Esther Yoon-Ji Kang | WBEZ
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Esther Yoon-Ji Kang

Esther Yoon-Ji Kang

Reporter

Esther Yoon-Ji Kang is a reporter on the Race, Class and Communities desk. Previously, she was the communications manager for the University of Chicago Institute of Politics (IOP). Before her work with the IOP, Esther was an editor at Chicago magazine, where she reported, wrote, edited, photographed, designed and produced award-winning stories for the website and print magazine. Prior to Chicago magazine, she worked as a breaking news producer for chicagotribune.com, latimes.com and other Tribune Company news sites. Aside from her work on the Web, Esther has covered the Chicago Public Schools and juvenile court beats and has written for various publications. She holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Northwestern University and has taught undergraduate and graduate courses in the journalism school.

Originally from South Korea (by way of Paraguay and the D.C. area), she lives on the South Side with her husband and daughter.  

Recent Stories

WBEZ News

Illinois Hosts Summit To Ensure Children Get Counted In The Census

Officials said undercounting children in the census could result in the loss of crucial resources that could help them, such as food stamps.

WBEZ News

Lawmakers Stress Ways To Boost Manufacturing In The Chicago Region

Poor reading and math skills keep some out of manufacturing. “Our public education systems are failing,” said Congressman Danny Davis.

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New Group Aims To Provide Economic Boost For Chicago’s South Suburbs

The Southland Development Authority will provide personnel, expertise and financing to help towns attract investors and businesses.

WBEZ News

Some South Side Residents Don't Want A Casino In Their Neighborhoods

“I see people making tons of money off people who can’t afford to use that type of recreation,” said Bronzeville resident Ronald Muhammad.

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Chinatown Residents Share Concerns About The 78 Megadevelopment

“We have to think of … how to preserve the culture here,” said Ben Lau, executive director of the Chinese American Museum of Chicago.

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Chinatown Residents Voice Their Concerns About A Chicago Casino

Residents suggested that the city provide more free activities and that the state make gambling addiction treatment more accessible.

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Manufacturing Needs Workers. Chicago Has Plenty. Where's The Disconnect?

Cars, classes, advertising —here's how experts say manufacturers can connect thousands of open jobs to people in high unemployment areas.

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Illinois Awards $20 Million in Census Outreach Grants

The funds will be used by organizations to reach “hard to count” populations

WBEZ News

Chicago Earmarks $2.7 Million For Census Outreach

“Dismal” is how Mayor Lori Lightfoot described Chicago’s 66% census participation rate in 2010. She said 75% will be the goal for 2020.

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Chicago Owns America’s Widest Racial Gap In Economic Mobility

“Chicago is … quite good for white men, near the top among big cities, yet it’s near the bottom for black men,” said economist Raj Chetty.

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Some Concerned By Lack Of Census Outreach Grant Applications In Illinois

Most applications came from three Chicago-area regions, but just one or two applications came from each of the state’s other nine regions.

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Korean American Groups Launch Census Outreach Effort

“Hard-to-count” populations in the Korean community include North Korean refugees, adoptees, foreign students and seniors.

WBEZ News

After Long Immigration Fight, A Family Says Goodbye To Its Matriarch

After losing her fight to gain legal status, Julie Bartolome was deported on Aug. 22. This is how that day unfolded.

WBEZ News

Federal Lawmakers From Illinois Call For More Resources For 2020 Census

Democratic lawmakers from Illinois on Monday accused the Trump administration of deliberately trying to undermine next year’s census.

WBEZ News

Mount Prospect Woman Deported After 20-Year Quest For U.S. Citizenship

Immigration enforcement officials put Julita Bartolome on a flight to Manila Thursday after denying multiple requests for a stay of removal.

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Process To Spend $20 Million For Census Outreach In Illinois Raises Concerns

A coalition of 50 groups interested in performing census outreach in Illinois say the state’s process to fund that work is confusing.

WBEZ News

Chicago-Area Groups Seek Accurate Census Count Of Chinese Communities

A coalition of Chinese groups have formed a “complete count” committee to plan outreach efforts in preparation for next year’s census.

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Report: Work Visas Change Could Hurt Immigrant Families

A Chicago-based South Asian think tank says denying the spouses of highly skilled immigrants from working would hurt immigrant families.

WBEZ News

After Fire, Assata’s Daughters Seeks New Headquarters

After the city demolished its fire-damaged headquarters this month, Assata’s Daughters hopes to find another home in Washington Park.

WBEZ News

Illinois Faces Tight Timeline To Prepare For Census 2020

Lawmakers set aside $29 million to prepare for next year. Local groups say they need the money as soon as possible to ensure a robust count.

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