Dean Richards is WGN-TV’s Emmy Award-winning entertainment reporter and critic. His work is seen and heard on several Tribune Media-owned properties and he was cited in a New York Times front-page article as “Tribune Company’s Man of Many Hats.”

Dean joined WGN-TV as a staff announcer in 1991. In 1998, he appeared as a guest reviewer and was brought onboard as a regular contributor soon after. His interviews with national and local celebrities, reports on showbiz and reviews of the latest movies are seen on WGN’s newscasts, including “WGN Morning News” and “WGN Midday News.” He has also hosted and co-produced specials such as the award-winning “Bozo, Gar & Ray: WGN TV Classics,” the Oscar preview special “The Envelope Please,” “Stories of Hope: Facing Breast Cancer,” “Unforgettable: Living with Alzheimer’s” and “Chicago’s Summer Blast.” Dean has also contributed to national cable channel WGN America, classic TV network Antenna TV, the Chicago Tribune and RedEye. In 2016, he was inducted into the Chicago Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences’ Silver Circle, and in 2017, he was honored with the Chicago International Television Festival’s Chicago Award.

On WGN Radio (720 AM), “Dean Richards’ Sunday Morning” covers Chicago’s entertainment and lifestyle scene including movies, theater, food and dining, Sundays from 9am-1pm. Dean’s entertainment reports and reviews can also be heard on “The Steve Cochran Show” weekdays at 8:10am and “The Bill & Wendy Show” Thursdays at 11:35am. Since joining WGN Radio in 1994, he has won over 30 local and national awards for programming and production, including the Peter Lisagor Award for Outstanding Journalism, the Associated Press Best Feature of the Year, the Illinois Broadcasters Association, UPI, Chicago A.I.R. Awards, and Promax International Promotion and Marketing Awards. In 2016, Dean was enshrined with a bronze plaque on The WGN Radio Walk of Fame, which honors the station’s legendary talent, outside its Tribune Tower showcase studio on Michigan Avenue.

Dean’s annual radio and television specials on the fight against breast cancer have also garnered many national and local awards and citations from breast cancer organizations, including the “Y-ME” National Breast Cancer Organization’s “Outstanding Media” Award, for their contributions to the fight against the disease.

On and off the air, Dean has been a tireless worker related to HIV/AIDS issues, hosting charitable functions for decades including “AIDS Run & Walk Chicago” and “Dance for Life Chicago.” He has lent support to numerous organizations including Howard Brown Health Center, Horizons Community Services (now Center on Halsted), Open Hand Chicago, and was awarded a citation by Stop AIDS Chicago for his contributions to the fight against AIDS. The AIDS Foundation of Chicago also recognized him in their annual “Faces of AIDS” publication for bringing HIV/AIDS issues to mainstream media and, in 2006, cited him with a special commendation for his work in the field.

For over 25 years, Dean was part of the Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon benefitting the Muscular Dystrophy Association, many of those years as the telethon’s co-host on WGN-TV. He has also hosted numerous events for hunger, homeless, and domestic violence organizations.

A native of Chicago, Dean worked his way through a string of suburban Chicago radio stations after completing his Broadcast Communications/Marketing degree at Columbia College. A veteran of the Chicago’s broadcasting scene since 1975, he has worked at WNUA, WCLR, WIND, WCFL, WFYR, WPWR and WFLD. He also hosted a nationally-syndicated morning radio program for the ABC Radio Network, while also acting as its Operations Manager.

