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Esther J. Cepeda
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Esther J Cepeda was Huffington Post blogger from August 2008 until August 2010.

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Born and raised on the North Side of Chicago, Esther J. Cepeda started writing before her scribbles adequately conveyed her musings.

She attended Lane Technical High School then went on to Southern Illinois University, earning a Bachelor's degree in journalism with minors in music and psychology.

After being awarded a full scholarship to the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University, she studied Integrated Marketing Communications there before going into direct marketing and public relations for a variety of Chicago companies.

In 2004 Ms. Cepeda began teaching as a bilingual teacher in low-income grammar and high schools in the suburbs of Chicago while working toward a Master's degree in Special Education from Roosevelt University.

Before joining the Chicago Sun-Times in 2006, then becoming Chicago's first Latino metro columnist, Ms. Cepeda wrote about national and local politics and social issues for Illinois newspapers and magazines across the country.

Selected as a Columbia University 'Next Generation Project' American Assembly Fellow in 2007, Ms. Cepeda was recently named a National Fellow and in June 2008 convened with over one hundred nationally-selected young leaders at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars to strategize on U.S. Global Policy and the Future of International Institutions.

Ms. Cepeda’s columns from the Sun-Times and The Huffington Post can be read on www.estherjcepeda.com, which is indexed and distributed by the Newstex Company, and BlogBurst Media. You can download her content on Amazon's Kindle.

A member of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, The Chicago Headline Club, and The Society of Professional Journalists, Ms. Cepeda is also a musician, singer, dancer and an artist. She currently studies the Korean art of sword fighting, and the piano and guitar.

She lives with her family and two tan Chihuahuas in a suburb of Chicago.

She can be found on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter or at ejc@estherjcepeda.com

Blog Entries by Esther J. Cepeda

Hatred, Hatred, and More Hatred of Latinos Spilling Across the Country

(48) Comments | Posted August 26, 2010 | 2:34 PM

Excerpt from just one of the many letters I received after having included the phrase "the current anti-immigrant atmosphere" in a recent column:

Unfortunately you are mistaken in using the phrase 'anti-immigration atmosphere'. Many American citizens with brown, black, white, or even yellow skin are angry with ILLEGAL immigrants and...
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Closing the Digital Divide One Government App at a Time

(1) Comments | Posted August 19, 2010 | 2:57 PM

Welcome to the brave new world of social (media) government -- a world where you can use mobile phone apps to get information from Uncle Sam so you don't actually have to talk to him.

On July 2, the White House relaunched its usa.gov website and...

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DHS' FYI on Illinois' Illegal Aliens

(17) Comments | Posted February 11, 2010 | 9:51 AM

The Department of Homeland security provided a keyhole of hopeful light for the reform crowd on Tuesday. They published "Estimates of the Unauthorized Immigrant Population Residing in the United States: January 2009" which was written by Michael Hoefer, Nancy Rytina, and Bryan C. Baker.

The report provides estimates of...

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I Adopted Great Recession Orphaned Chihuahuas

(3) Comments | Posted February 4, 2010 | 9:44 AM

On Sunday I put out this provocative message to all the pals who keep up with me on-line:

twitpic.com/10sdk5 - (picture) The adoption process went through on Friday and I picked up my new 5 & 7 year old boy/girl today.
Of course it was a tongue-in-cheek...
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A Message to Those Hating on Haiti: Consider Yourself Hugged

(21) Comments | Posted January 27, 2010 | 10:33 AM

Our constitutionally protected freedom of speech is a beautiful thing. "The freedom to speak without censorship and/or limitation," as Wikipedia so elegantly puts it, is

the synonymous term freedom of expression, sometimes used to indicate not only freedom of verbal speech but any act of seeking, receiving and imparting information...
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Farewell to a Reporter Who Wasn't Afraid to Roll His Rs

(1) Comments | Posted January 18, 2010 | 2:14 PM

I'm sad to say I never had the unique pleasure of meeting the celebrated journalist Carlos Hernandez Gomez.

This is how his obituary in the Chicago Sun-Times described him:

Carlos Hernandez Gomez, political reporter for CLTV, stood out among Chicago reporters not only because of his old-school...
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Three Cheers for Shop Class

(3) Comments | Posted January 7, 2010 | 11:44 AM

Auto shop, wood shop, metal shop - all horrors of a certain segment of the high school population. Let's face it, shop class never got much respect.

So, when I read Rosalind Rossi's story "Shop Class shake-up" in Tuesday's Chicago Sun-Times I was near giddy. In it, Rossi...

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One Chicago Cellist Plus One Dalai Lama Equals a World of Compassion

(2) Comments | Posted December 9, 2009 | 8:48 PM

Picture an idealistic Northwestern University cello student, circa 1993, playing a tune for a crowd of colorfully-robed monks from all over the world and you'll have visualized Michael Fitzpatrick.

