IL Latino News & CAN TV Expand Partnership

CHICAGO—Illinois Latino News, an affiliate of the Latino News Network (LNN), announces the expansion of its partnership with CAN TV, Chicago’s premiere hub for community access news.

Building upon their existing collaboration that began in May 2023, IL Latino News and CAN TV are set to introduce two new monthly programs this year aimed at fostering dialogue, promoting civic engagement, and amplifying diverse voices across the city of Chicago and beyond: “Sazón de Illinois” and “Presente!”. 

LNN Publisher and host of the CAN TV show “3 Questions With…” Hugo Balta will serve as host and executive producer for “Sazón de Illinois,” a 30-minute TV program that will showcase the state’s vibrant Latin American food scene – from authentic taquerias to family-owned panaderias. Each month, Balta will visit a different neighborhood to explore establishments and delve into the personal stories of Latinx business owners/employees and their unique offerings. The show will also spotlight the contributions of these businesses to the local economy and the city’s rich cultural tapestry.

Nine of the 28 guests on “3 Questions With…” (2023-2024)

Balta will also serve as the executive producer for 3QW’s successor, Presente!, a public affairs program that elevates the voices and visibility of matters most important to the Hispanic-Latino community by speaking with community and industry thought leaders on the social determinants of health and democracy. 

“I’m grateful and excited for the opportunity to expand a partnership that is focused on amplifying the experiences, challenges, and triumphs of communities making a difference and shaping the future of our city,” said Balta.

Samantha Lampkin and Hugo Balta on the set of Chicago Politics

In an effort to expand its focus on hyperlocal news and public affairs, CAN TV also tapped Balta to host “Chicago Politics.” Premiering May 19, “Chicago Politics” will serve as the network’s anchor program and dive into the city’s unique political landscape.

“The groundbreaking new program will change the public’s view of political news in Chicago. We will bring a solutions journalism approach to coverage, showcasing the responses to the challenges our city faces and investigating the evidence, insights, and limitations of why those responses are working or not,” asserted Balta.

Emmy award winning journalist, Samantha Lampkin is Chicago Politics’ Lead Correspondent. Lampkin will be visiting neighborhoods throughout the City to learn firsthand what the people need from their elected officials.

“This expanded partnership with Latino News Network represents a significant step in furthering our mission to supercharge community-driven journalism,” said Darrious Hilmon, Executive Director of CAN TV. “Together, we unlock a unique opportunity to magnify the rich stories and perspectives that weave Chicago’s cultural fabric.”

Cover Photo: Hugo Balta, Publisher of Illinois Latino News, addresses the audience at CAN-TV’s fortieth-anniversary gala. (November 2023)


ILLN’s mission is to provide greater visibility and voice to the Hispanic-Latino community, amplify the work of others in doing the same, mentor and provide young journalists with real work experiences, and apply the principles of solutions journalism in producing stories focused on the social determinants of health, and democracy.


For four decades, CAN TV has unlocked the voices of Chicagoans with community access news, hyperlocal stories and journalistic education and resources. Through original and public programming, alongside educational opportunities that build media literacy, skill and independence, CAN TV takes community access to the next level, supporting local Chicagoans to hear and tell the stories that matter most. CAN TV’s programming can be viewed on its five local cable channels (CAN TV 19, 21, 27, 36, and 42) or on streaming platforms including Roku, Fire TV Stick and iOS and Android devices. During 2023, more than 34 million viewers watched CAN TV programs. For more information on the organization and upcoming initiatives, events and programming specials, visit

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