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 Joe Madison, “The Black Eagle”, the award-winning national talk show host on SiriusXM Urban View radio.

Madison is on the case daily talking about politics and social activism, while challenging the status quo ensuring that people of color are not undervalued, underestimated, or marginalized. He has been named one of Talker Magazine’s 10 Most Important Radio Talk Show Hosts in America for eleven consecutive years.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. concludes his conversation with Ben Tankard, the godfather of Gospel/Jazz music, and author of ‘The Full Tank Life: Fuel Your Dreams, Ignite Your Destiny.’

A true Renaissance man, he also serves as a motivational speaker for the NBA, designs a line of men's clothing, and pilots his own plane. Together with his wife Jewel, he pastors a growing church outside of Nashville, TN.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Ben Tankard, the godfather of Gospel/Jazz music, and author of ‘The Full Tank Life: Fuel Your Dreams, Ignite Your Destiny.’

A true Renaissance man, he also serves as a motivational speaker for the NBA, designs a line of men's clothing, and pilots his own plane. Together with his wife Jewel, he pastors a growing church outside of Nashville, TN.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Dr. Soncia Reagins-Lilly, vice president for student affairs and dean of students at The University of Texas at Austin.

Lilly collaborates with students, faculty and staff to help create a safe and welcoming campus where students can thrive through healthy learning environments.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Taji Senior, Public Relations Executive for Girl Scouts of Central Texas.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Michael Gibson co-founder and chairman of Clear View Group, LLC, an African American investment firm based in Austin, TX, the new owners of Ebony Magazine and JETMag.com; and Lynn Norment, former senior writer and managing editor with Ebony Magazine.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. concludes his conversation with Dr. Rudy Jackson, Jr., Ph.D., founder and president of College Prep Professionals, LLC.

College Prep Professionals, LLC is one of the Atlanta, GA region’s most experienced and capable college preparation businesses.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Dr. Rudy Jackson, Jr., Ph.D., founder and president of College Prep Professionals, LLC.

College Prep Professionals, is one of the Atlanta, GA region’s most experienced and capable college preparation businesses.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. presents a tribute to the late George E. Curry, a veteran journalist and civil rights activist who was considered by many to be a dean of the Black press died August 20, 2016. He was 69.

Born George Edward Curry on February 23, 1947, in Tuscaloosa, Alabama; his mother worked as a domestic and his father was a mechanic. Curry's father abandoned the family when Curry was just seven years old, leaving him to step into the role of the man of the house, assisting his mother in raising his three younger sisters.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Soul music legend Candi Staton.

Staton just finished her sold-out, 'Young Hearts Run Free 40th Anniversary' concert tour of Europe and has now released her first gospel album since 2008 entitled  ‘It’s Time To Be Free.’

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.

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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."

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