Teran Powell

Race & Ethnicity Reporter

In 2018, Teran became WUWM's Race & Ethnicity Reporter. She joined WUWM in the fall of 2017 as the station’s very first Eric Von Fellow.

Teran began her journalism career during her years as a student at Marquette University. She worked as a reporter for Marquette student media and the Milwaukee Neighborhood News Service covering local events and community activists. She has also freelanced for the Shepherd Express and worked as a show editor for Fox 6 News.

A Chicago native, Teran’s passion for journalism lies within being up close and personal with people in the community and the happenings that affect them directly. With a genuine passion for storytelling, Teran’s goal is to tell the stories that need to be told.

Screenshot / Milwaukee Journal Sentinel / Facebook

WUWM has been partnering with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Milwaukee PBS and the Milwaukee Public Library on an initiative called Listen MKE. Its goal: help north side residents get the information they want and need.

This Listen MKE conversation focuses on COVID-19 and we're talking about hesitancy toward the COVID-19 vaccine. As distribution continues across the country — including here in Wisconsin — many are anxious to get the shot, but many are not; especially in communities of color.

cpcthatsme / stock.adobe.com

There are currently only six states in the U.S. that have laws against hair discrimination: California, New York, New Jersey, Virginia, Colorado, and Washington. Montgomery County, Maryland also bans the practice.

Lawmakers in Wisconsin introduced a similar bill in 2019 but it didn’t pass.

Now, Milwaukee’s Common Council is stepping up with its own measure. Alderwoman Milele Coggs is one of the co-sponsors. She says for many people, hair is not “just hair.”

Jack Hurbanis / WUWM

The number of people getting tested for COVID-19 in Milwaukee County continues to be lower than health officials would like. They’re urging residents to take advantage of testing capacity.

During a media update Thursday, Darren Rausch, director of the City of Greenfield Health Department, said data trends are showing continued increases in cases county wide in the most recent weeks.

Yet, he said, testing is still lower than expected.

Joe Raedle/Getty Images

The city of Milwaukee is beginning to vaccinate frontline workers against the coronavirus. The city received 100 doses of Pfizer’s vaccine Wednesday afternoon. Eight-hundred more doses will come in staggered shipments next week.

Mayor Tom Barrett told reporters that distribution begins Thursday for some health and fire department personnel.

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Editor's note: This story contains explicit and offensive language.

A UPS driver’s racist remarks that were caught on video during a delivery in Milwaukee last month has some advocacy groups condemning the comments and calling for UPS to take action.

The delivery, a week before Christmas, was on the city’s south side, a predominantly Latino area.

Teran Powell

Kenosha County District Attorney Michael Graveley is expected to annouce his decision Tuesday afternoon on whether to charge the officer responsible for shooting Jacob Blake last summer leaving him paralyzed from the waist down. 

On Monday, the Blake family and Kenosha community leaders held a press conference to demand Officer Rusten Sheskey be fired, charged and convicted. A few dozen supporters joined them.

Blake’s father, Jacob Blake Sr., said he wants him charged with attempted murder. 

Chuck Quirmbach / WUWM

Federal CARES Act money provided to state, local and tribal governments impacted by COVID-19 was set to expire on Dec. 31, 2020. But Congress passing the $900 billion stimulus package earlier this month, means local municipalities have until the end of 2021 to use up their CARES funds. That’s according to Milwaukee County Executive David Crowley.

During a COVID-19 media briefing Tuesday, Crowley said the extension didn’t come with any additional funding and that could put the county in a tough spot next year.

Teran Powell / WUWM

Much of the news of 2020 was dominated by two major stories: the coronavirus pandemic and nationwide protests against police brutality that were accompanied by calls for immediate police reform.

Here’s how some of those stories unfolded in Wisconsin.

Jack Hurbanis / WUWM

The Moderna COVID-19 vaccine arrived in Milwaukee County on Tuesday. Distribution among county behavioral health department personnel has begun.

That’s according to County Executive David Crowley. "We’ll be among some of the first to access this vaccine, and though we know that this batch won't provide enough for all eligible (behavioral health) department employees, we do expect to receive more shipments of the vaccine in the coming months until all staff who at least want to be vaccinated are able to," he said.

Andrey Popov / stock.adobe.com

Many people are eager for their chance to get the COVID-19 vaccine, but there are those who don’t share that feeling — especially in communities of color.

Mike Hutchinson said he will be getting the vaccine when it’s widely available. He's already had COVID-19 and wants to prevent it from coming back.

"I definitely plan to get it if becomes readily available for me because I have two daughters and just because of the close contact I am with people," he said. 

UW Health

This week, Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine made its way to Wisconsin. The nearly 50,000 vaccines are being delivered to eight hubs across the state. Department of Health Service’s Secretary-Designee Andrea Palm said Thursday that the logistics, distribution and transportation have been smooth. And that health care workers are already being vaccinated.

She said there are stories of health care providers who’ve been overcome with emotion as they’ve received the vaccine. Palm said she didn’t think about how much relief “we’d all feel” as a vaccine began rolling out.

Jack Hurbanis / WUWM

As a coronavirus vaccine gets closer, state health officials want Wisconsin residents to remember that the pandemic has not gone away. In a media update Tuesday, officials urged people to recommit themselves to practices that help stop the spread of the virus — like staying home, limiting trips outside to just the essentials such as the grocery store and the pharmacy, and avoiding interacting with people you don’t live with.

Department of Health Services’ Secretary-designee Andrea Palm said we also need to recommit ourselves to testing.

Scott Olson/Getty Images

The recount of votes cast during the presidential election concluded in Milwaukee County Friday evening and in Dane County Sunday morning. The final tally shows, once again, that President-elect Joe Biden handily won the primarily Democratic counties over incumbent President Donald Trump. The Biden-Harris ticket picked up a net total of 87 votes.

