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 Tuesdays at 9:30 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.

zimbio.com

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Mike Haynes, a Pro Football Hall of Fame cornerback and prostate cancer survivor. Haynes is a spokesperson for the Know Your Stats campaign.

Hayes talks about the day he discovered he had prostate cancer, the need for a prostate screening and the Urology Care Foundation.

Courtesy of Warner Bros.

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with the Honorable Greg Mathis, former Superior Court judge for Michigan's 36th District and host of Judge Mathis.

Mathis talks about manhood, his election as the youngest judge in Michigan's history and the 19th season of his court-based reality show.

Darlene Devita / Beacon Press

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. concludes his conversation with Joseph Rosenbloom, author of Redemption: Martin Luther King Jr’s Last 31 Hours.

Rosenbloom was an intern at The Commercial Appeal in Memphis when King died in 1968. He talks with In Black America about the Lorraine Hotel, King's "From The Mountain" speech, the Poor People’s Campaign, and the historical momentum that was lost on April 4, 1968.

Darlene DeVita / Beacon Press

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Joseph Rosenbloom, author of Redemption: Martin Luther King Jr’s Last 31 Hours.

Rosenbloom was an intern at The Commercial Appeal in Memphis when King died in 1968. He talks with In Black America about the last two days of King's life, why his aides didn’t want him to go to Memphis, why James Earl Ray was in the city, and how a lapse in police security may have contributed to King's death. 

history.library.ucsf.edu

On this edition of In Black America, producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with Dr. Haile T. Debas, director emeritus at the University of California Global Health Institute; the Maurice Galante Distinguished Professor of Surgery, Emeritus; dean emeritus at the University of California, School of Medicine; and former UCSF chancellor.

Dr. Debas talks about being a physician, researcher, teacher and academic leader. He also discusses reinventing himself after retirement and the formation of UCSF Global Health Sciences.

Pages