The Los Angeles Sentinel is an African American-owned and operated newspaper and media company that places an emphasis on issues concerning the African American community and its readers. Since its controversial article in 1934, “Don’t Spend Where You Can’t Work,” the acclaimed and historic newspaper significantly influences the perceptions, attitudes, consciousness, and buying influence of its readership. For the last 90 years, the Sentinel has empowered a multitude through its unwavering mission of providing the Black community with “a voice speaking for itself.”

1933 Sentinel Staff
The first Los Angeles Sentinel staff, photo taken in 1933

The Sentinel was established in 1933 by Col. Leon H. Washington. Mrs.Ruth Washington, the wife of Col. Washington, remained the publisher until her death in 1990. The Thomases purchased the Sentinel in 1983. Attorney Kenneth R. Thomas was president and CEO from 1990-1997, and his wife, Jennifer Thomas, continued leading the company, serving as president and CEO from 1997-2004. They remained the owners until 2004, when it was purchased by Danny J. Bakewell, Sr, a civil rights advocate, powerful real estate developer, businessman, philanthropist, and the founder of the Taste of Soul festival.

Mr. Bakewell became the executive Publisher, Chairman, and CEO in March 2004. His son, Danny J. Bakewell, Jr., serves as the Executive Editor of the newspaper, and an organizer of Taste of Soul. During its existence, the LA Sentinel has been awarded hundreds of professional and community service awards and has been received as a member of all the nationally recognized newspaper publishing organizations. The Sentinel is a member of the National Newspaper Association, the National Newspaper Publishers Association, and the California Newspaper Publishers Association to name a few. The Sentinel is published weekly, every Thursday.

The company has evolved as a national and world news service and a top Black history resource. The historical archives are immersed with iconic Black stories, dating back from 1933 to the present. While the Sentinel continues to print its newspaper, the company has thoughtfully moved to digital, podcast, and social media platforms. One of the largest African American-owned newspaper in the U.S. continues to inform households across the US and beyond on vital topics pertaining to the Black experience.


  • The SENTINEL is the largest Subscriber paid African American owned newspaper on the West Coast with a readership of 150,000.
  • It is the only paid-circulation African American newspaper in Southern California.
  • The SENTINEL is a broadsheet newspaper with specifications conforming to S.A.U. Standards.
  • The Los Angeles Black consumer market is the second largest in the nation with income in excess of $20 billion annually. SENTINEL readers’ account for over $7 billion in annual income, making our readership one of the most lucrative target markets in the U.S. Our advertising rates are the most reasonable, especially when compared to other media. Our advertisers reach a large, loyal audience with a full-page cost of less than two cents per reader.
  • The SENTINEL has a documented history of over 90 years of service to the community. Supporting such civic organizations as: Brotherhood Crusade, Mothers In Action, Sabriya’s Castle of Fun Foundation, African American Unity Center, NAACP, American Red Cross, S.C.L.C., UNCF, Urban League, YMCA and the Religious Councils of all denominations.
  • The SENTINEL is recognized as an advertising medium of choice by over 60 National Advertisers including: Union Bank of California, Federal Express, Office Depot, Home Depot, Sony Pictures, 20th Century Fox, The Gas Company of Southern California, Calif. Public Utilities Comm., Department of Water & Power, Magic Johnson Enterprises, 7-Eleven Corp., Wells Fargo Bank, Washington Mutual, AT&T, IBM, Bank of America, Citibank, N.A., Merrill Lynch, State Farm Insurance Companies, AllState, Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A. Inc., Daimler-Chrysler Corporation, Nissan North America Inc., Macy’s, Robinson’s May, Marshalls, United States of America, Anheuser-Busch Companies, Coors Brewing Company, Burger King Corporation, Delta Airlines, Kodak, Ford Motor Co., General Foods, General Motors, K-Mart, Wal-Mart, Kraft, McDonalds, Miller Brewing Co., Public Broadcasting System, Nike, Honda, Raytheon, RJ Reynolds and United Airlines.


LARGEST african-american
1. New York $65.5 billion
2. California $53.1 billion
3. Texas $50.1 billion
4. Georgia $46.4 billion
5. Florida $40.9 billion
6. Maryland $38.8 billion
7. Illinois $37.8 billion
8. N. Carolina $31.0 billion
9. Virginia $29.0 billion
10. Michigan $28.7 billion
Top six expenditures in African American homes…
1. Housing – $145.2 billion
2. Food – $56.5 billion
3. Cars – $32.6 billion
4. Clothing – $23.0 billion
5. Health Care – $18.0 billion
6. Telephone – $14.4 billion