Since his years in Chicago, Michael -- golden-curly-haired, tall, and possessed of a chill-axed surfer dude vibe -- has been featured...

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Terror Fears Scarier Than Guantanamo Bay Suspects in the Heartland

(2) Comments | Posted November 19, 2009 | 3:14 PM

What's far scarier than the thought of Guantanamo Bay terrorism suspects cooling their heels behind maximum security bars in Thomson, Illinois?

Fear-mongered people -- already stretched to the limits due to the ravages the economy has inflicted -- acting out against anyone who looks like a foreigner because the TV...

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Economic Tier Scheme for CPS Selective Enrollment Schools: Go Back to the Drawing Board

(11) Comments | Posted November 12, 2009 | 9:37 AM

Looking back on it, I just don't know how I made it in.

Growing up at Addison and Lincoln there was no question where I wanted to go to high school: the gorgeous, ivy-covered walls of Albert G. Lane Technical High School up the street at Addison and Western.

The...

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Women and Minorities Bit Players, But Gaining in Selling to America's Biggest Customer -- the Federal Government

(1) Comments | Posted November 6, 2009 | 9:46 AM

It's been about a year since I last wrote about women's economic advancement and diversity initiatives in the context of the Great Recession.

Things were starting to get rough back then and they're still not great. Despite some nice indicators of national economic health, for the most part,...

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Halloween Pet Pimp Costumes: Not a Good Gauge of the Economy's Strength

(1) Comments | Posted October 29, 2009 | 10:54 AM

You're thinking things are going to the dogs?

Nah, things went to the dogs well before the Great Recession, and -- as if to prove that Americans have no capacity to learn from their own hubris -- we're already on our way back.

The first sign I saw was the...

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College From Pennsylvania to Chicago's South Side to the Future, With Fish

(0) Comments | Posted October 22, 2009 | 10:28 AM

Let's celebrate! And let's celebrate fish! And fishing!

Yes, you heard me right.

Between the shootings that happen steps from school boundaries and the domestic violence that splatters on the very kids who are supposed to grow up and lead us to a brighter, better tomorrow, it seems like...

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Savoring the End of the World As We Know It!

(1) Comments | Posted October 15, 2009 | 11:28 AM

I went to see the movie Zombieland on Saturday, right in the middle of what seemed like a ferociously cold day, what it being early October and us on the verge of perishing from this global warming and all.

You might imagine that a post-zombie-apocalypse-survival movie might bring a girl...

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Rio in 2016: A Great Consolation Prize for U.S. Hispanics With South American Ties

(17) Comments | Posted October 2, 2009 | 3:09 PM

Yes, it was a shock when Chicago was so easily, so cavalierly knocked out of the bid. After all the years put into making a Chicago 2016 Olympics a reality, the dream faded away in a matter of moments.

But then later, when the final winner was announced tears...

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No Good Times for Big Business -- They're Mad as Hell and Not Gonna Take It Anymore

(56) Comments | Posted October 1, 2009 | 12:19 PM

Regular Joe and Jo-ettes don't spend enough time thinking about how federal policy shapes their lives on a day-to-day basis. Even in good times, most people are just too busy trying to keep their heads above water and makin' a wave when they can -- and these times are far...

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Chicago Boxer David Diaz: Facing His Future in the Ring Saturday

(1) Comments | Posted September 24, 2009 | 10:03 AM

There's really only one good reason to watch a boxing match: ass-kicking.

Face it: you can talk about sportsmanship, you can talk about guts, grit and determination, you can talk about technique. But when it all comes down to it, there are two men in a ring and one of...

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Will He or Won't He? Obama the Key to Chicago's Olympic Dream

(17) Comments | Posted September 17, 2009 | 11:22 AM

There really shouldn't be much suspense here - the man said it plain-as-day during Wednesday's White House rah-rah for Chicago's 2016 Olympic bid.

"I would make the case in Copenhagen personally, if I weren't so firmly committed to making -- making real the promise of quality, affordable health care...

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Who's a Liar? In Search of the Million Dollar Illegal Immigrant to End All Health Care Reform

(110) Comments | Posted September 9, 2009 | 11:31 PM

The health care debate has been hijacked by angry people who have health insurance, don't want their applecart upset, and thusly have resorted to spreading out-and-out lies about the current attempt at reform.

Some so angry, they'll catcall the president during a nationally-televised address to congress. Thanks for being so...

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Add This Health Care Solution to the Debate: Mexican and Latin American Folk Remedies for the Ultimate Do-It-Yourselfer

(2) Comments | Posted September 1, 2009 | 8:07 PM

I am not a curandera -- healing woman -- nor do I play one on TV.

Also, I am not an abuelita -- granny -- old world to me means fax machines.

But seeing how the health care debate the country is having with itself has devolved into shouting...

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