Gente de NAHJ: Stacy Fernandez reflects on what it means to be Black and Latina

Stacy Fernández poses for a picture. PHOTO COURTESY OF STACY FERNANDEZ.

Stacy Fernandez is so proud of being Dominicana that she talks about where she comes from at least once a day.

Sitting outside her balcony in Austin,Texas, she paints portraits of people on her days off from work as a breaking news and education reporter for the Texas Tribune.

For the past three years, Fernandez has attended the NABJ convention and was excited to attend this year’s joint convention with NAHJ. As a Black Latina, Fernandez is part of the NABJ and wants to learn more about the NAHJ.

She was hoping to meet people in person. But because of the pandemic, her only participation this year was as a recruiter for the Texas Tribune booth in the virtual career fair.

Fernandez hails from Yonkers, New York, and says she adapted to Texan culture pretty easily. While she praises southern kindness, she misses the diverse food she had in New York. Before coming to Texas, she lived in Florida for a few years with her mother and then moved to New York to be closer to her grandmother.

She has fond memories of a summer trip she made to the Dominican Republic when she was growing up as well as learning from her grandmother how to sew and make empanadas.

Fernandez said she became a journalist because she wanted to highlight the stories of people with diverse racial and socioeconomic backgrounds. She’s been reflecting on diversity issues and the current racial and social justice reckoning happening in the U.S. after the killing of George Floyd.

“I’ve been thinking a lot about where I fit into these spaces of like ‘blackness’ and ‘latinidad’,” she said.

Adriana Morga is a senior at San Francisco State University, where she has studied photojournalism, political science and international relations. She has interned with Al Día, the Spanish language sister publication of the Dallas Morning News, and an on-call digital producer with KQED, an NPR member station in San Francisco. In the fall, she’ll serve as city news editor for San Francisco State University’s student newspaper, Golden Gate Xpress. Reach her at adrianamorgao [at] gmail [dot] com and on Twitter @adrianamorgao.

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