LaToya Dennis

News Reporter

LaToya Dennis joined WUWM in October 2006 as a reporter / producer. LaToya began her career in public radio as a part-time reporter for WKAR AM/FM in East Lansing, Michigan. She worked as general assignment reporter for WKAR for one and a half years while working toward a master's degree in Journalism from Michigan State University. While at WKAR, she covered General Motors plant closings, city and state government, and education among other critical subjects.

Before coming to public radio, LaToya interned at the CBS affiliate in Lansing, Michigan. She also took part in NPR's 2005 Next Generation Radio Project in Kansas City, Missouri as well as NPR's summer 2006 Next Generation Radio Project in Indianapolis, Indiana.

LaToya holds both a Bachelor's degree and a Masters degree in journalism from Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan. Dennis is a member of the National Association of Black Journalists.

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Louna LePoivre

Jewish residents from across the Milwaukee area gathered outside the local Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) office Thursday. They were protesting conditions at detention centers along the southern border of the U.S. Similar protests have been taking place across the country.

The mood was sometimes somber as protesters gathered outside the Department of Homeland Security building in downtown Milwaukee, chanting and singing. Their goal: to show support for people being detained by ICE because they don't have the correct documentation. 

CHICCODODIFC / FOTOLIA

Updated at 11:17 a.m. CT  

On Tuesday, the Milwaukee Common Council confirmed Griselda Aldrete as the new executive director of the Fire and Police Commission (FPC). The final vote of the council was: 10 in favor, three abstentions, one no.

Mayor Tom Barrett nominated Aldrete to serve as the head of the Milwaukee FPC. The nomination passed the Public Safety and Health Committee on a three-to-one vote with Alderwoman Nakiya Dodd voting against and Alderwoman Chantia Lewis abstaining.

LaToya Dennis

Driving in Milwaukee can be a harrowing experience. From people whipping by passing in bike and bus lanes to people blowing through red lights.

On Monday, city leaders announced a new program aimed at ending reckless driving. The public-private pilot program is being made possible by donations from private companies.

READ: City Of Milwaukee & Milwaukee County Join Forces To Tackle Reckless Driving

justasc / stock.adobe.com

Should attorneys in Wisconsin be required to pay dues and join the State Bar?

That’s the question in a federal lawsuit filed by a Milwaukee based conservative think tank — the Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty (WILL). Thirty-two states, including Wisconsin, have such systems. For years, Rick Esenberg says some attorneys here have been pushing to get rid of the mandate.

Maayan Silver

Up until last year, any person in Wisconsin who had sexual contact with a child between the ages of 13 and 16 could be charged with a felony. But that law has changed.

If you’ve ever driven down South 27 Street in Franklin, Wis., you know there are a lot of motels there. El Rancho, the Knotty Pine, Sunrise, Modern 41, Embassy, the Oakwood and the list goes on and on. My count: 10 within a 2-mile drive, which takes about three minutes.

Over the years, lots of people have written to Bubbler Talk asking about those motels. The most recent question came from a guy named Don Gloo:

Angelina Mosher Salazar

Milwaukee is expected to be a hotbed of political activity this presidential election cycle.

This week, the city will host the national convention for the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC). The organization was founded in 1929 and is the oldest and the largest Latino civil rights organization in the country. It’s expected to bring an influx of 15,000-20,000 people to the city. 

Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Updated on July 3 at 10:48 a.m. CT

A three-judge panel has dismissed a federal lawsuit challenging Republican-drawn legislative boundaries in the wake of a key U.S. Supreme Court ruling. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled June 27 that federal courts have no place in policing political district boundaries.

READ: Supreme Court Rules Partisan Gerrymandering Is Beyond The Reach Of Federal Courts

ambrozinio / stock.adobe.com

Reckless driving is a problem in a lot of places, especially the city of Milwaukee.

The city and the county have teamed up to tackle the issue. On Monday, the task force looking at the issue held another meeting. 

The number of fatalities due to car accidents is down, according to the Milwaukee Police Department (MPD). But driving around the city can sometimes feel like a harrowing experience: people speeding by in the bike lane on the right, running red lights, and sometimes even people driving in the lane of oncoming traffic attempting to speed by you.

Library of Congress

It’s been 100 years since women in the U.S. gained the right to vote with the passage of the 19th Amendment. And Wisconsin led the way: it was the first state to ratify the amendment.

On Monday, elected officials, prominent Wisconsinites and members of the public gathered at the State Capitol building to celebrate. While many took the opportunity to praise the state and the historical significance of what happened on June 10, 1919, others pointed out that the suffrage movement and women winning the right to vote did not apply to all women.

ChiccoDodiFC / stock.adobe.com

Two people are in custody in Waukesha County after an officer involved shooting on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, three Waukesha County Sheriff's Department deputies have been placed on administrative duty. The department is not yet releasing names of those involved. But the shooting occurred after a standoff, when a Department of Natural Resources (DNR) employee pursued stolen vehicle.

CHICCODODIFC / FOTOLIA

The Milwaukee Common Council Wednesday overwhelmingly voted against approving Denise Bartlett for a seat on the Fire and Police Commission.

Mayor Tom Barrett nominated her to the panel, which oversees the fire and police departments. Bartlett worked for the police department for 28 years before retiring. She took questions from aldermen for nearly two hours. But in the end, many council members didn't think she was fit for the position.

Courtesy of Sabrina Foulks-Thomas

In recent years, a number of black and brown women in Milwaukee have become doulas, and now there’s also a push to train more midwives of color. These trained, licensed medical professionals deliver babies in hospitals, birthing centers, and at homes.

Sabrina Foulks-Thomas, who is black, is one of those midwives. She has done this work for the past three years.

While there are midwives in Milwaukee who have worked in the field for decades, Foulks-Thomas says she recognizes the impact she can have as a black woman.

LaToya Dennis

The city of Milwaukee and Milwaukee County are investing in doulas in hopes reducing the number of black babies who die before the age of one.

READ: Wisconsin has the highest infant mortality rate for black babies in the country. Why?

While doulas don’t have medical training, they do provide emotional, physical and mental support to families before, during and after the arrival of a baby.

digitalskillet1 / Adobe Stock

So for a lot of families, there’s this thing that happens when they find out they’re expecting a baby. Once they get past the Is this really happening? stage and all the excitement that can come with knowing you’re growing a life, in can set the worry.

Am I eating the right foods? Am I getting enough sleep? Is this safe for the baby? Is my baby moving enough? How will…. What if… and on, and on.

For me, this was personal. 2018 was a monumental year for my family.

My husband and I welcomed our daughter.

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