Maria Elena Salinas

Honorary Degrees



María Elena Salinas serves as a Univision Network Anchor and is widely regarded as the most recognized Hispanic female journalist in the United States.

Salinas' career with Univision, the fifth largest television network in the United States and leading Spanish-language broadcasting company, has spanned over 25 years. 

Salinas is committed to empowering Latinos to transform their lives and communities.  She uses advocacy journalism to empower countless individuals on health issues, education and civic engagement, to name a few.  Recognizing the transformative power of education, she created a sponsorship in her name for college students interested in pursuing careers in broadcasting.  For nearly two decades, she has worked with the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) to encourage engagement in the political and civic process.  Her work with NALEO on the “Ya Es Hora” (It’s Time) initiative received a Peabody Award. 

She is one of the founders of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, a Washington D.C.-based organization dedicated to the advancement of Hispanic journalists in the United States.  The organization founded in 1984 now has over 2,300 members in the United States and Puerto Rico.She serves on the board of numerous organizations including the Hispanic Scholarship Fund and the International Women’s Media Foundation. 

Salinas has earned countless awards in recognition of her work and contributions.She received a Peabody Award, Walter Cronkite Award and Gracies Award for her documentary special “Entre el abandon y el rechazo” (Between Abandonment and Rejection), a news special on the plight of Central American children fleeing their countries for a better life in the United States.  She is also the recipient of an Emmy Award for Lifetime Achievement from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, an Edward R. Murrow Award for the her team’s coverage of the Atlanta Olympic Park bombings, the Intrepid Award from the National Organization of Women, and an award from the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund.

In recognition of her extraordinary professional accomplishments and commitment to transforming communities, the Board of Trustees of the California State University and California State University, Fullerton are proud to confer upon María Elena Salinas the honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters.