Tonya Francisco is an anchor of WGN Saturday Morning News and WGN Sunday Morning News, as of the expansion of weekend news in September 2016. Prior to that, Tonya was a general assignment reporter and fill-in anchor for WGN-TV. She joined CLTV in December of 2002 and was soon after named morning anchor. In 2012, she joined the WGN News team.

Tonya is an award-winning journalist who began her television career as a desk assistant at WLS-TV/Channel 7 in Chicago. She moved on to WOOD-TV in Grand Rapids, Michigan, to become a reporter and associate producer. After a year, she worked at WJRT-TV in Flint, Michigan. While there, Tonya worked her way up from general assignment reporter to weekend anchor.

Tonya is a native Chicagoan, proud alumna of Whitney Young Magnet High School and a graduate of the University of Illinois at Chicago. Tonya is a proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. and the National Association of Black Journalists.

Recent Articles
  • Chicago man completes walk to Washington in effort to raise awareness of gun violence

    CHICAGO —  A Chicago man is back home after walking nearly 700 miles to Washington D.C. to raise awareness about violence and guns. While the focus for the past few days has been on Las Vegas and the mass shooting there, in Chicago gun violence continues to make headlines.  Demetrius Nash says he’s tired from his journey, but he`s more energized than ever before to begin his work. “Every day I walked away from Chicago, someone was getting shot, someone […]

  • Easy accessibility to guns contributes to mass shootings, experts say

    CHICAGO — Many people are asking why mass shootings happen more frequently in the United States and some experts are weighing in. Researchers WGN spoke to said owning a gun provides some people with a sense of identity. They also said no other country has so many guns available and so easily available as the U.S.  And that, they said, is as the heart of the problem. “America does have a fascination with guns that is unlike what we see […]

  • Being prepared could save your life in an active shooter situation, experts say

    It’s a scenario no one wants to imagine: you’re in a crowd of people when gunshots ring out, as they did Sunday night at a country music concert in Las Vegas. Active shooter situations are usually over within 10 to 15 minutes, according to the Department of Homeland Security, and public safety experts say following a few basic principles whenever you go to a public event could save your life: Pay attention to your surroundings Personal safety consultant Doug Cummings […]

  • Top execs lead effort to bring Amazon HQ to Chicago area

    CHICAGO — Some of Chicago’s top business executives are leading the effort to bring online retailer Amazon’s second headquarters to the area. Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced Wednesday an “unprecedented coalition” of more than 600 leaders will “highlight the region’s competitiveness and strength.” Co-chairs include United Airlines CEO Oscar Munoz, Loop Capital Chairman and CEO Jim Reynolds and former Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker. Emanuel and Gov. Bruce Rauner are the group’s honorary co-chairs. Amazon has said it will spend more than […]

  • Gov. Rauner ‘strongly disagrees’ with anthem protests

    CHICAGO — Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner says he “strongly disagrees” with NFL players protesting during the national anthem. The Republican, a former businessman, is part owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers. During Sunday’s game in Chicago, all but one of the Steelers stayed in the locker room during the anthem in protest of President Donald Trump’s criticism of NFL players. Rauner says in a Monday statement that the protesters are “disrespecting” the country’s foundations and veterans. He says he “cannot and […]

  • Family of woman found dead at suburban health club speaks out

    BURR RIDGE, Ill. — The family of a woman found dead inside a bathroom stall at a suburban health club two days after entering is speaking out. The preliminary autopsy report from the Cook County Medical Examiner shows Patricia Austin, 78, died of natural causes. The family is not disputing that right now, but they said the circumstances surrounding her death just don’t add up. “For 78, she could outrun most,” Terry Austin, Patricia Austin’s son, said. That’s how he […]

  • Burglars crash car through front window of Bucktown store

    CHICAGO — Burglars crash a car through the front window of a Bucktown store early Monday morning. The smash and grab happened at Diplomatic 1750, near North Avenue and Paulina Street. Someone broke through the store’s front window and security shutter by driving a red car through them. An unknown number of people went inside and stole what they wanted. Diplomatic 1750 sells shoes and clothes. Their items range from costing a couple hundred dollars to a couple thousand. The […]

  • Hearing begins to determine fate of ex-priest who molested at least 25 boys

    CHICAGO — 424 people have been committed for life under the sexually violent persons act since it was enacted in 1998.  Prosecutors with the Illinois attorney general’s office are hoping former priest Daniel McCormack will be the next. McCormack sat stone-faced, occasionally taking notes as forensic psychiatrist Dr. Angeline Stanislaus explained how she reached the conclusion that McCormack suffers from pedophilia disorder and is sexually attracted to young males. In addition to detailing at least five cases where he fondled young […]

  • U.S. Senators Durbin and Graham discuss bipartisan DREAM Act

    After Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced Tuesday that the Trump administration is ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, Democrats in Congress had near uniform condemnation of the decision while Republican reactions were more mixed. Democratic Senate Whip Dick Durbin joined with Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham to call for a DREAM Act, which offered legal status to undocumented immigrants in return for attending college or joining the military, passed in the month of September. “It is time for us […]

  • Fresh haircuts, funded schools: CPS students head back to class

    CHICAGO — It’s official: summer vacation is over for CPS students, and hundreds of thousands of kids will head back to class tomorrow. As they do, there’s some good news to report: nearly 78 percent of CPS students who started 9th grade in 2012 graduated within 5 years. The biggest gains? African-American young men. More good news: that all-important first day of school haircut was being provided – free of charge – at six barbershops and salons as part of […]