LaToya Dennis

News Reporter

LaToya Dennis joined WUWM in October 2006 as a reporter / producer. LaToya began her career in public radio as a part-time reporter for WKAR AM/FM in East Lansing, Michigan. She worked as general assignment reporter for WKAR for one and a half years while working toward a master's degree in Journalism from Michigan State University. While at WKAR, she covered General Motors plant closings, city and state government, and education among other critical subjects.

Before coming to public radio, LaToya interned at the CBS affiliate in Lansing, Michigan. She also took part in NPR's 2005 Next Generation Radio Project in Kansas City, Missouri as well as NPR's summer 2006 Next Generation Radio Project in Indianapolis, Indiana.

LaToya holds both a Bachelor's degree and a Masters degree in journalism from Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan. Dennis is a member of the National Association of Black Journalists.

Ways to Connect

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Vehicles sold across the world are becoming more eco-friendly. Technology that turns off your engine at stop lights was first introduced in Europe about a decade ago. Not only does it cut down on emissions, it saves gas and money. Now, start-stop technology is gaining popularity in the states.

So back when I was learning to drive, and no, I’m not going to tell you just how long ago that was, my grandmother always told me that a car uses more gas being turned off and back on, then by just allowing it to run…

The family of Dontre Hamilton on Wednesday filed a federal civil rights lawsuit over his death. A Milwaukee police officer shot Hamilton 14 times, killing him in Red Arrow Park downtown in 2014. The Hamilton family says that while the suit will not bring back their beloved brother and son, it could cast light on harmful police practices.

It’s been one year since Governor Walker enacted new rules for thousands of FoodShare recipients. Since last April, all able-bodied adults without dependents are required to put in at least 80 hours of work or training a month in order to receive food benefits. The Walker administration is calling the first year a success, while others say thousands of people are going hungry.

Racine County

Wisconsin’s John Doe probe into allegations of abuse and sexual misconduct at the state prison for boys and girls has ended. The reason – Governor Walker signed a bill into law last year that limits John Does. They must end within six months, unless state prosecutors successfully request an extension; they did not. So only the federal investigation will continue at Lincoln Hills School for Boys and Copper Lake School for girls.

Michelle Maternowski

Living with a family member addicted to drugs can devastate loved ones. They can struggle to set boundaries and be overwhelmed by anger, resentment and fear. All the while, more and more families are dealing with the problem. The number of people in Milwaukee County alone dying of drug overdoses is in the hundreds and continues to increase.

LaToya Dennis

An economic downturn is underway, and most people probably have no idea. It’s not like the Great Recession when the entire country could notice the impact, yet today’s decline is turning some people’s lives upside down. Players in the recycling industry are struggling including in Milwaukee.

Bruce Adams hits the road every morning between 3 and 3:30 to scavenge for what most people would consider junk, but for Adams, it’s money.


On Friday, Dane County Circuit Court Judge William Foust agreed with the Wisconsin AFL-CIO, Machinists Local 1061 and United Steelworkers District 2. These unions sued the state after Gov. Walker signed right-to-work into law about a year ago.

Wisconsin's right-to-work law lets workers decide whether or not to pay union dues. The unions insist it unconstitutionally seizes union property by requiring unions to extend benefits to workers who don't pay dues. 

LaToya Dennis

State Sen. Chris Larson is urging his supporters to give incumbent Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele another chance after he defeated Larson on Tuesday.

The crowd had thinned out by the time Larson arrived at around 9:45 pm, but there still enough supporters in the room to give him a warm welcome. While upbeat, Larson acknowledged that this was not the result he wanted. Still he vowed to keep fighting.

“So big money may have won the battle, but they haven’t won the war,” Larson says.

LaToya Dennis

GOP frontrunner Donald Trump is continuing to make his case in Wisconsin. On Sunday night, he spoke with hundreds of supporters at Nathan Hale High School in West Allis.

For more than an hour, he spoke about golf, foreign relations, making people proud and making America great again. He says if he’s elected president, the U.S. will win again.

LaToya Dennis

Two of the three Republicans hoping to become the next president made a campaign stop in Milwaukee on Friday night. Ohio Governor John Kasich and Texas Senator Ted Cruz made their case as to why they should be the GOP nominee.

It was standing room only with more than 750 people in attendance at Serb Hall for the Milwaukee County Republican Presidential dinner. Kasich took the stage first; followed by former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, who is on the campaign trail for Donald Trump; and then Ted Cruz.

Michelle Maternowski

The three Republican candidates still in the running for the presidential nomination campaigned in Milwaukee on Tuesday. And each took a turn answering audience questions at the town hall style meeting CNN hosted at the Riverside Theater downtown.  As ticket holders filed into the venue, protesters made their voices heard.

S Bence

On Tuesday, Secretary Hillary Clinton met with Milwaukee residents all too familiar with the tragedy of gun violence.

The town hall meeting took place at Tabernacle Community Baptist Church, a congregation made up largely of African Americans - a demographic some say Clinton must win in order to become the next president.

The church is located in 53206, an area plagued by poverty and crime and struggling to help its high rate of black men who have served time in prison.

Scott Olson/Getty Images

There are less than two weeks left until Wisconsin’s presidential primary election, and now hopefuls or their surrogates are beginning to flock to the state. On Wednesday, Ohio Gov. John Kasich hosted a town hall meeting at the Crown Plaza hotel in Wauwatosa.

Gov. Kasich repeatedly hammered home this message.

“I’m the only one who can beat Hillary,” Kasich said.

Lincoln Hills

Last week, the Wisconsin Senate confirmed Jon Litscher as the new secretary of the Department of Corrections. He’s taking over while investigations continue into reports of abuse and neglect at the Lincoln Hills School for Boys and Copper Lake School for Girls. The previous secretary, Ed Wall, resigned in February.  When the allegations hit the media we spoke with the mother of inmate assigned to Lincoln Hills. We caught back up with her to find out what, if anything, has changed at the juvenile facilities. The mother’s name has been changed to protect her minor son. 

Thursday’s Milwaukee County Board meeting marked the last time members would meet as full-time supervisors. The job becomes part time, after the April 5th election. And for some not running again, Thursday’s meeting was their last.

The agenda was packed with important issues. One was the transfer of the O’Donnell Parking Garage to the Milwaukee Art Museum. The board voted to transfer ownership of several lakefront buildings, due to the cost of maintaining them.