WKAR Radio host El Chayo Cervantes has received the Domingo "Nick" Reyes Latina/o Workers Media Award. The award was announced in August 2015 by the Latina/o Workers Leadership Institute at the University of Michigan at Dearborn, and is intended to stimulate news coverage of issues and concerns related to the working Latino class.
Known to his listeners as "El Chayo," Cervantes was honored for his 45 years of service to his community as a broadcaster. El Chayo is heard on "Ondas en Español" at 8am-10am and 6pm-8pm Saturday and Sundays on AM870 WKAR. The show presents music and information for mid-Michigan's Spanish speaking community.
"I've been into music since I was 10 or 11 years old, so music has always been my love," Cervantes said. "I felt it was something we needed in our community."
Cervantes said his main role was to provide whatever was needed to the Latino community. "You just do what you do with whatever your show is about, whether it is music, commercial, or public service. We all try to entertain and inform the community," he said.
Maria Van Core, president of Greater Lansing Area chapter of Labor Council For Latin American Advancement, nominated Cervantes for the award.
"He's very informative to the Latino community," Van Core said.
Van Core said not only his involvement in the media should be recognized, but his community service, labor and support to people in general is why she nominated Cervantes for the award.
"I thought it was very well deserved for him and I'm happy for him. I think it was long overdue," Van Core said.
David Reynolds, of the Center for Labor and Community Studies University of Michigan/Dearborn, said what stood out to him about Cervantes was all the years he has put into the community.
"It's not just his radio show, it's his dedication to the community and him getting out Latino issues. We were honored to give him the award," Reynolds said.
The Domingo "Nick" Reyes Latina/o Workers Media Award is named for Domingo Nick Reyes, a media practitioner/activist who dedicated his adult life to the fair and dignified representation of Chicanos and Latina/os in the media industry.