Rita Oceguera

Injustice Watch

Reporter Profile

Rita Oceguera covers communities that ring Chicago, including Aurora, Cicero, Elgin, Joliet and Waukegan, for Injustice Watch. She earned a bachelor’s and master’s degree from Northwestern University, where she studied social justice and investigative reporting and focused on a range of Latino issues. During her internship at The Bubble in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Oceguera dove deep into the inequalities that women face as soccer players and sharpened her skills as a video editor. She then worked with The Chicago Reporter to examine the spread of business vacancies in Chicago and analyzed a prosperous Latino neighborhood. Her partnership with The Chicago Reporter led her into an investigation of the complexities that low income students face when applying to colleges. Originally from Aurora, Oceguera now lives in Chicago with her fiancé, her pet axolotl (a.k.a. a Mexican walking fish) and an abundance of plants.

Beat: Suburbs surrounding Chicago

This corps member helps shape coverage of an exurban beat that stretches across the outer ring suburbs of Chicago, including communities like Aurora, Elgin, Joliet, Cicero and Waukegan. These suburbs and exurbs have become the new ports of entry for immigrants due to the presence and growth of low-skilled jobs, affordable housing and good schools. But they're just far enough from Chicago newsrooms to not make the normal news cycles unless violence or scandal befalls them. Our reporter humanizes these communities, embedding with them and understanding their information needs. The corps member works closely with her editors to identify stakeholders, communities of practice and issues that are relevant to each of these local communities. The goal is to produce enterprise coverage off the news as well as identify important stories that are not otherwise getting told.