Hansi Lo Wang

Hansi Lo Wang is a National Desk reporter based at NPR's New York Bureau. He covers issues and events in the Northeast.

He previously reported on race, ethnicity and culture for NPR's Code Switch team. Since joining NPR in 2010 as a Kroc Fellow, he's contributed to NPR's breaking news coverage of the 2013 tornado in Moore, Okla., the trial of George Zimmerman in Florida and the Washington Navy Yard shooting. He has also reported for Seattle public radio station KUOW and worked behind the scenes of NPR's Weekend Edition as a production assistant.

In 2014, he won the National Journalism Award for General Excellence in Radio from the Asian American Journalists Association for his profile of a white member of a Boston Chinatown gang. He was also a finalist for a Salute to Excellence National Media Award from the National Association of Black Journalists.

A Philadelphia native, Wang speaks both Mandarin and Cantonese dialects of Chinese. As a student at Swarthmore College, he hosted, produced, and reported for a weekly podcast on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

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Code Switch
6:04 pm
Wed July 29, 2015

Once Outlaws, Young Lords Find A Museum Home For Radical Roots

Johanna Fernández, co-curator of a new exhibition about the Young Lords, points to pages of the group's newspaper on display at the Bronx Museum of the Arts.
Hansi Lo Wang NPR

Originally published on Wed July 29, 2015 7:56 pm

They were under watch by the FBI and the New York Police Department. And by the early 1970s, the Young Lords emerged as one of the country's most prominent radical groups led by Latino activists.

Inspired by the Black Panthers, a band of young Puerto Ricans wanted to form a Latino counterpart to the black nationalist group. In fact, one of the founding Young Lords in New York City almost started a group called the "Brown Tigers."

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Business
5:16 am
Thu July 23, 2015

Fast-Food Workers Cheer As $15 Minimum Wage Advances In New York State

Labor leaders, workers and activists attend a rally for a $15 minimum hourly wage Wednesday in New York City. A panel appointed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo recommended the increase.
Spencer Platt Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 23, 2015 2:40 pm

There aren't a lot of obscure government board meetings that warrant a watch party, let alone one with a marching band.

But that's how fast-food restaurant workers and their supporters celebrated Wednesday on a blocked-off street in Manhattan, as they watched a state panel recommend a $6.25 increase in their hourly wage, to $15.

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U.S.
5:44 am
Wed July 22, 2015

Newark Police Department Joins A Dozen Others Facing Federal Scrutiny

Originally published on Wed July 22, 2015 2:43 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Business
5:37 am
Tue July 21, 2015

Facing Tough Competition, A&P Seeks Bankruptcy Protection

Originally published on Tue July 21, 2015 2:02 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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U.S.
6:33 pm
Sat July 18, 2015

Theodore Roosevelt's 'Summer White House' Reopens To The Public

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Around the Nation
5:01 am
Tue July 14, 2015

New York Will Pay Eric Garner Family $5.9 Million To Avoid Lawsuit

Originally published on Tue July 14, 2015 7:15 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Around the Nation
7:52 am
Sat July 4, 2015

'Chasing Memories' In Their Refugee Camp 40 Years After Fleeing Vietnam

Former refugee Kuo Nam Lo, the reporter's mother, stands outside an old army barracks that's been converted into the Pennsylvania National Guard Military Museum at Fort Indiantown Gap.
Hansi Lo Wang NPR

Originally published on Sat July 4, 2015 11:04 am

My mother's family fled communism twice.

The first time was from China. Then, after Saigon fell in 1975, they left Vietnam.

My mother, Kuo Nam Lo, was 24 when she spent her first few months in the U.S. at a refugee camp at a military base along a stretch of the Appalachian Mountains in central Pennsylvania.

"I've always wanted to come back here," my mother told me in Cantonese on a recent drive through Fort Indiantown Gap. "Son, you've made my dream come true."

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Around the Nation
6:11 am
Wed June 24, 2015

S.C. Retailers Caught In The Middle Of Renewed Debate Over Confederate Flag

Originally published on Wed June 24, 2015 10:06 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

The Salt
7:03 am
Sat May 23, 2015

Clean Your Grill, And Other Hot Holiday Tips From Alton Brown

Planning to grill this Memorial Day? Below, Food Network chef Alton Brown has some tips to keep your flavor from going up in smoke.
iStockphoto

Editor's note: A version of this story was originally published in May 2012.

If there's one grilling tip to remember this Memorial Day weekend, it should be this: Flame is bad.

"Flame does nasty things to food," food historian and science guy Alton Brown tells NPR's Scott Simon.

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Code Switch
3:34 am
Thu May 14, 2015

N.Y. Police Shooting Case Divides City's Asian-Americans

NYPD Officer Peter Liang arrives at Kings County Supreme Court in Brooklyn, N.Y., after being indicted for the fatal shooting of an unarmed man while patrolling the darkened stairwell of a Brooklyn housing project last November.
Shannon Stapleton Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu May 14, 2015 4:00 pm

Of all the police officers involved in the recent deaths of unarmed men which have drawn national attention, only one is Asian-American – New York City Police Officer Peter Liang, the son of Chinese immigrants.

