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Hi! I'm Julian Hayda.

I am an award-winning journalist and community convener who works on projects relating to Eastern Europe, race, gender, religion, and identity. I'm a lifelong Chicagoan, bred in the local Ukrainian-American community.

I am currently the coordinating producer for NPR's operations in Ukraine. This means that I manage logistics for a team of as many as thirty correspondents, producers, interpreters, security advisers, and drivers, working together to achieve the network's editorial goals. I also prepare daily news briefs, work on breaking news, report for the hourly newscast, and contribute to NPR's digital coverage. Occasionally I report long-form feature stories on culture, history, and identity for NPR's news magazine shows.

Before coming to NPR I moved to Ukraine with my wife to study religion and work as a freelance journalist. I also spent much of 2021 and 2022 working in the area of online human rights and free speech as a Newmark Journalist Scholar at the Global Cyber Alliance. 


I have more than a decade of on-air and off-air editorial experience, working for multiple public media stations. I hosted conversations on WUWM, Milwaukee's NPR, and worked as an engagement strategist at Illinois Newsroom, the public media collaborative run by Illinois Public Media and hosted by the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana.


From 2016-2019, I was a producer for a daily global issues talk show called Worldview on WBEZ, Chicago Public Radio. Before being a producer there, I was a regular guest and commentator on Ukraine.

I directed a feature documentary titled Block Four: Chernobyl 2011 and produced news segments surrounding deposed Ukrainian president Yanukovych’s participation in the 2012 NATO Summit among other short documentaries. I also participated in research projects on Romani music, culture, and human rights with the University of Pittsburgh in the Czech Republic, Poland, and Slovakia, and completed a seminar in International Law with the DePaul University Law School at the University of Havana in Cuba.

​In 2013, my friends and I founded a youth-run non-profit called the Group for Tomorrow's Ukraine (originally titled the Euromaidan Journalist Collective), whose mission went from reporting on the 2013-2014 Euromaidan Revolution in Ukraine to providing analysis for the subsequent crisis there.

I've presented on Ukraine at the University of Chicago's Booth School of Business, Fordham University, Stanford University, the DePaul University School of Law, as well as at other conferences around the United States. I'm also a member of the Kyiv Committee of Chicago Sister Cities International.


Robert D.G. Lewis First Amendment Award for Excellence in Journalism

September 2015

Society of Professional Journalists

The Society of Professional Journalists presents this award at its annual convention to a student member who has demonstrated outstanding service to the First Amendment through the field of journalism.

Pinnacle Award for Best Profile Writing, Finalist

November 2015

College Media Association

Pinnacle Awards honor the best college media organizations and individual work. DePaul University's weekly student newspaper, the DePaulia, was a finalist in the category for best profile writing for Julian Hayda's profile of Ukrainian Finance Minister Natalie Jaresko. The story was awarded third place among all of the national nominees.

First Place Award for Online Multimedia

June 2016

Catholic Press Association of the United States and Canada

First place award for the short video “Adjunct Agony: Uncertainty for part-time professors at DePaul” by Emily Brosious, ’15, Matt Koske, ‘17 and Julian Hayda, ’15. Judges’ comments: “A compelling story that should interest students as they learn and as they prepare for career. The graphic effectively plotted the rise in the number of adjunct professors, the text told the full story and the video added emotion and expression to the whole story. The interviews that made up the videos were very well produced. The voices were clear, the locations held the viewers interest and the views expressed were elaborated on in the text. A very good example of informed and research investigative journalism.”

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