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.

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A Waukesha man has filed a petition with the U.S. Supreme Court  in hopes of having his student loans written off in bankruptcy court. The case calls into question the different standards used across the country.

Republican legislators in Wisconsin have proposed changes in the state's campaign finance laws. Plans include raising the amount of money individuals could give candidates, doing away with the requirement that donors disclose where they work and allowing campaigns to work directly with third party funders.

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Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan is now the third most powerful man in Washington politics after a vote by House of Representative members on Thursday. 

Longtime Wisconsin lawmakers, Democrat David Obey and Republican Tom Petri, say Ryan faces a tough road ahead. Milwaukee was just one stop on Obey and Petri’s Civic Participation Series tour, where they touch on how to best fix Washington.

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While 28 states across the country saw the gap between their black and white student graduation rates narrow, Wisconsin's grew.

According to preliminary date released by the U.S. Department of Education, the gap between the number of African American students who graduate from high school in four years compared to their white peers is the worst in the country.

Susan Bence

Gov. Walker on Thursday threw his support behind Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan to succeed John Boehner as Speaker of the House. Walker says Ryan is the best person for the job.

“He’s someone who has incredible respect not only within his conference, but he has respect across the aisle (be)cause he’s a doer. He gets things done,” Walker says.

LaToya Dennis

Nearly one year ago, five-year-old Laylah Peterson was shot dead while sitting on her grandfather’s lap in his home on Milwaukee’s north side. On Tuesday, police announced three arrests. 

Investigators say the three men were seeking revenge because one of their brothers was killed. But they fired bullets into the wrong home. Emotions ran high during the press conference announcing the arrests.

Michelle Maternowski

Local roads across Wisconsin are in need of repair. Democratic state Sen. Jennifer Shilling recently called on GOP lawmakers to help fix the problem.

“The potholes on the streets that I drive on every week keep getting worse, and my city council says we don’t have any resources from the state to fix these roads for the next 18 years,” Shilling says.

City of Milwaukee leaders have found a temporary way to improve roads, though those leaders insist that ultimately, the state and federal governments will have to kick in more money.

Gov. Scott Walker will soon appoint a judge to serve out the remainder of Justice Patrick Crook’s term on the Wisconsin Supreme Court. Crooks died unexpectedly last month, just days after announcing he would not seek re-election in 2016. His death leaves Gov. Walker with the decision of whether to appoint one of the candidates to the court.

While it doesn’t happen often in Wisconsin, a governor appointing a state Supreme Court Justice isn’t unheard of. For instance, Marquette Law Professor Janine Geske was first seated on the court by former Gov. Tommy Thompson.

LaToya Dennis

Twenty-four hours a day, trucks crisscross the country moving many of the products we use. But concern is on the rise because not enough people are interested in driving those trucks. Efforts are underway in Wisconsin to draw more people to the industry. 

Part of the challenge is to improve its image.

When you think about truck drivers, what image comes to mind? Maybe someone who’s out of shape, chain smokes and every other word is an expletive. Greg Persinger says that stereotype still rings true sometimes.

Courtesy of the Milwaukee Bucks

The Milwaukee Common Council on Tuesday approved spending $47 million to help the Bucks build a new downtown arena and entertainment center. 

The city and team had worked out differences on a few issues that had the potential to derail the project.

Courtesy of the Milwaukee Bucks

Several members of the Milwaukee Common Council on Tuesday engaged in a heated debate over proposed amendments to an arena financing deal. The project is expected to cost around $500 million, with the city’s projected share at $47 million. City leaders say they want to make sure Milwaukee is getting the best deal for its money.

Gokhan Sahin/Getty Images

Doctor Adel Korkor was born and raised in Syria but came to the U.S. several decades ago to continue his medical training. He makes Milwaukee his home. Korkor says he often tries to tune out the news about Syria's civil war - the thousands it's killing, the many it has turned into refugees fleeing toward Europe and perhaps its narrowing door, but he can’t stop thinking about his homeland.

FRANK JUAREZ / FLICKR

Money is often a barrier to people thinking about attending college, so the Milwaukee Area Technical College has unveiled a plan to help qualifying low-income students pay their way. It's called the MATC Promise. Starting in fall of 2016, it will offer free tuition for four consecutive semesters. Similar programs exist across the country with the ultimate goal of reducing poverty.

Janesville Police Department

Police forces across the country are turning to body cameras as a way of easing tension between officers and community members. The pace of adopting the technology has accelerated in recent times, following the deaths of several African American men in police custody. 

For instance, in Ferguson Missouri, it was Michael Brown; in Milwaukee, Dontre Hamilton. Late Thursday, the Milwaukee Police Department presented its plan for using cameras to the Fire and Police Commission. There are ethical issues to consider. 

Gov. Scott Walker
Alex Wong/Getty Images

Gov. Walker has been getting a lot of attention lately, but it’s not the kind the presidential hopeful wants. 

In recent weeks, he’s walked back comments on immigration, offended Muslims and criticized career politicians insisting he is not one of them. The continuous negative coverage is not something Walker was used to in Wisconsin.

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