John L. Hanson Jr.

Host, Producer, In Black America

John L. Hanson is the producer and host of the nationally syndicated radio series In Black America. It’s heard on home station KUT Monday nights at 10:30 p.m., as well as weekly on close to 20 stations across the country. The weekly podcast of IBA, the only nationally broadcast black-oriented public affairs radio program, is one of KUT’s most popular podcasts.

Hanson’s love of radio started in his hometown, Detroit, as a teenager. He began as a music programmer and youth reporter for the student station in his school. Upon his high school graduation, he traveled to Austin, Texas, to attend Huston-Tillotson College, and landed a DJ slot at a small, low wattage station in nearby Lockhart where he offered a popular nightly program of jazz and soul music. Eventually he was hired by KUT radio in 1974 where his first assignment was to produce a nightly program called “Soul on FM” which became an immediate success and ultimately earned him recognition as “Best DJ in Texas” by Texas Monthly magazine in 1976.

In 1977, Hanson received a Minority Training Grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which he used to learn the ropes for setting up a public affairs program for KUT. Upon his return from the CPB workshops, Hanson turned his attention to improving and increasing information about the black community, which was not effectively reaching the local media outlets. He soon created Access, a weekly, live, phone-in program on KUT, which allowed experts in various fields and endeavors to address the public about their intended impact on the Austin community. From there, Hanson was promoted to the producer of In Black America after its previous host left the city in 1980.

Since that time, Hanson has served many roles at KUT, including being the station’s interim GM on two occasions. He retired from KUT in 2011 but has continued to work on IBA and host the Old School Dance Party on sister station KUTX 98.9 Friday afternoons from 4-7 p.m. Hanson is married to the former Latischa M. Merritt; he has two children, Kacey and Michael.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Dr. Stephen G. Peters, founder of the nationally recognized Gentlemen's and Ladies Club programs, author, and superintendent-elect of the Laurens County School District 55 in South Carolina.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Shanté Bacon, Founder and CEO of 135th Street Agency, a strategic communications and experiential marketing firm that specializes in campaigns reaching the youth consumer and business professional. They translate brand messages in a culturally-savvy yet socially responsible manner, while our experiential arm designs customer experiences that enhance the consumer's relationship with the brand.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Dr. Keith Corson, visiting professor of English at Rhodes College and author of ‘Trying to Get Over: African American Directors After Blaxploitation, 1977-1986.’

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. concludes his conversation with Dr. Monique W. Morris, Ed.D., education scholar, co-founder of the National Black Women’s Justice Institute, and author of ‘PUSHOUT: The Criminalization of Black Girls in Schools.’

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Dr. Monique W. Morris, Ed.D., education scholar, co-founder of the National Black Women’s Justice Institute, and author of ‘PUSHOUT: The Criminalization of Black Girls in Schools.’

PUSHOUT: is a discussion about the experiences of African American girls across the country whose intricate lives are misunderstood, highly judged–by teachers, administrators, and the justice system–and degraded by the very institutions charged with helping them flourish.

lightedgestudios.com

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Jarrad Henderson, producer of ‘Beyond-This-Place: The Visual History of African American Fraternities and Sororities.’

African American Fraternities and Sororities have played an important role in the development of African American identity for over one hundred years. Beyond-This-Place is an independent documentary project that examines the rich culture of African American Greek Letter Organizations.

Steve Dietl

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Thomas Carter, actor, film and television director.

Carter still recalls watching Roots, almost 40 years ago. The 1977 television miniseries, which soared in ratings and awards despite the network’s low expectations, that told the somber and horrific story of African-American slavery through the eyes of Alex Haley's family enslaved through multiple generations.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Dr. John B. Diamond, the Hoefs-Bascom Professor of Education at University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Education, and co-author of “Despite The Best Intentions,”

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Dr. Leonard Scott co-founder/CEO of Tyscot Music and Entertainment.   

Tyscot Music and Entertainment  was founded in 1976 when dentist Leonard Scott and Craig Tyson started the label for the sole purpose of releasing their church choir's first album. Through the first decade, Tyscot's sales were consistent but modest.

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On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Spencer Haywood, NBA/ABA Legend and Hall-of-Famer.

Haywood will always be remembered as the guy who opened the door for underclassmen college basketball players to leave college early to enter the NBA, thereby creating the "Spencer Haywood rule."

yourblackworld.com

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. concludes his conversation with Erin Aubry Kaplan, journalist, columnist, educator and author of ‘I Heart Obama.’

Indybay.org

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Erin Aubry Kaplan, journalist, columnist, educator and author of ‘I Heart Obama.’

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Merri Dee, legendary television and radio personality, and author of ‘Life Lessons on Faith, Forgiveness & Grace.’

As a trailblazer in both radio and television, Dee has served as a newscaster, talk-show host, and staff announcer. Later she served as Director of Community Relations at superstation WGN-TV and as advisor to other Tribune owned TV stations.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Dr. John Telford, former Detroit Public Schools Superintendent and author of ‘Will The First: The Sage of Sports/Civil Rights Pioneer Will Robinson.’

Telford has written a spellbinding book about his coaching colleague at Pershing High School (Detroit, MI) – the late, legendary Will Robinson.  Both men were All-Americans – Telford as a sprinter at Wayne State University in the 1950’s and Robinson as a quarterback at West Virginia State in the 1930’s.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Keith L. Brown, 'Motivator of the Millennium.'

Insight Publishing named Brown one of the top 50 speakers and experts in education today. He is a Professional Speaker and trainer whose keynotes and workshops enhance the SUPER – VISION of the masses while reducing the supervision to all under the sound of his vibrant voice.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with the late legendary blues musician B.B. King. King died on May 14, 2015. He was 89.

The winner of 15 Grammy Awards, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the Kennedy Center Honors, and more, King leaves a legacy of influence on American music. Coming from the cotton fields of the Mississippi Delta, he remained true to the blues, and won millions of fans including the Rolling Stones, Eric Clapton, Buddy Guy and U.S. Presidents.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Dr. Foyekemi Ikyaator, emergency room physician and Medical Director of Life SaversER, located in Houston, Texas.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Tunette Powell, motivational speaker, author, education consultant and co-founder of The Truth Heals.

Powell has made it her mission to be a voice of hope and healing for some of the world’s most despaired and underserved populations. She currently serves as the CEO of The Truth Heals and sits on a host of nonprofit boards.

Cornell University

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Dr. Edward E. Baptist, Professor in the Department of History, and House Dean, Becker House at Cornell University.

Americans tend to cast slavery as a pre-modern institution—the nation’s original sin, perhaps, but isolated in time and divorced from America’s later success. But to do so robs the millions who suffered in bondage of their full legacy.

Nuvo.net

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. presents highlights of a speech given by Bobby Seale, co-founder of the Black Panther Party in the fall of 1996 at the 10th Annual Heman Sweatt Symposium on Civil Rights.

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