Carthage College Professor Art Cyr, author of After the Cold War.  

“The basic commitment to human freedom, to basic equality under the law as we accept in U.S., Great Britain, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and most of Europe, has become increasingly widespread since the Cold War,” says Cyr.

Samer Ghani

Social upheaval has grasped America from coast to coast in the last few weeks. It’s difficult to wrap up the pandemic, economic anxieties, racial justice, and elections all in one bundle — but they all played a hand in driving the protests over the last month. 

Jeffery Winters is Director of the Equality Development and Globalization Studies program at Northwestern University. He says much like the election of Donald Trump in 2016, many people were surprised by the magnitude of anger and frustration displayed during the protests for racial equality.

Eze Amos / Getty Images

As protests over racial justice have swept America, many are learning the hard way what their First Amendment rights entail. Like the freedom of assembly and freedom of speech, the free press has more than a few caveats too.

Leaders Igniting Transformation / Facebook

Many activist groups have been organizing and participating in protests across Milwaukee, but one of the most vocal has been Leaders Igniting Transformation (LIT). The non-white, youth-led nonprofit submitted a list of demands to the state, city and county on ways to move the needle on racial justice.

Carl Court / Getty Images

Many of us are about 12 weeks into being cooped up at home. Well, if we’ve followed public health guidelines to limit contact with other people. And even though the Wisconsin Supreme Court struck down the state's safer-at-home order, the local hotel and Airbnb industry is still feeling the effects of people taking social distancing seriously.

Petite Weddings / Facebook

There’s an old Hollywood proverb that goes, “If you want to make God laugh, tell him about your plans.”

Perhaps the most stressful plan any couple can make is a wedding. But there aren’t many laughs at the wedding chapel these days, as coronavirus guidelines have led many couples to postpone or cancel in-person gatherings.

Paul Morigi / Getty Images for Amazon

One in four working Americans have filed for unemployment benefits since the coronavirus pandemic began a couple months ago, according to the Department of Labor.

Scott Olson / Getty Images

Shortly after the coronavirus pandemic began to spread widely in America, doctors and public health authorities noticed that hospitals were disproportionately treating black patients for the virus. As local officials began to track cases, a national trend emerged: not only were black Americans more likely to contract the virus, they were also more likely to die.

School Sisters of St. Francis / Facebook

Five years ago this week, Pope Francis released his first major encyclical called Laudato Si' (a letter a bishop writes instructing his followers on how to approach major issues). Instead of taking on an abstract theological issue, he addressed “the tragic effects of environmental degradation on the lives of the world’s poorest [people]."

Jonathan Daniel / Getty Images

Earlier this month, Green Bay Packers legend Brett Favre was connected to an embezzlement scheme in his home state of Mississippi. The state auditor found that Favre had been paid $1.1 million for appearances that were never made by a nonprofit called Mississippi Community Education Center, which was funded with federal welfare grants. 

Captain Samual Eastman / National Library of Medicine / Wikimedia Commons

We recently covered how the Oneida Nation Wisconsin is turning to indigenous agricultural practices to put food on the table during the coronavirus pandemic.


The coronavirus pandemic has a lot of us rethinking the ways we put food on the table. For the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin, that has meant a return to traditional farming practices.

Instead of tilling soil and planting seeds in rows the European way, many indigenous groups in the Milwaukee area planted native crops like corn, squash, and beans in a grid of soil mounds. Sometimes they bury fish in the mounds to act as a natural fertilizer.

BlackPaint Studios

If you've driven through the intersection of First Street and Pittsburgh Avenue in Milwaukee's Walker's Point neighborhood during the last few weeks, you might have seen a bold statement painted on the windows of BlackPaint Studios: Wisconsin's Pandemic Primary = Crime Against Humanity.