Llorente graduated from University of Missouri in 1984 with a Bachelor's degree in journalism. She received a certificate in video shooting and editing from Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism in 2010. 
Throughout her journalistic career, Llorente has profiled dozens of ethnic communities, and exposed abuse and corruption that have generated reforms at both the state and national levels. In 2003, the Annenberg Institute of the University of Southern Californianamed her one of the country’s top five race and ethnicity writers, and made her an Expert Fellow. 
Llorente has authored widely circulated tips on reporting about race and is a regular visiting lecturer at such institutions as Columbia University, the Poynter Institute, Rutgers University, and Baruch College. She has also spoken at Harvard University, Lehman College, and Princeton University.