WFAE Wins Two Regional Murrow Awards, Including Overall Excellence
The Radio Television Digital News Association recognized WFAE 90.7fm with two awards, including Overall Excellence, in its regional Edward R. Murrow Awards competition for electronic journalism. WFAE also ranked first among large market stations in the Breaking News category.
The Overall Excellence award reflects the depth and scope of a news organization. WFAE’s winning entry represents a sampling of the station’s diverse news coverage throughout 2015:
Non-discrimination expansion rejected by Charlotte City Council; the backlash the Ritz-Carlton received for its ‘black tax’ during the CIAA tournament; South Carolina lawmakers vote to take down Confederate flag; the virtual monitoring of ICU patients; protesters’ and police plans for activism after the Randall Kerrick mistrial; a state ethics commission ruling that says sex with a lobbyist is not a ‘thing of value’; HBCUs’ efforts to compete for students; and remembering Dean Smith.
“Excellence in journalism is the necessary ingredient in any healthy democracy,” said Joe O’Connor, WFAE president and general manager. “I am so proud that WFAE’s newsroom is once again being recognized for its exceptional work on a daily basis and for its remarkable coverage of the Randall Kerrick Trial.”
WFAE’s “Randall Kerrick Hung Jury” won in the Breaking News category. The entry included live special coverage as soon as the mistrial was declared, and stories that were produced that evening. Hosted by WFAE reporters Tom Bullock and Michael Tomsic, they interviewed legal experts and community leaders, while WFAE reporters Gwendolyn Glenn and Duncan McFadyen reported from inside and outside the courthouse. The follow-up stories produced that evening were packaged together in a segment anchored by McFadyen. The stories focused on the mistrial ruling and reaction (Glenn); reaction from the Fraternal Order of Police (Lisa Worf); churches that opened the evening of the mistrial (Sarah Delia), and the activism that took place that night (Bullock).
“What makes these awards awesome is they are truly team awards. Our breaking news coverage on the Randall Kerrick trial was truly the result of everyone working together, both on and off the air. It represents the best of substantive, informative and thought-provoking journalism. I’ve never been more proud of a newsroom than on that day,” said WFAE News Director Greg Collard. “But really, our journalists do incredible work every day on a diversity of topics. The Overall Excellence award is a reflection of that.”
WFAE competes in a region that’s comprised of stations in North Carolina, South Carolina, Kentucky, Tennessee and West Virginia. Regional winners automatically become eligible for the national awards competition, which will be judged in June.