Podcasts from public radio stations in Vermont and Chicago, and television stations in Roanoke, VA, and Milwaukee were among the winners of the 2021 National Edward R. Murrow Awards. The Radio Television Digital News Association-sponsored awards recognized more than 100 outlets for outstanding work in digital, radio and television journalism in technical and editorial categories.
The podcast winners include Vermont Public Radio, which won best podcast from small market radio for its series Brave Little State. What if you could decide what stories Vermont Public Radio should be covering, before they're even assigned? That's the idea behind Brave Little State.
WBEZ Chicago won best podcast from large market radio for the third season of its podcast Motive. It examined the origins of the youth white supremacist movement in America.
The Murrow winner from network radio is American Rehab. The series from The Center for Investigative Reporting and PRX exposed how a treatment for drug addiction has turned tens of thousands of people into an unpaid, shadow workforce.
Local television news teams have also embraced podcasting and a pair of TV outlets is also being recognized by the RTDNA. In the small market television category, WDBJ-TV Roanoke-Lynchburg, VA won for its series Hometown Stories Episode 4: Great American Outdoors Act. It looked at whatthe Great American Outdoors Act has meant for the region.
WITI-TV Milwaukee was named the winner in the large market television category for its podcast Open Record.
In the network television category, the podcast I’m Not A Monster took the Murrow. It told the story of an American family’s journey from Indiana to the Islamic State group’s caliphate and back.
Among the digital news organizations, Birmingham-based Alabama Media Group won a Murrow for its podcast Reckon Radio: Unjustifiable. Each season of Reckon Radio tells one in-depth story with Southern roots. The Unjustifiable season examined the 1979 police officer shooting of a Birmingham woman.
In the large digital news organization category, the winner is the Washington Post’s podcast Canary: The Washington Post Investigates. It tells the story of how one woman’s public sexual assault warning gives voice to a devastating allegation.
The RTDNA also selected one national student winner. It gave its excellence in podcasting prize to Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism for Kids Imprisoned Episode 1: The ununited state of juvenile justice. It examines how kids in the juvenile justice system have dramatically different outcomes based on the laws in the places they live and the adults who happen to be involved in their cases.
"A core pillar of RTDNA is celebrating the best in journalism," RTDNA Executive Director Dan Shelley said in the announcement. "The past 18 months have been some of the most challenging in the history of our profession, and these recipients — among thousands of other journalists — clearly fulfilled their obligations to serve the public."
Winners will be recognized at RTDNA's Murrow Awards Gala in New York on Oct. 27. A full list of winners can be viewed HERE.