Recent Articles
  • 4-day Lollapalooza passes on sale Tuesday

    CHICAGO — Four-day general admission tickets for Lollapalooza go on sale starting at 10 a.m. Tuesday. The passes cost $340, plus taxes and fees through A layaway plan will be available this year to pay for your tickets in multiple installments. The four-day Lollapalooza Festival will run from August 1-4 in Chicago’s Grant Park. Single-day tickets are not for sale yet, but are “coming soon,” according to the official Lollapalooza website. The line-up for this year’s festival has not […]

  • Netflix drops Lori Loughlin from ‘Fuller House’

    Lori Loughlin’s character “Aunt Becky” has not been written into the fifth season of “Fuller House.” According to the Hollywood Reporter, Netflix has dropped the actress in the wake of the college admissions bribery scandal. The Hallmark Channel has already cut ties with Loughlin. She and her husband, fashion designer Mossimo Giannulli, are charged with paying $500,000 to help get their daughters into the University of Southern California.  

  • Dean’s Reviews: ‘Gloria Bell’ and ‘Wonder Park’

    Dean Richards reviews ‘Gloria Bell’ and ‘Wonder Park’ opening in theaters this weekend.

  • Ravinia Festival announces 2019 lineup

    HIGHLAND PARK, Ill. –Ravinia has announced its lineup for the 2019 summer season. The festival will run from May 31 through Sept. 15 this year and will feature more than 140 performers and special events. Some highlights this year include Sting, Chicago, Lionel Richie, Kesha, Queen Latifah, Common, Nickelback, Sugarland, Little Big Town, Tony Bennett — among many more. President and CEO of Ravinia Welz Kaufman joined WGN Morning News Thursday to reveal this season’s performers. CLICK HERE: FULL RAVINIA […]

  • PHOTOS: Chance The Rapper marries longtime girlfriend Kirsten Corley

    NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. — Chance The Rapper is now a married man. He and his longtime girlfriend Kirsten Corley had their wedding in Newport Beach, Calif., on Saturday. Kim Kardashian, Kanye West and and comedian Dave Chappelle were among the guests. Photos shared on social media Monday show Chance in a white tux and his bride in a strapless gown with a long, flowing veil. The Bennetts — Chance Owbum 📅 (@chancetherapper) March 11, 2019 View this post on […]

  • Marshall Brodien, who played ‘Wizzo the Wizard’ on The Bozo Show, has died

    GENEVA, Ill. — Marshall Brodien, who played “Wizzo the Wizard” on WGN TV’s Bozo Show for 26 years, has died. He was 84-years-old. Word from his wife, Mary, is that he passed away after a long battle with Alzheimer’s at Arden Courts of Geneva, where he lived for the past five years. Brodien was first diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2007. He was one of the most beloved characters in the history of Chicago children’s television, playing the magical wizard known […]

  • Dean’s Review: ‘Captain Marvel’

  • ‘Frozen’ Broadway musical coming to Chicago in 2020

    CHICAGO — The Broadway musical “Frozen is coming to Chicago! Disney Theatricals announced Tuesday that the first national touring production of the hit musical will arrive in the city’s Loop in 2020. “Frozen” will play an 11-week run at the Cadillac Palace Theatre from Oct. 21, 2020 through Jan. 2, 2021. Groups tickets are currently available at or by calling (312) 977-1710. Individual tickets will go on-sale at a later date.

  • Luke Perry dies at 52 after suffering massive stroke

    BURBANK. Calif — Actor Luke Perry has died after suffering a massive stroke last week, according to his publicist. Perry reportedly passed away Monday morning at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Burbank, surrounded by his children, family and friends. The 52-year-old was rushed to the hospital early Wednesday morning after having a stroke at his Sherman Oaks home. Perry’s reps told TMZ his doctors had sedated him in hopes of giving his brain a chance to recover from the stroke, but […]

  • ‘Leaving Neverland’ documentary sparks re-examination of Michael’s Jackson’s legacy

    Part one of HBO’s “Leaving Neverland” aired Sunday, and viewers heard graphic accounts of two men who accused Michael Jackson of sexually abusing them when they were children. The four-hour documentary examines the molestation accusations of two men — Wade Robson and James Safechuck — against Jackson, who died in 2009. Robson and Safechuck, now 41 and 37 respectively, allege the years of sexual abuse took place in the late ’80s and early ’90s. The Jackson estate called the film a “public […]

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