Multimedia journalist brings her experience to the team

(Photo courtesy of Eugene Tapahe, Tapahe Photography)

Indian Country Today

‘There’s no better opportunity to give back to my Native community’

Carina Dominguez is hitting the ground running as she joins the Indian Country Today newsroom as a correspondent.

Her first day on the job was April 6, the same day Indian Country Today launched its first ever 30-minute weekday newscast.

“Joining Indian Country Today to do something that’s never been done before,” she says excites her. “There’s no better opportunity to give back to my Native community and other Native communities.”

“Carina, like the rest of us, is eager to provide a newscast that caters to Indian Country,” said Patty Talahongva, executive producer.

Mark Trahant, editor of Indian Country Today, looks forward to this expansion of the broadcast team.

“I am delighted that Carina will help us create a news broadcast that sets high standards,” he said. “She brings to our newsroom (even if virtual right now) her rich experiences and a passion for serving Native communities.”

Dominguez is Pascua Yaqui, born in Tucson, Arizona, and raised on the Pascua Yaqui Indian reservation near Tucson.

She’s been interested and involved in journalism since high school where she worked on her school newspaper. Back then she was interested in sports.

“I noticed there was a lack of Native American representation in the media,” she says.

“I was in high school when I realized this.” She decided to do something about it. “It’s probably a good idea to join the field.”

She applied to Arizona State University and got accepted into the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication.

“Cronkite taught me a lot,” she recalls. “This [business] is non-stop. Sometimes this work is very hard and can be draining. Expect long hours, and physical work, not just emotionally and mentally.”

She learned just how physically demanding the work can be when she was hired on by the Pac 12 Network as a student worker. Dominguez helped lug and set up all the heavy sideline cameras to cover basketball, baseball, softball and track and field events. “That’s when I got my first live production experience.” She even operated the cameras.

“It’s hard work and you really need to be passionate about it,” Dominguez said.

While at ASU, she also wrote for the college paper, the State Press. She went back to sports as a multimedia sports reporter and produced documentary style sports features for the website.

“She can shoot her own stories, write, edit and report. She does it all. We are pleased to have her join our team,” Talahongva says.

“It’s pretty neat,” Dominguez says of all the opportunities Cronkite afforded her including getting an internship with CBS News in New York. She graduated in 2015 after earning her bachelor’s degree in broadcast journalism and then she was off to the Big Apple.

Dominguez was at CBS for nearly three years.

Her internship included housing. She went to work for the investigative unit for CBS News. At the time Dennis Hastert, speaker of the House or Representatives, was in the middle of a sexual abuse investigation involving teen boys at a high school in Illinois where he once coached. He was a wrestling coach and the victims were on his team.

Her job was to help find information, research and fact check this story that ultimately took down a long-serving politician.

She also worked as a Page for CBS News and had a glimpse into the business side of news. Dominguez even had a chance to work on the Late Show with Stephen Colbert which is shot in the famed Ed Sullivan Theater.

Her experience in news at CBS included work on the CBS Sunday Morning program. “I also helped with the evening news and the weekend newscasts.”

In 2018 she returned to Arizona and worked, for a time, at a local television station.

She’s now back in broadcasting as part of the Indian Country Today staff.

“This is literally the most perfect opportunity,” she says of joining Indian Country Today. “Nothing I could imagine doing that could be more fulfilling than this.”

Like the rest of the staff she is working from home in Tucson. Once the newsroom reopens Dominguez will be based in Phoenix. She has a three-year-old daughter. Her name is Talia. 

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