Michael Puente | WBEZ
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Michael Puente

Michael Puente

Northwest Indiana Reporter

Michael covers news and issues primarily in Northwest Indiana, Chicago’s Southeast side and South Suburbs.

The first 13 years of Michael’s journalism career was in print. He’s worked for the Post-Tribune of Northwest Indiana (part of the Sun-Times Media Group) and the Daily Herald based in Arlington Heights, Ill. Michael got his start in radio as co-host of the Latin Lingo Show on WJOB AM 1230 in Hammond. He joined WBEZ in 2006.

The NWI Studio in Crown Point is WBEZ’s only studio outside the City of Chicago. He earned a B.A. in Communications from Calumet College of St. Joseph in Hammond, Indiana where he now teaches as an adjunct professor.

Michael’s stories on WBEZ have earned more than three dozen awards including from the Indiana and Illinois Associated Press broadcasters associations, Indiana Society of Professional Journalists, the Chicago Headline Club, and National Headliner Awards. Michael is a member of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists and a former board member of the Latino Council on the Media of Chicago.

Michael is an avid White Sox, Bulls, Blackhawks and Bears fan. He also acts on occasion in community theater in Northwest Indiana.

Recent Stories

WBEZ News

Village, Protesters At Odds Over Plan For ICE Center

Dwight, Ill., approved a measure that could bring Illinois it’s first privately operated detention facility to house undocumented men.

WBEZ News

Aurora Shooting Victims Include An Intern There For His First Day

Five people were killed while at work Friday afternoon before police fatally shot the 45-year-old gunman in the suburb west of Chicago.

WBEZ News

Northbound Lake Shore Drive Near Chicago River Reopens

Transportation officials say northbound Lake Shore Drive near the Chicago River has reopened after being shut down due to beam cracks.

WBEZ News

Volunteers Rally To Help The Cold And Homeless In East Chicago

When people saw an urgent need during this week’s subzero cold, they created a homeless shelter inside a church.

WBEZ News

O’Hare Global Terminal Project Reveals 5 Architecture Finalists

The designs pitches a sleek, futuristic look for the $8.5 billion terminal, which could be one of the largest in the nation.

WBEZ News

Chicago Hospital Performs Historic Triple Organ Transplants

University of Chicago Medicine says its doctors performed the first ever back-to-back triple organ transplants on two patients last month.

WBEZ News

Home Sellers In Historic Town Say Oil Giant BP Is Lowballing Them

Residents in Northwest Indiana are willing to sell their homes to BP, but they accuse the oil giant of shortchanging them.

WBEZ News

Transgender Chicago Man One Step Closer To Joining Air Force

Nick Bade, a transgender man from Chicago, is heading to basic training as part of the Air Force’s delayed entry program.

WBEZ News

No Messing Around — Mascot Hall Of Fame Is Real!

A new building in Whiting, Indiana honors the legends and antics of the sports mascot world.

WBEZ News

Emanuel Calls For Increase To Gas Tax

At 19 cents per gallon, Illinois hasn’t increased its motor fuel tax since 1990.

WBEZ News

Jingle Really, Really Big Bells

Rockefeller Memorial Chapel rings in the holidays with a concert played on its huge carillon.

WBEZ News

Celebrating The Life Of Dr. Tamara O’Neal

More than 600 attended Friday’s funeral for Dr. Tamara O’Neal, a Mercy Hospital doctor who was a native of Northwest Indiana.

WBEZ News

Slain Doctor, Pharmacist Lived To Help Others

Dr. Tamara O’Neal and pharmacist Dayna Less are being remembered as dedicated women who had a passion for caring for people.

WBEZ News

Mike Braun Wins Indiana Senate Race

Republican Mike Braun beat incumbent Sen. Joe Donnelly on Tuesday night in the hotly contested Indiana Senate race.

WBEZ News

Indiana Attorney General Won't Face Criminal Charges For Alleged Groping

Attorney General Curtis Hill won't face criminal charges in the alleged groping of four women at a party.

WBEZ News

Protesters Unable To Shut Down Kennedy Expressway Near O'Hare

Demonstrators gathered near Interstate 90 near O’Hare Monday. State police arrested some protesters and no one made it onto the expressway.

WBEZ News

Diocese In Gary Releases Names Of 10 Abusive Priests

The Roman Catholic priest abuse scandal that has rocked the church continues in Northwest Indiana.

WBEZ News

Indiana’s Attorney General Under Pressure To Resign

One of the women accusing Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill of groping says she’s giving a voice to the women who may be afraid to speak.

WBEZ News

New Tragedy For Gary’s Former Mayor

Former Gary Mayor Scott King lost a nephew to gun violence. Now, that nephew’s son could face life in prison.

WBEZ News

NW Indiana Cop Has A History Of Confrontations At Bar

An East Chicago officer who was shot Saturday outside a bar was involved in another incident with a gun at the same bar in September.

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