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
  • Suspect sought after mother scheduled to testify at murder trial is fatally shot

    GARY, Ind. – The search for a suspect continues after a mother who was supposed to testify at a murder trial became a murder victim herself. Pamela Hunter was gunned down in her Gary, Ind., home early Tuesday morning.  Her 8-year-old daughter was shot in the foot but survived. Attorney and former Lake County prosecutor Jamise Perkins is calling for a stronger witness protection program in Lake County, Indiana. “I do believe if she had not been a witness in […]

  • Customer fatally shoots would-be robber in Gary

    GARY, Ind. — The investigation continues after a suspected holdup left a robbery suspect dead. Two men approached an employee at a used car lot in the 400 block of W. Ridge Rd in Gary.  They pulled out a gun and tried to rob him this Wednesday afternoon. But a customer at the lot pulled out his own gun and shot and killed one suspect in self defense. The other suspect remains on the loose. Gary police are still investigating […]

  • CPS increases school budgets by $60 million

    CHICAGO — Chicago Public Schools will receive an extra $60 million in next year’s budget. The increase brings the CPS budget for the upcoming school year to $3.1 billion. The money will be used for higher teacher salaries and student programming. More students will have access to international baccalaureate and  STEM programs. The budget also includes funding to hire 10 new counselors to support high school students in high-needs schools. WGN will have more on this story on Tuesday’s Evening […]

  • Chicago restaurant staff stunned with generous tip

    CHICAGO — A diner gave a generous tip at a Chicago restaurant over the weekend that left the staff speechless. He loved the food and service so much, he gave a nearly 500 percent tip. Sous chefs Richard Graham and Brianna Meyers at Boka in Lincoln Park said that in their nearly 10 years in the restaurant business, they have never been party to a nearly $2,000 tip. “There was no secret menu that got us that money,”  Graham said. […]

  • Video released of fiery crash that killed 67-year-old woman near CTA bus shelter

    CHICAGO — Surveillance video was released of a fiery crash that killed a 67-year-old woman. Surveillance cameras at the Buddy Bear Car Wash on the corner of 95th Street and Stony Island Avenue captured dramatic video of the crash that killed Janice Gilmore, 67, around 6 p.m. on Tuesday. In the video, you see the white BMW speeding north on Stony Island then debris flying everywhere. A second angle of the crash shows a gray Chevy turning from 95th Street on […]

  • Infant safe after being left in baby box near Michigan City

    MICHIGAN CITY, Ind. — It was just five months ago that a newborn was left in a Save Haven baby box near Michigan City, IN, and it happened again Sunday night. “It’s a mixture of every emotion you can think of: excitement, happiness, a little sad,” said Lt. Chuck Kohler, Coolspring Township Fire Dept. They’re sad it came to this, but happy the newborn — who still had its umbilical cord attached — was in good shape. Lt. Kohler said […]

  • Ceremony in Memphis honors Martin Luther King Jr., 50 years after his death

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. —  Wednesday marks 50 years since the assassination of civil rights icon Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. King was shot and killed while standing on a balcony outside the Lorraine Motel in Memphis. He had traveled there for a sanitation workers strike. A commemorative ceremony marked it as a day of remembrance, celebration and looking back on King’s life and legacy. Among those who spoke was the Rev. Jesse Jackson, one of only two surviving members of King’s entourage on the […]

  • Who is Martin Luther King Jr. to us, 50 years later?

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee, 50 years ago on April 4, 1968, setting off a period of mourning, reflection and anger that gripped America. He was in Memphis to rally support for striking sanitation workers, who were protesting unsafe working conditions, and while on the balcony of his room at the Lorraine Motel (now the site of the National Civil Rights Museum), he was shot once and fatally by James Earl Ray, from the […]

  • Memphis readies for 50th anniversary of MLK death

    MEMPHIS — Wednesday marks the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Dr Martin Luther King Jr. The civil rights activist had traveled to Memphis in 1968 to support a workers strike and lead a peaceful march. He was with friends on the balcony of Lorraine Motel when he was shot and killed. Mason Temple was the sight of Dr. King’s final, and some say prophetic, speech the night before he was assassinated. A special service commemorating that night is planned […]

  • $8.5 billion O’Hare Airport expansion project cleared for takeoff

    CHICAGO — O’Hare Airport will soon undergo a major transformation. Chicago Aldermen approved a $4 billion bond issue to get construction going. The vote was 40 to 1. The project is estimated to ultimately cost $8.5 billion. The airlines will pay for it. The overhaul will double the airport’s size, and include more terminals and gates. The project is expected to create more than 60,000 jobs over the next eight years. Two minority caucuses introduced a special resolution that demands […]