Staff members of WKSU-FM, Kent State University’s award-winning NPR affiliate, were honored with seven Ohio Associated Press Broadcasters (OAPB) Awards, including Best Reporter, at a luncheon ceremony on June 6 at the Hilton Columbus at Easton. The event also recognized new inductees into the Ohio Associated Press Broadcasters Hall of Fame, presenting Kent State alumnus Dick Goddard with the Carl Day Outstanding Achievement Award and a keynote address from journalist Jon Belmont. Winners of Regional Edward R. Murrow Awards from Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA) also were acknowledged. WKSU-FM competed in the Large Market division with other commercial and non-commercial radio operations in major Ohio media markets, including Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati, and the Ohio News Network.
WKSU-FM reporter/producer Vivian Goodman was recognized as Best Reporter in Ohio – Large Market for the second time by OAPB, repeating her win in 2006. The award reflects the high quality of Goodman’s body of work produced during 2009. Along with reporting, Goodman hosts afternoon news on WKSU-FM, including NPR’s “All Things Considered.”
Goodman also took home a first-place OAPB Award for Best Enterprise Reporting for “Father and Son Songwriters,” a story that put a twist on the economic crisis. Judges said, “Hurray! Music EARLY in the piece! Compelling and well done.”
WKSU-FM News Director M.L. Schultze took home a first-place award for Best Breaking News Coverage for her reports surrounding basketball star LeBron James being named NBA MVP. Reporter/producer Tim Rudell picked up the second-place award in the same category for his story on the closing of the Twinsburg Stamping Plant as part of Chrysler’s restructuring plan.
WKSU-FM’s fourth first-place award went to an unusual piece by Program Director Mark Urycki. In response to an article in the New York Times, he followed a path described in the book “Travel Smart: Ohio.” His audio travelogue, which started on the Towpath Trail and ended at Blossom Music Center, was recognized as Best Use of Sound. The judges remarked that “rather than a totally scripted piece, Mark Urycki provided a narrative with humor and feeling. He really takes us there, in a most unconventional way.”
Morning News Host Jeff St. Clair received two second-place awards, one for his anchor duties during NPR’s “Morning Edition” and a second for his feature “A Wizard a True Star.” In the piece, St. Clair speaks with rock legend Todd Rundgren about his plans to recreate one of his albums on the stage of the Akron Civic Theatre. The judges said the report was a “Great look at one of rock’s great creative minds!”
The OAPB aims to advance the profession of journalism, to cooperate with the Associated Press in the exchange of accurate, impartial news reports and to serve as liaison between the Associated Press and its members. There were more than 300 entries in this year’s contest.
WKSU-FM broadcasts NPR and classical music at 89.7 FM, and is a service of Kent State University. WKSU-FM programming is also heard on WKRW 89.3 FM in Wooster, WKRJ 91.5 FM in Dover/New Philadelphia, WKSV 89.1 FM in Thompson, WNRK 90.7 in Norwalk, W298BA 107.5 FM in Boardman, and W239AZ 95.7 FM in Ashland. The station broadcasts four HD Radio channels – adding WKSU-2 Folk Alley, WKSU-3 The Classical Channel and WKSU-4 The News Channel to the analog broadcast schedule. The Classical Channel also can be heard in Cleveland at 107.3 HD-3. The WKSU-FM website is www.wksu.org.