The National Federation of Community Broadcasters recognized several public media leaders and stations during its annual conference July 17–19 in Denver.
Sue Schardt, CEO of the Association of Independents in Radio, received the Michael Bader Award for her longtime commitment to community media. A cofounder of AIR, Schardt also started the CPB-funded Localore project that embeds independent producers at public media stations to take creative approaches to storytelling and local reporting. The award is presented in memory of the late Michael Bader, an attorney and advocate for community radio.
Another video featured Schardt’s colleagues, who praised her for her leadership, vision, integrity and talent for making others feel included and welcomed.
In addition, Pat Fowler received the Volunteer of the Year award for her 30 years of volunteer service to WERU in Maine. In audio remarks played during the conference, Fowler thanked NFCB and said “I guess persistence and longevity sometimes pays off. No age bias in community radio.”
The Golden Torchlight award went to one-year-old low-power FM station WOWD in Takoma Park, Md., recognizing its community engagement and programming.
And NFCB’s Media Citizenship award went to Betty McArdle and Michael Brown of the Community Media Assistance Project, for their ongoing service to low-power FMs and community radio.
Asian American Journalists Association
AAJA recognized several public media journalists during its conference in Philadelphia July 26–29.
Julia B. Chan, director of audience at Mother Jones, and Scott Pham, a data journalist with Reveal at the Center for Investigative Reporting, received the Al Neuharth Award for Innovation in Investigative Journalism for Portraits of A Trump Supporter, a report for Reveal’s radio show accompanied by a web presentation. The award, a partnership of AAJA and the Gannett Foundation, recognizes groundbreaking work that creatively uses digital tools in watchdog journalism.
Published in January 2016, Chan and Pham’s work now “looks prophetic in the wake of the presidential election,” judges said. “The show took listeners to the scene of Trump rallies and explored the mindset of his supporters, including their fears and values.”
So honored to win #AAJA17's Al Neuharth Award for Innovation in Investigative Journalism! @scottpham and I made a pretty good team @reveal ???? pic.twitter.com/eRLG1tA6zT
— Julia B. Chan (@juliachanb) July 30, 2017
National Journalism awards for General Excellence went to freelance journalist Alexa Oleson, recognized in the category of written journalism for The Panama Papers: Leaked Files Offer Many Clues To Offshore Dealings by Top Chinese, published by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists and Germany newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung. Oleson’s reporting found that several of the country’s top decision-makers have relatives with secret offshore companies.
In radio/audio, Liz Jones, Ruby de Luna, Amina Al-Sadi, Kate Walters, Isolde Raftery, Carol Smith and Whitney Henry-Lester at KUOW in Seattle won for “If these walls could talk, the stories they would tell.” The piece chronicled the history of a century-old home and its owners.
Ryan Yamamoto, Suzanne Phan and David Hosley won in television/online for Arnold Knows Me: The Tony Kono Story, a film about the decorated American weightlifter that aired on ViewFinder. The public TV series is presented by KVIE in Sacramento, Calif.
And Molly Solomon won in radio/audio for her story “Sugar plantation closure marks end of a way of life in Hawaii,” which aired on American Public Media’s Marketplace.
Global Editors Network
Three public and nonprofit media organizations received 2017 Data Journalism Awards at the Global Editors Network Summit June 22 at Hofburg Palace in Vienna, Austria. Twelve winners were chosen from 63 finalists.
The News Data App of the Year award went to ProPublica and The Electionland Coalition for creating an “organisational marvel, orchestrating 1,100 journalists in the real-time collaborative coverage of the 2016 US elections.” The project followed reports of election problems nationally. It was recognized for setting a “new high water mark for the use of technology in election coverage due to its use of sophisticated data capture pipelines to augment human verification and judgment calls.”
The Chartbeat award for the best use of data in a breaking news story within the first 36 hours went to NPR for “Fact Check: Trump And Clinton Debate For The First Time.” “The outlet verified, criticised or enriched on candidates’ points in a way that marshalled data and facts,” the awards jury said. “It shows how journalism’s ethos for truth can be embedded into code to create a new way to present news events with responsible criticism just alongside it.”
One of two small newsroom awards went to The Marshall Project for “Crime in Context.” After gathering and analyzing 40 years of data about U.S. violent crime, the nonprofit found that violence in U.S. cities is at a historic low.
“The analysis, which clearly refutes President Trump’s dystopian claims about crime in the U.S., was presented using interactive fever charts that invite exploration and easy comparison by readers,” according to the jury. “The engaging package is a powerful demonstration of the value of applying the evidence of data against assertions made for political gain.”