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Business
4:50 pm
Mon May 11, 2015

New York Announces Crackdown On Nail Salons

Originally published on Tue May 12, 2015 3:57 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Around the Nation
10:38 pm
Fri May 8, 2015

A New Baltimore Model? 'Officer On The Beat ... Pastor On The Corner'

Pastor Rodney Hudson sits on the steps of Ames Memorial United Methodist Church in West Baltimore, blocks away from the center of the protests and rioting that occurred last month.
Hansi Lo Wang NPR

Originally published on Sat May 9, 2015 12:35 am

The federal investigation into Baltimore's police force is one of the first steps some in the city believe will rebuild the relationship between officers and residents.

Some faith leaders are optimistic that can be done, and past police programs have helped. But other residents are skeptical that West Baltimore residents' trust can be regained.

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Code Switch
3:40 am
Fri April 17, 2015

Deaths Of Unarmed Black Men Revive 'Anti-Lynching Plays'

Lauren Lattimore (left), Wi-Moto Nyoka, Edmund Alyn Jones and Courtney Harge rehearse a scene from Blue-Eyed Black Boy, a play about lynching that was written around 1930.
Hansi Lo Wang NPR

Originally published on Fri April 17, 2015 2:06 pm

An obscure but riveting genre of theater is being revived in New York City.

They're called "anti-lynching plays." Most were written by black playwrights during the early 1900s to show how lynchings devastated African-American families.

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Code Switch
5:04 pm
Fri April 10, 2015

Painting The 'Epic Drama' Of The Great Migration: The Work Of Jacob Lawrence

Each of the 60 paintings in Jacob Lawrence's Great Migration series is accompanied with a caption. For this panel, he wrote in 1941: "In every town Negroes were leaving by the hundreds to go North and enter into Northern industry."
Courtesy of The Phillips Collection

Originally published on Fri April 10, 2015 8:58 pm

There's no historical marker outside Jacob Lawrence's childhood home in New York City's Harlem neighborhood.

But Khalil Gibran Muhammad, director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, has an idea of what it might say: "Here lived one of the 20th century's most influential visual artists, a man named Jacob Lawrence, who was a child of southern migrants."

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Code Switch
10:16 pm
Thu April 9, 2015

Civilians Can Record Police Encounters, But When Is It Interference?

Cellphones were used to record a 2012 confrontation between protesters and police in Springfield, Ill.
Seth Perlman AP

Originally published on Fri April 10, 2015 2:50 pm

The arrest of South Carolina police Officer Michael Slager, who shot and killed Walter Scott in North Charleston this week, came shortly after the release of a cellphone video recorded by an eyewitness.

The filming of police by civilians has also sparked controversy, and it often causes confusion about what is legal.

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Law
5:12 pm
Wed April 1, 2015

Sen. Robert Menendez Indicted On Corruption Charges

Originally published on Wed April 1, 2015 8:00 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

A grand jury has indicted Senator Robert Menendez of New Jersey on federal corruption charges. Menendez made a brief statement to reporters after the indictment was announced.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDINGS)

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U.S.
3:34 am
Wed March 4, 2015

Immigrants Worry They'll Face Deportation After Deferred Action Delay

Wilfredis Ayala, an unauthorized immigrant from El Salvador, lives on Long Island, N.Y., with his U.S.-born son, Justin, and Justin's mother, Wendy Urbina.
Hansi Lo Wang NPR

Originally published on Wed March 4, 2015 3:21 pm

Around 4 million unauthorized immigrants are stuck in legal limbo more than two weeks after a federal judge in Texas suspended President Obama's move to temporarily protect them from deportation.

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Code Switch
5:14 am
Sat February 21, 2015

Korean Tailors Try To Keep The Lunar New Year Hanbok Ritual Alive

Models present the traditional costume known as hanbok during the 2010 Korea Hanbok Festival in Seoul.
Ahn Young-joon AP

Originally published on Sat February 21, 2015 11:06 pm

Getting ready for the Lunar New Year once meant buying a new set of clothes for many families of Korean ancestry.

For centuries, the costume known as hanbok – a two-piece outfit traditionally made of embroidered cotton or silk worn by men and women – has played a central role in the new year's wardrobe.

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Around the Nation
4:07 pm
Tue February 17, 2015

Judge's Decision Leaves Immigrants In Legal Limbo

Jesus, an unauthorized immigrant from Mexico, gets help with tax documents from Mun Yin Yeow, a staff member at Atlas: DIY, a nonprofit in Brooklyn, N.Y. He asked NPR not to use his last name because he fears deportation if his application for deportation relief is not approved.
Hansi Lo Wang NPR

Originally published on Tue February 17, 2015 7:08 pm

A federal judge in South Texas said President Obama had overstepped his authority with his executive actions on immigration. Now, the new court ruling has left some unauthorized immigrants in legal limbo and slowed down months of preparation by immigration attorneys.

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Around the Nation
6:59 pm
Mon February 2, 2015

Fuhgeddaboudit: New York Accent On Its Way Out, Linguists Say

Heather Quinlan searched for New York accents around the city for her documentary If These Knishes Could Talk. She holds up a sign at the Whitehall Ferry Terminal in Manhattan.
Hansi Lo Wang NPR

Originally published on Mon June 1, 2015 7:26 pm

There are some cities you can identify with just an accent, including New York.

But linguists say that those who speak in the classic New York tongue are part of a dying breed.

To find them, filmmaker Heather Quinlan went accent hunting around the city, holding a sign that reads, "Do you have a New York accent? Then talk to me." She directed If These Knishes Could Talk: The Story of the New York Accent, a documentary about the decline of many of New York's well-known accents.

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