Univision hires first Afro-Caribbean anchor for Noticiero Univision

Ilia Calderon (Univision)

When María Elena Salinas announced back in August that she was retiring from her spot as co-anchor of Noticiero Univision, the question everyone asked was who could replace her?

The answer is Ilia Calderón, current co-anchor of Noticiero Univision: Edición Nocturna.

Calderón will join Jorge Ramos weeknights at 6:30 p.m. beginning mid-December. The new appointment makes Calderón  the first Afro-Latina to anchor an evening newscast for a major broadcast network in the United States. Calderón will also serve as co-host of Univision’s primetime newsmagazine, “Aquí y Ahora” (Here and Now), which airs on Sunday nights, alongside Teresa Rodríguez.

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The Emmy award winner herself became the news this summer, when she  scored an interview with Ku Klux Klan leader Chris Barker in his home in North Carolina for a special edition of “Aquí y Ahora.” Barker proceeded to insult Calderón, calling her the n-word during the interview as she peppered him with questions and kept her cool.

Calderón was born in the  Chocó region of Colombia, an impoverished and politically isolated area of the country. She began her career in journalism in 1994 as the anchor of a local newscast in Medellín, later moving to Bogotá. Since relocating to Miami, Florida, she worked for Telemundo then joined Univision in 2007 to co-anchor  Primer Impacto until she took over the anchor seat at Noticiero Univision: Edición Nocturna.

Daniel Coronell, President of Univision News, said in a statement that Calderón is “the ideal person to succeed María Elena Salinas.”