Maudlyne Ihejirika is a veteran journalist with over 25 years experience in journalism, public relations, and government — 21 of those with the Chicago Sun-Times. She holds a Master’s degree in Journalism from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, and a Bachelor’s in Journalism and Creative Writing from the University of Iowa.
The Urban Affairs Reporter/Assistant City Editor was hired in 1987, covering major beats from crime, poverty and housing to education, politics and philanthropy. She was Weekend City Editor when hired in 1997 by then-Illinois Gov. Jim Edgar’s administration as press secretary for the Dept. of Children and Family Services.
She left state government in 1999 to launch the Ihejirika Media & Communications Group, managing media operations for politicians at the Congressional, State and City Council level, as well as for local nonprofits. Among her firm’s accomplishments were management of the successful re-election bid of U.S. Cong. Bobby Rush in the heated 2000 race against a then-fledgling politician named Barack Obama.
She returned to the Sun-Times in 2003, was promoted to Assistant City Editor in 2008, and is the recipient of numerous awards, including two 2009 Lisagor Awards; a 2010 Black Women’s Expo Phenomenal Woman Award; a 2011 NABJ Salute to Excellence Award; the Coalition for United Community Action’s 2013 Vernon C. Jarrett Par Excellence in Journalism Award; and a 2014 NABJ Salute to Excellence Award.
She sits on prestigious professional advisory and student mentoring boards of Northwestern University and the University of Iowa; is vice president and scholarship chair of the National Association of Black Journalists’ Chicago Chapter; and a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.
Ms. Ihejirika was born in Imo-State, Nigeria, her family emigrating here as refugees of the Nigerian-Biafran War in 1969. She is the proud mother of two sons.