Michael Puente has been an award-winning Chicago area journalist for nearly 20 years, covering stories for print, magazine and broadcast.
In February 2006, Michael joined Chicago Public Media, WBEZ 91.5 FM as a reporter for its Northwest Indiana bureau in Chesterton, Indiana, the station’s first news bureau. WBEZ's new Northwest Indiana Bureau opened in July 2012. It's located at 111 W. Hack, Crown Point, Indiana. The number is (219) 310-8169.
Michael covers politics, environment, immigration and regional issues in Northwest Indiana, Chicago’s Southeast side and Chicago’s southern suburbs.
Michael also spent 13 years as a print journalist. He spent 11 years writing for the Post-Tribune of Northwest Indiana, which is part of the Chicago Sun-Times Media Group. He also worked two years with the Daily Herald in Arlington Heights, Ill., the third-largest newspaper in Illinois, where he covered various northwest suburban communities as well as stories relating to Hispanic community.
He also co-hosted the Latin Lingo show on WJOB 1230 AM in Hammond, Indiana in 2005.
In 2004, Michael was named among the “Top 50 Most Influential people in Indiana Politics” by the Howey Political Report in Indianapolis for his investigative and political coverage for the Post-Tribune.
Since joining the staff of WBEZ, Michael has received numerous awards for his stories, including being named in 2008 “Best Reporter” by the Indiana Associated Press Broadcasters Association.
He won a total of seven first place awards in 2011 for his stories, including Best Investigative piece, Coverage of the Environment and Coverage of Minority Issues by the Indiana Society of Professional Journalists.
Michael’s reports have been aired from coast to coast on NPR’s All Things Considered, Weekend Edition, as well as Public Radio International, WFYI in Indianapolis, WNYC’s The Takeaway in New York City, and the BBC, as well as WBEZ’s sister station, Vocalo 89.5 FM.
Michael has also contributed stories for Café Magazine in Chicago and Northwest Indiana Business Quarterly Magazine.
Michael has a B.A. in Journalism from Calumet College of St. Joseph in Hammond, Ind., where he now works as an adjunct professor.
A big White Sox, Bulls and Bears fan, Michael and his wife Gricela are parents to daughters Stephanie and Jessica.
You can send Michael an email at email@example.com or call him at (219) 310-8169 (Crown Point), (312) 948-4656 (Navy Pier office), (312) 342-0056 (cell), 312-948-4836 (fax).
You can also follow him on Facebook and Twitter: @MikePuenteNews.