Sonia Nazario

Sonia Nazario is an award-winning journalist best known for Enrique's Journey, her story of a Honduran boy's struggle to find his mother in the U.S. Published as a series in the Los Angeles Times, Enrique's Journey won the Pulitzer Prize for feature writing in 2003 and is now available in an edition for young adults and in multiple languages.

When a national crisis erupted in 2014 over the detention of unaccompanied immigrant children at the border, Nazario returned to Honduras to report an article that was published in The New York Times in July.  In her piece, she detailed the violence causing the exodus and argued that it is a refugee crisis, not an immigration crisis. After the article was published, she addressed the U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations and gave many interviews to national media, including The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, NBC's Meet the Press, Anderson Cooper 360, and Al Punto with Jorge Ramos (Spanish).

In this interview with Colorín Colorado, Sonia describes how she met Enrique and why she decided to retrace his journey despite dangerous and difficult conditions. She also offers tips for schools serving unaccompanied children and youth who have traveled north from Central America in recent years. 

Note: Resources for educators, updates on Enrique's family, and information about how to support unaccompanied children and youth are all available on Sonia's website.

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Sonia Nazario is an award-winning journalist whose stories have tackled some of this country’s most intractable problems — hunger, drug addiction, immigration — and have won some of the most prestigious journalism and book awards.

A fluent Spanish speaker of Jewish ancestry whose personal history includes living in Argentina during the so-called dirty war, she is a passionate and dynamic speaker. She likes to say that "migration is in her blood" as both her father's and mother's families moved to Argentina to escape persecution, her father's family fleeing Christian persecution in Syria and her mother's family leaving Poland during World War II.

Nazario often is hired by school districts and universities where Enrique's Journey is being used in the classroom to launch discussions around immigration, racial discrimination, U.S. foreign policy, and other issues.  Her expertise in immigration makes her as a popular speaker for legislative, legal and philanthropic audiences.

Her humanitarian efforts led to her selection as the Don and Arvonne Fraser Human Rights Award recipient from the Advocates for Human Rights in 2015. She also was named a 2015 Champion for Children by First Focus, and a 2015 Golden Door winner by HIAS Pennslyvania.

Nazario, who grew up in Kansas and in Argentina, has written extensively from Latin America and about Latinos in the United States. Enrique's Journey won more than a dozen awards, among them the Pulitzer Prize for feature writing, the George Polk Award for International Reporting, the Grand Prize of the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award, and the National Assn. of Hispanic Journalists Guillermo Martinez-Márquez Award for Overall Excellence. In 1998, Ms. Nazario was a Pulitzer Prize finalist for a series on children of drug addicted parents. And in 1994, she won a George Polk Award for Local Reporting for a series about hunger among schoolchildren in California.

The complete version of this biography is available on Sonia's website.