Vermont Public Radio Wins Five Regional Murrow Awards

04/04/08 9:00PM

Vermont Public Radio has been recognized with five top awards for excellence in broadcast journalism in the 2008 Regional Edward R. Murrow Awards contest, including an award for its comprehensive coverage of climate change.

The awards were announced April 4 in Marlborough, MA, by the Radio-Television News Directors Association.

VPR received five of 13 awards in the small market radio category that includes public and commercial radio stations in the six New England states. VPR won honors in categories of Continuing Coverage, Investigative Reporting, News Documentary, Broadcast Writing and Hard News Feature.

The Radio-Television News Directors Association has been honoring outstanding achievements in electronic journalism with the Edward R. Murrow Awards since 1971. Murrow Award recipients demonstrate the spirit of excellence that Edward R. Murrow made a standard for the broadcast news profession.

In the Continuing Coverage category, the VPR staff was honored for its 2007 series on "The Changing Climate." Thirteen representative stories were chosen for the entry, including stories on legislative initiatives, interviews with climate change experts, a Vermont Edition program on carbon offsets, a report on the maple industry and even a story on "Climate Change, The Musical."

VPR's John Dillon received the award for Investigative Reporting for his stories on the possible health effects of chloramine in municipal water supplies.

The documentary "Homeless in Vermont" received the award in the News Documentary category. It looked at the changing face of homelessness in Vermont, and the growing number of families and working poor who are in need of shelter. VPR visited with homeless war veterans, talked with shelter providers, and heard about the effort to address this troubling issue. The documentary was produced by Lynne McCrea, hosted by Neal Charnoff and it included reporting by Nina Keck.

For Broadcast Writing, this year's award went to VPR's Steve Zind for his report on one of the last groups of pigeon racers trying to keep the sport alive.

The issue of border-crossings was the focus of a sound-rich story by Charlotte Albright that was the recipient of the Feature/Hard News award. Albright took listeners through the streets of Derby Line, where the U.S. Border Patrol wanted to tighten security between Derby Line, Vermont and Stanstead, Quebec.

The award-winning pieces in the regional contest will now be entered into the national competition, which will be announced in October.

"These awards are a reflection of our listeners' desire for a strong regional news effort," said Vermont Public Radio President Mark Vogelzang. He went on to credit, "the excellent reporters and producers who work at VPR," for having earned these awards.

In 2007 VPR was the recipient of five regional and two national RTNDA Edward R. Murrow Awards.  Links to these and other past awards presented to Vermont Public Radio can be accessed at the Achievements page on VPR's web site.

 

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