Women in media to share insights, challenges at Harper panel discussion

In keeping with the theme of Women's History Month, I will be part of a panel of women speakers sharing insights on the opportunities and challenges facing women in media leadership on April 8 at Harper College in Palatine.

Join the Women at the Table Breakfast and discussion, from 8 to 10 a.m. in the Wojcik Conference Center on campus, 1200 W. Algonquin Road. Panelists include yours truly speaking in my capacity as assistant city editor and diversity editor for the Daily Herald; Jeanne Sparrow, Emmy-winning television and radio personality on V103 Chicago; and Lisa Stamos, publisher of Quintessential Media Group. For speaker bios, visit

The discussion will be moderated by Kim Pohl, Harper director of communications.

The event is hosted by the HOPE Giving Circle, which brings together women professionals of diverse backgrounds to provide scholarship support, mentoring, professional development and leadership opportunities for women.

Register by April 1 at Guests may submit questions for panelists when registering. For more information, contact (847) 925-6701 or email shynes@harperco​

Stop hate

Chicago-area Asian communities will come together Wednesday to mark the anniversary of the Atlanta-area spa shootings.

Eight people were killed — six of them Asian women — and one person was wounded in the March 16, 2021, shooting spree at two spas and a massage parlor in the Atlanta metro area.

The Asian American Caucus will host a statewide virtual conversation on stopping AAPI hate with U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth from 7 to 8 p.m. Wednesday.

Register at

The event is co-hosted by Apna Ghar, Asian American Chamber of Commerce of Illinois, Chinese American Women in Action, Coalition for a Better Chinese American Community, Hanul Family Alliance, Japanese American Citizens League Chicago Chapter, KAN-WIN, South Asian American Policy & Research Institute, and The Asian American Foundation.

Black agri-preneurs

The Just Food Initiative of the Fox Valley is seeking 12 young men and women of Black heritage to participate in the Young Black Agri-preneurs program, now in its second year.

Youth in fifth through ninth grades are invited to Just Food's two-part program, which begins in April.

Participants take five classes in April and May to learn about soil, seeds, plants, animals, healthy food, and food industry workers. The program involves hands-on learning. Classes are held in Aurora.

Children who have completed the classes are eligible to take part in a summerlong project growing a small container garden of vegetables for their families. Each child receives a personal adult mentor. The garden will be at participants' homes. Just Food has room for six gardeners.

Partial and full scholarships are available for families who want to participate but cannot afford the $45 fee for the spring class and $75 cost for summer gardening. For more information, contact Cindy Sansale at (630) 383-1357 and

Bilingual education

The Illinois State Board of Education will award $4 million in grants, funded with federal pandemic relief dollars, to support the bilingual educator pipeline.

The grant will cover the cost of tuition for current educators to earn full licensure to teach English Learners.

In Illinois schools, bilingual education teachers are in high demand, second only to the demand for special education teachers. In October 2021, Illinois school districts reported 98 vacancies for bilingual education classroom teachers. Data from the 2020-21 school year show the pandemic disproportionately affected the academic and social-emotional well-being of the state's English Learners, who likely needed more support to engage in learning virtually.

The number of English Learners meeting standards in English language arts or math in 2021 dropped by 50% compared to 2019.

For resources on bilingual/ESL education and licensure, visit

Muslim action

The Council of Islamic Organizations of Greater Chicago will host a virtual Illinois Muslim Action Day from 5 to 7 p.m. March 23.

Democratic U.S. Reps. Jan Schakowsky of Evanston and Ilhan Omar of Minnesota will lead a keynote panel discussion on combating intolerance in all its forms, whether racial, religious or ethnic. They also will talk about the House passage of the Combating International Islamaphobia Act, sponsored by Omar.

The webinar includes workshops on key topics such as halal lunches, bullying, mental health and anti-Muslim bigotry. It will serve as a platform for identifying ways to drive these policies at the state level.

For details, visit

Census errors

Recently released analysis about the quality of the 2020 Census counts revealed various demographic groups were over-counted or undercounted, in line with historical trends.

Results show the 2020 Census undercounted populations of Blacks, American Indians or Alaska Natives living on a reservation, Hispanics, and people who reported being of some other race. On the other hand, non-Hispanic white and Asian populations were over-counted. Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander populations were neither over-counted nor undercounted, according to the findings.

Among age groups, the 2020 Census undercounted children 0 to 17 years old, particularly young children 0 to 4 years old. Young children persistently are undercounted in the decennial census, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

• Share stories, news and happenings from the suburban mosaic at

Lisa Stamos
The Asian American Caucus will host a statewide virtual conversation from 7 to 8 p.m. Wednesday with U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth on stopping Asian American and Pacific Islander hate. Associated Press
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