Becky Vevea | WBEZ
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Becky Vevea

Becky Vevea

Political Reporter

Becky Vevea is a political reporter for WBEZ. She covers Chicago’s City Council, the Mayor, and the many departments that determine how the city functions. Prior to covering politics, she covered public education and the Chicago Public Schools for five years. 

Her recent work has uncovered falsified graduation data at Chicago high schools, examined how school construction projects propel the city’s deep segregation, and looked at how Illinois funds its public schools. 

In 2013, Becky became the youngest recipient of the Daniel Schorr Journalism Prize for her coverage of Chicago’s 50 school closings. The Schorr prize is awarded to one public radio journalist under 35 each year. She has also won three 1st place awards from the Education Writers Association, a Lisagor Award from the Chicago Headline Club and a 1st place award from the Public Radio News Directors Inc.

Prior to joining WBEZ in 2012, Becky covered public education for the Chicago News Cooperative and before that, she worked at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel as an education and general assignment reporter. Her work has also been published in The New York Times and USA Today.

Becky holds a B.A. in Journalism and Spanish from University of Wisconsin - Madison. She grew up in rural central Wisconsin and currently lives in Chicago’s Uptown neighborhood with her husband

Recent Stories


Chicago’s Elections Are Feb. 26. Here’s Your Crib Sheet

In addition to the mayoral race, all city-wide officials and 50 aldermanic seats will be on the ballot. These are the races to watch.

On Background: WBEZ's Politics Podcast

Do Endorsements Matter?

Newspapers, unions, and even celebrities are throwing their weight — and in some cases, money — behind their choice for Chicago’s next mayor. This week, the WBEZ politics team digs in to a time-honored political tradition: endorsements. Do they still matter in 2019?

On Background: WBEZ's Politics Podcast

Help! I don’t know who to vote for!

How the heck is a Chicago voter supposed to make sense of a mayor’s race with 14 candidates? Well, you’ve got about two weeks to figure that out. So WBEZ has cooked up a nifty way to help you choose which candidate you most align with, and our reporters answer some of your questions. Deep breath.


Why Some Votes May Not Count In Chicago’s City Clerk Race

A court challenge means some votes for city clerk may not count, but an election board spokesman says that doesn’t mean they’d be wasted.

On Background: WBEZ's Politics Podcast

Feds Investigate City Hall: Sex, Drugs, and Not-So-Happy Endings?

A second alderman is in the crosshairs of federal authorities. Last week, Ald. Danny Solis (25th) was revealed to be wearing a wire in the case against powerful Alderman Ed Burke (14th). This week, a series of stories from the Chicago Sun-Times explains why Solis’ has been cooperating with the FBI. Turns out, the feds built a case against him in 2014, involving Viagra, a massage parlor, and a party at Oprah’s former farm, as well as lots of personal spending from campaign accounts. The 120-page affidavit obtained by the Sun Times also outlined a meeting Solis arranged between a Chinese hotel developer and Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan. Jon Seidel, reporter with the Chicago Sun-Times, joins host Becky Vevea with the latest.


How To Spend Election Season When You're The Only One On The Ballot

WBEZ talked with four Chicago aldermen who are being handed another term in office. How are they spending their time this election season?


Chicago's Mayoral Candidates Answer 20 Yes Or No Questions

Before you vote, read their answers.

On Background: WBEZ's Politics Podcast

How Chicago’s Ticketing System Can Ruin Someone’s Life

We all hate them. But parking and traffic camera tickets generate millions for the city of Chicago every year. A WBEZ/ProPublica Illinois investigation reveals that system puts a huge burden on the very people who can least afford it. We look at how one ticket can ruin someone’s life, and what mayoral candidates will do to change the discriminatory system.

On Background: WBEZ's Politics Podcast

Chicago Neighborhoods Define The Issues

Many activist groups want the mayoral candidates to take a break from the mudslinging. We hear them describe some of the city's big issues.

On Background: WBEZ's Politics Podcast

Wards To Watch

There are 50 wards in Chicago, each with its own mini-mayor. A handful of races for alderman are especially hot this year. We look at four.


Mayoral Candidate Daley: Create 50 Elected Mini School Boards In Chicago

Bill Daley wants to replace the city’s hyperlocal school councils with larger, neighborhood-based elected boards.

On Background: WBEZ's Politics Podcast

Have It The Chicago Way? Burke Allegedly Shakes Down Burger King Execs

What did the feds say Ed Burke did? And what might it mean for Chicago politics? Our politics team takes a closer look.

On Background: WBEZ's Politics Podcast

The Great Ballot Battle Show

How Chicago ended up with a baker’s dozen of Mayoral candidates (so far).

On Background: WBEZ's Politics Podcast

How Do You Solve A Problem Like Chicago Pensions?

We explain 1) what pensions are, 2) how Chicago’s got so messed up, 3) why solutions are so difficult, and 4) why you should care.


Emanuel’s Pension Plan Draws Ire Of Chicago Mayoral Candidates

Mayoral candidates largely reject constitutional pension change, but support city casino and recreational marijuana.


For Pension Fix, Emanuel Says Borrow, Legalize Weed, Open Chicago Casino

Chicago’s mayor wants to change the state constitution, legalize weed and allow a Chicago casino to help the city’s struggling pensions.


Most Mayoral Candidates Say No To More Chicago School Closings

Amid declining enrollment, WBEZ asked Chicago's 2019 mayoral candidates whether they would support more Chicago public school closings.

On Background: WBEZ's Politics Podcast

How Closing Schools Became A Huge Issue In Chicago Politics

We get the backstory on how a generation of school closings has changed the lives of Chicago's kids and the nature of Chicago politics.


Vacant School Buildings Litter City After Closings

Chicago has closed or shaken up 200 schools since 2002. That has left 38 vacant buildings on the South and West sides, a WBEZ analysis shows.


Preckwinkle, As Chicago Mayor, Would Push For Elected CPS Board

Part of the Cook County Board President’s education platform means she’d push to end more than two decades of mayoral control of CPS.

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