Waukegan, Illinois (November 7, 2022) – Nominated by the Waukegan Park District, Oscar Zepeda, the Editor-in-Chief of Puro Futbol News, was honored by the Illinois Association of Park Districts with the Illinois Parks’ Top Journalist Award. The award recognizes a print, radio, and television medium or individual reporter/journalist that has provided responsible and comprehensive coverage of Illinois park districts, forest preserves, conservation, recreation, and special recreation agencies at the statewide and/or local level.
Oscar has been the Editor-in-Chief for Puro Futbol News, a local bilingual newspaper, since 2004, covering news in the Waukegan area. In his weekly reporting, Oscar uses his platform to highlight the importance of park districts in the Latinx community. Oscar has been an important part of the Waukegan Park District’s efforts to connect with the community through traditional newspapers.
Oscar and the Waukegan Park District partnered to increase participation from Latinx-owned businesses in the American Independence Parade. Oscar donated weekly quarter-page ads in Puro Futbol News, which led to over fifteen new Latinx-owned businesses participating in the parade. Through the years, Oscar has also donated full-page ads to promote free special events.
Janet E. Kilkelly, President of the Waukegan Park District Board of Commissioners, stated, “Oscar Zepeda is a valuable partner of the Waukegan Park District. From special events to plant giveaways, his bilingual reporting in Puro Futbol News has been an important part of our efforts to effectively communicate with the Latinx community.”
Jay Lerner, Executive Director of the Waukegan Park District, noted, “The creation and maintenance of a positive relationship between the Waukegan Park District and Oscar Zepeda has helped improve awareness of park events and news. Oscar’s reporting in Puro Futbol News demonstrates the importance of the Waukegan Park District as an integral part of the community.”
Oscar Zepeda, stated, “Thank you for giving me the opportunity to contribute my grain of sand by informing our Hispanic community about your beautiful programs and the easy access you provide to reach them. I strongly believe that Puro Futbol News will continue to collaborate and strengthen our working ties with the Waukegan Park District for the good of the community at large.”