Leslie Berestein Rojas Immigration and Emerging Communities Reporter

Leslie Berestein-Rojas
Contact Leslie Berestein Rojas

Leslie Berestein Rojas is KPCC's Immigration and Emerging Communities Reporter.

An award-winning journalist with several years’ experience reporting on immigration issues, Berestein Rojas most recently covered immigration on the U.S.-Mexico border for the San Diego Union-Tribune. She has retraced the steps of migrants along desert smuggling trails, investigated immigrant detention contractors, and told the stories of families left behind in Mexico’s migrant-sending towns.

A native of Cuba raised in Los Angeles, Leslie has also written for Time, People, the Orange County Register and the Los Angeles Times. She has reported from Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean.


Stories by Leslie Berestein Rojas

Tamales mania in El Sereno

Tamales! What can be better this time of year? I ventured over to the L.A. Tamale Throwdown in El Sereno after it kicked off this afternoon to take a few photos and, well, eat tamales.

RIP Rudy Regalado, timbalero of El Chicano

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ndjqEA37CSY

A Chinese-American student's pending deportation to Peru

A story that has been making the rounds in recent days is that of Steve Li, a 20-year-old Chinese-American college student from San Francisco who is being held in an Arizona immigrant detention center awaiting his imminent deportation to Peru.

In the news this morning: DREAM Act vote likely, trouble in Tennessee, a Chinese-American being deported to Peru, more

Dream Act may get another push in lame-duck session - Arizona Republic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid plans to make one last push for the legislation in the final days of the 111th Congress.

A Marine of extraordinary tenacity

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ycZOgio48h4

Immigrant soldiers: Record number naturalized in past year, most since 1955

In time for Veterans Day, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced yesterday that a record number of U.S. military personnel became citizens in fiscal year 2010, which ended Sept.

In the news this morning: A TN legislator's 'rats' comment, honoring immigrant veterans, DREAM Act revisited, more

Tennessee GOP Lawmaker Warns Undocumented Immigrants Will ‘Multiply’ Like ‘Rats' - Think Progress Video shows legislator comparing immigrants to rodents while discussing prenatal care.

Two Cuban bakeries = more papas rellenas for Downey. What's not to love?

In most of L.A. county's Latino suburbs, the news of a bakery opening isn’t usually anything to get excited about, let alone anything that makes the gossip circuit. Not the case in Downey, though, home to a cafecito-drinking, pastelito-loving community of Cuban immigrants and their descendants, my family included.

A haunting tribute to 'Los 72'

Via a post on Facebook the other day, I came across this moving tribute and "virtual altar" dedicated to the 72 U.S.-bound migrants who were massacred last August in the Mexican state of Tamaulipas, just a stone's throw from the Texas border.

Michele Norris's 'The Grace of Silence:' the conundrum of racism and what isn't said

Tomorrow I'll be interviewing Michele Norris, co-host of NPR's All Things Considered, about her recently published memoir, The Grace of Silence. It's a powerful book that began as an exploration of race and the unspoken conversations surrounding it in the United States.

Report: If they could, some U.S. Latinos would rather live elsewhere

The results of a Gallup study released yesterday show that if some of the nation's Latinos could live elsewhere, they would. Based on a telephone survey of 1,000 Latino adults, the new study shows that more than one in seven, or an estimated 4 million, would leave the United States if they could.

In the news this morning: Another Arizona-style law, a tragic adoption-deportation case, racial obstacles for the GOP, more

Texas Immigration Law Under Proposal Would Resemble Arizona's Hard-Line Approach - Huffington Post A proposed immigration law in Texas closely resembles Arizona's controversial statute.

Immigrants and the 'new maturity' of L.A.

A report released last week by Cal State Los Angeles' Pat Brown Institute contains an interesting section about immigration and the "new maturity" of Los Angeles, examining the interwoven relationship between immigrants who settle in Los Angeles, the children they raise here, and the city's changing face as native-born Angelenos become the majority and the city's post-World War II baby boom generation reaches retirement age.

American snapshot: Koreatown

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Longest waits for immigrant visas: November

We're into the second week of November, which means it's high time that I post the longest current waits as listed in the U.S. State Department’s monthly Visa Bulletin.