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Felicia Middlebrooks

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Information about Felicia Middlebrooks

Profile image of Felicia Middlebrooks

Profession

Category:
MediaMakers
Occupation(s):
Production Company Chief Executive
Radio News Anchor

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Charcoal Gray
Favorite Food:
Mexican Food, Popcorn
Favorite Time of Year:
Fall
Favorite Vacation Spot:
None
Favorite Quote:
You'll never change that which you can tolerate.

Birthplace

Born:
5/29/1957
Birth Location:
Gary, Indiana

Profession

Category:
MediaMakers
Occupation(s):
Production Company Chief Executive
Radio News Anchor

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Charcoal Gray
Favorite Food:
Mexican Food, Popcorn
Favorite Time of Year:
Fall
Favorite Vacation Spot:
None
Favorite Quote:
You'll never change that which you can tolerate.

Birthplace

Born:
5/29/1957
Birth Location:
Gary
See how Felicia Middlebrooks is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Chicago radio journalist Felicia Middlebrooks was born May 29, 1957, in Gary, Indiana, to a teacher and a steelworker. Middlebrooks graduated from Gary's West Side High School in 1975; over the next seven years, she worked as a steelworker to finance her B.A. degree in mass communications at Purdue University, which she earned with honors. While pursuing her degree, Middlebrooks gained radio experience at four separate Northwestern Indiana stations.

Middlebrooks was hired as a full-time employee at WBBM news radio in 1983; for the next eighteen years, she worked as co-anchor of WBBM's Morning Drive, part of a lineup that toppled WGN's thirty-year streak as Chicago's top-rated morning station. The first woman and first African American to co-anchor Morning Drive, Middlebrooks was involved in numerous creative ventures; she served as the CEO of her own company, Saltshaker Productions. As a regular panelist on the Total Living Network's Chicago Newsmakers, Middlebrooks addressed spiritual issues; her written work appeared in a prestigious literary anthology, Souls of My Sisters. Middlebrooks contributed her time and talents serving as a trustee for the Children's Home and Aid Society, and was a member of the board of directors of WINGS, an organization founded to assist victims of domestic violence. Middlebrooks received the Associated Press Best Reporter Award for her insightful series of reports on domestic violence; the African American Leadership Council and the Urban League are among the many other organizations that honored her achievements.

When Middlebrooks left the air following a contract dispute in 2002, the Reverend Jesse Jackson and her fans intervened, and her needs were swiftly met. A longtime mentor to aspiring journalists, Middlebrooks continued working with young people in a teaching position at Purdue University's Calumet campus. In her spare time, Middlebrooks also wrote and published a novel.