The breakdown in Dane County showed Democrat Biden losing 91 votes, bringing his total to 260,094. Republican Trump was down 46 votes in the county, bringing his total to 78,754. The net effect was a loss of 45 votes for Biden.

Scott Olson/Getty Images

The recount of votes cast during the presidential election concluded in Milwaukee County Friday evening, and the final tally shows, once again, that President-elect Joe Biden won the primarily Democratic county over incumbent President Donald Trump.

The count started last Friday. Biden gained 257 votes in Milwaukee County, bringing his total to 317,527. Trump gained 125 votes, bringing his total to 134,482. Dane County’s recount will continue into the weekend.

Jack Hurbanis / WUWM

Updated Wednesday at 9:20 a.m. CST

Wisconsin Council of Churches / YouTube

A number of Wisconsin religious leaders urged the public Monday to adhere to COVID-19 precautions as cases continue to surge in the state.

They reiterated messaging like wear a mask, practice physical distancing, wash your hands, and only leave your home for essential trips.

The faith leaders are also urging congregates to observe upcoming holidays by worshiping from home.

Scott Olson / Getty Images

The coronavirus is not slowing down in Milwaukee County. Health officials reported Thursday that there are more than 47,000 cases, and the county is inching up to 500 deaths.

This past Tuesday was the highest single-day increase in COVID-19 hospitalizations in the county — a record 418. For comparison, Dr. Ben Weston says the county barely crossed 200 hospitalizations at any point earlier in the pandemic.

Scott Olson / Getty Images

State health officials continue to report that Wisconsin is in a crisis regarding COVID-19.

Wednesday was another record-breaking day for coronavirus cases. Department of Health Services Secretary-Designee Andrea Palm says the state added nearly 6,000 new cases since Tuesday.

She says the seven-day average of new cases is more than 4,800. One month ago it was 2,400. Two months ago, it was 767. That’s a 531% increase.

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Election Day is finally here. Thousands of people will head to the polls in Wisconsin but not as many as in previous presidential elections. That’s because a record 1.9 million Wisconsinites voted before Election Day.

Some people made plans to vote early before today after seeing what happened in April’s presidential primary.

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Despite the ongoing threat of COVID-19 in Wisconsin and across the country, a record number of people cast their ballots for the general election. According to the Wisconsin Elections Commission, more than 1.8 million people have already returned their ballots.

Screenshot / Wisconsin Department of Health Services / YouTube

Updated at 12:12 p.m. CT

COVID-19 cases continue to climb in Wisconsin. On Friday, the state Department of Health Services reported more than 5,096 new cases. That brings the total number of cases in the state to more than 220,000.

Teran Powell

Millions of people have already cast their ballots for this year’s presidential election, but get out the vote efforts are still very active, including those aimed at Black and Latino voters.

A variety of organizations have tried to appeal to these communities, stressing the importance of voting, and how to do so accurately and safely.

Teran Powell

The city of Wauwatosa was the backdrop for another protest on Thursday. A few hundred people gathered for the Rally for Justice in Hart Park. They’re continuing calls for justice in the cases of the two men and one teen killed by Officer Joseph Mensah – Antonio Gonzalez, Jay Anderson Jr., and Alvin Cole.

Scott Olson / Getty Images

Wauwatosa Mayor Dennis McBride and Wauwatosa Police Chief Barry Weber addressed members of the media Monday in an effort to be “totally transparent” about what’s happened in the city over the last few days. But some protesters say they’re not telling the full story.

Scott Olson / Getty Images

Protests against social injustice and violence by police have been ongoing in Wauwatosa since the summer. They've centered around suspended police Officer Joseph Mensah, who has shot and killed three people of color in the line of duty.

The cries of the community grew louder last week after Milwaukee County District Attorney John Chisholm chose not to charge Mensah in the February fatal shooting of 17-year-old Alvin Cole.

Screenshot / WUWM / Facebook

WUWM is partnering with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Milwaukee PBS and the Milwaukee Public Library on an initiative we call Listen MKE. Its goal: help Milwaukee’s north side residents get the information they want and need. More specifically, we want to better understand what's most important to people who live in these Milwaukee neighborhoods and help fill information gaps.

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The number of coronavirus cases in Wisconsin hit another record single-day high Thursday, with more than 3,000 positive tests.

Due to recent increases, Gov. Tony Evers announced this week that the alternate care facility at state fair park would be opening as surges threaten the state’s health care systems. Evers also issued an executive order for businesses to reduce occupancy to 25% capacity.

Michelle Maternowski / WUWM

READ: No Charges For Wauwatosa Officer In Killing Of Black Teen

The Milwaukee County District Attorney’s Office could announce a decision Wednesday on whether to charge Wauwatosa Police Officer Joseph Mensah in the death of Alvin Cole.

Mensah shot Cole, who was 17-years-old, in February when responding to a disturbance at Mayfair Mall. Police say Cole ran and fired a weapon. His family disputes the claim.

Cole was Black; so is Mensah.

Thomas Kronsteiner / Getty Images

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo stopped in Madison on Wednesday to address foreign policy, with an emphasis on China, in the state Capitol.

Pompeo’s visit to Wisconsin was one of three from members of President Trump’s administration this week. Trump was just campaigning in Mosinee a week ago.

State Senate President Roger Roth invited Pompeo to speak.

Courtesy of Marquette University

Marquette University has agreed to plans of action put forth by the campus’ Black Student Union, to create a more welcoming and inclusive space for Black students – on campus and in the city. The plans include full-ride scholarships, a permanent cultural center for Black students, and programs dedicated to raising awareness of bias, harassment and discrimination faced by diverse student populations.

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