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Julio Ricardo Varela

Julio Ricardo Varela

Editorial Director & Co-Interim Executive Director of Futuro Media & Founder of Latino Rebels


As Editorial Director for Futuro Media, Julio (Julito) Ricardo Varela is responsible for the overall editorial vision and voice of Latino USA, Latino Rebels and In The Thick. As Vice President of New Business Development for Futuro Studios, he also heads up the division’s new business initiatives, which have received industry accolades and have positioned Futuro for continued, sustainable success. Read More >

In 2011, Julio founded Latino Rebels, one of the top U.S. Latino digital media sites in the world. In 2018, LR officially joined the Futuro Media family. He also co-hosts In The Thick with Maria Hinojosa. He is a frequent contributor to Latino USA, and as Digital Director for Futuro from 2015–2020, Julio expanded the show’s digital footprint, overseeing historic gains in online and social audiences.

Previously, Julio was Digital Producer for Al Jazeera America’s “The Stream” and his work has been featured in many global outlets, including The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Atlantic, The Guardian, ESPN, NBC News, Quartz, Le Monde, WGBH, WNYC, Face the Nation, MSNBC, Fusion, Univision and Telemundo. He has made numerous national TV appearances for Latino USA and Futuro Media.

In 2015, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists honored Julio with its inaugural DALE (pronounced like Pitbull would say it) Award, given to “given to an individual or company that steps up and goes above and beyond to ensure Latinos are fairly and accurately represented.” A native of Puerto Rico, Julio spent his childhood between San Juan and the Bronx. He was also a contributing reporter at The Boston Globe and a top publishing executive. Julio graduated cum laude from Harvard College. Read Less ^

Speaker Videos

Julio Ricardo Varela on the #ParoNacional

Why Journalism: Julio Ricardo Varela

Speech Topics

A First Hand Account: The Crisis at the Border

Julio Ricardo Varela’s many years covering issues and events directly impacting the Latino, Hispanic and Latinx communities have positioned him as one of the leading voices when addressing the “Crisis at the Border.” With the Trump administration presiding over the largest flows of migration at the U.S.-Mexico border since the mid-2000s, the Biden Administration is tasked with tackling one of America’s most pressing issues that has no sign of slowing down or going away. In this inspiring keynote, Julio Ricardo Varela tackles the stories from the border that the mainstream media tends to ignore, and shares the latest firsthand accounts of those battling one of the country's most misunderstood and misinformed issues.