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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Felicia Middlebrooks interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Felicia Middlebrooks's favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Felicia Middlebrooks describes her family history
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Felicia Middlebrooks remembers her father
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Felicia Middlebrooks discusses her father's profession, part I
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Felicia Middlebrooks remembers her mother
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Felicia Middlebrooks recalls her family's migration North
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Felicia Middlebrooks shares the sights, smells and sounds of her childhood home
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Felicia Middlebrooks describes her childhood personality
  • Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Felicia Middlebrooks recalls her early school years
  • Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Felicia Middlebrooks discusses her family's involvement in the church
  • Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Felicia Middlebrooks recalls her high school years, part I
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Felicia Middlebrooks discusses her father's other jobs
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Felicia Middlebrooks recalls her high school years, part II
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Felicia Middlebrooks recalls famous African Americans from Gary, Indiana
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Felicia Middlebrooks discusses her early interest in radio/television
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Felicia Middlebrooks remembers influential teachers
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Felicia Middlebrooks recalls having to leave college to work in the steel mill
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Felicia Middlebrooks discusses her early professional radio experience in Indiana
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Felicia Middlebrooks describes her first jobs in Chicago, Illinois, at CBS Channel 2 Television
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Felicia Middlebrooks describes getting her first on-air job as a radio reporter in Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Felicia Middlebrooks considers her skill set as a journalist
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Felicia Middlebrooks discusses the development of her career
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Felicia Middlebrooks describes her award-winning news coverage
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Felicia Middlebrooks discusses the undertakings of her production company
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Felicia Middlebrooks discusses her payrate negotiations with WBBM, Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Felicia Middlebrooks shares advice for aspiring journalists
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Felicia Middlebrooks discusses her volunteer activities
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Felicia Middlebrooks expresses her hopes and concerns for the black community
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Felicia Middlebrooks considers her legacy
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Felicia Middlebrooks shares reflections on her career
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Felicia Middlebrooks considers how she'd like to be remembered
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks with Bill Cosby after a taping of 'The Cosby Show,' New York, New York, ca. 1990
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks's parents, 1994
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks with other celebrities before a Starlight Foundation ball, 1993
  • Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks's fifth grade school portrait, Ivanhoe Elementary School, Gary, Indiana, ca. 1968
  • Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks in a Purdue University choir, West Lafayette, Indiana, 1970s
  • Tape: 4 Story: 11 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks in her high school band uniform after a parade, Gary, Indiana, 1970s
  • Tape: 4 Story: 12 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks's seventh grade school portrait, Thomas A. Edison Middle School, Gary, Indiana, ca. 1970
  • Tape: 4 Story: 13 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks dresses as Wonder Woman for a high school masquerade party, Gary, Indiana, ca. 1971
  • Tape: 4 Story: 14 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks with her parents upon her high school graduation, Gary, Indiana, 1975
  • Tape: 4 Story: 15 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks with his sisters and father at her Miller Beach home, Gary, Indiana, 1998
  • Tape: 4 Story: 16 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks conducts a radio interview at WLTH-AM, Gary, Indiana, late 1970s
  • Tape: 4 Story: 17 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks early in her tenure at WBBM-780 AM, Chicago, Illinois, 1982
  • Tape: 4 Story: 18 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks with winemaker, Robert Mondovi, at a wine tasting event
  • Tape: 4 Story: 19 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks represents WBBM-780AM, Chicago, Illinois, at a March of Dimes fundraiser, 1988
  • Tape: 4 Story: 20 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks welcomes guests to "Hollywood Comes to Chicago" event, Chicago, Illinois, 2000
  • Tape: 4 Story: 21 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks with her cousin and sister outside of her childhood home, Gary, Indiana, ca. 1967
  • Tape: 4 Story: 22 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks and her older sister, Gary, Indiana, 1957
  • Tape: 4 Story: 23 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks with Chicago radio personalities at an awards luncheon, Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 4 Story: 24 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks and colleagues represent WBBM AM-780 in a Christmas parade, Chicago, Illinois, 1983, part I
  • Tape: 4 Story: 25 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks at lunch with her mentor and two reporter colleagues, Indiana
  • Tape: 4 Story: 26 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks and colleagues represent WBBM AM-780 in a Christmas parade, Chicago, Illinois, 1983, part II
  • Tape: 4 Story: 27 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks with her former co-anchor in the WBBM AM-780 studio, ca. 1992
  • Tape: 4 Story: 28 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks's mother while pregnant, 1956
  • Tape: 4 Story: 29 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks with her sisters on a family outing, early 1960s
  • Tape: 4 Story: 30 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks at her sixth birthday party, Gary, Indiana, 1963, part I
  • Tape: 4 Story: 31 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks and her sister with their Christmas presents, ca. 1963
  • Tape: 4 Story: 32 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks at her sixth birthday party, Gary, Indiana, 1963, part II
  • Tape: 4 Story: 33 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks at her twelfth birthday party, Gary, Indiana, 1969
  • Tape: 4 Story: 34 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks on Memorial Day, Gary, Indiana, 1970
  • Tape: 4 Story: 35 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks, her sisters and her mother on Easter Sunday, Gary, Indiana, 1970
  • Tape: 4 Story: 36 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks's maternal grandmother and aunt, Birmingham, Alabama
  • Tape: 4 Story: 37 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks and Dan Rather in the WBBM AM-780 newsroom, Chicago, Illinois, 1997
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks with guest Tony Bennett, WBBM AM-780, Chicago, Illinois, 2000
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks's family portrait, Gary, Indiana, early 1960s
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks with Patti Labelle, 2000
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks is awarded the key to the city of Gary, Indiana by Mayor Richard Hatcher at an NAACP dinner, 1989
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks's mother presents her husband with a birthday present, late 1970s
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks with her sisters, mother and maternal grandfather, early 1960s
  • Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks and friends at her sixth birthday party, 1963
  • Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks with her sisters and her paternal grandfather, Bessemer, Alabama, early 1960s
  • Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks's mother with her three daughters in the family home, Gary, Indiana, February 1963
  • Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks and her sisters before Sunday School, Gary, Indiana, early 1960s
  • Tape: 5 Story: 11 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks with her mother and sisters on the steps of the library in Birmingham, Alabama, early 1960s
  • Tape: 5 Story: 12 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks watches her mother barbeque, Gary, Indiana, 1960s
  • Tape: 5 Story: 13 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks with her Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. sisters, Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana, late 1980s
  • Tape: 5 Story: 14 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks's high school senior portrait, West Side High School, Gary, Indiana, 1975
  • Tape: 5 Story: 15 - Photo - A portrait of Felicia Middlebrooks and her sisters, ca. 1980
  • Tape: 5 Story: 16 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks's youngest sister, 1990s
  • Tape: 5 Story: 17 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks attends Homecoming at Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana, 1978
  • Tape: 5 Story: 18 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks and other contestants at the Voice of Democracy competition, sponsored by the Veterans of Foreign Wars, 1970s
  • Tape: 5 Story: 19 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks emcees the Starlight Foundation ball, ca. 1992
  • Tape: 5 Story: 20 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks on the cover of Chicago, Illinois weekly N'Digo, 2002
  • Tape: 5 Story: 21 - Photo - Felicia Middlebrooks included in a feature on women in media, ca. 1988