Pittsburgh’s NPR News Station Leads Statewide Radio In First Place Awards
April 11, 2018—PITTSBURGH, PA: Winners have been announced in the 2017 Pennsylvania Associated Press Media Editors contest. 90.5 WESA reporters and programs including The Allegheny Front won 11 awards in the Radio I category (Pittsburgh and Philadelphia), including seven first-place and four second-place awards; Philadelphia’s WHYY won five first-place awards, and Pittsburgh’s KDKA won two. Forty daily newspapers and 34 radio and television stations submitted 1,544 entries in the contest. The awards will be presented on June 1st in Gettysburg.
Reporters Kathleen Davis, Katie Blackley, Margaret J. Krauss, and Virginia Alvino Young won awards for spot news and feature reporting as well as use of sound. “We appreciate this recognition of the quality and breadth of work by WESA's talented reporters,” said News Director Patrick Doyle, adding, "We’re also proud that our collaborative series, Hidden Poison was recognized.” Hidden Poison covered public health issues connected to lead in water, paint and soil, and was a collaboration between WESA and its public-media partners, The Allegheny Front, PublicSource, and Keystone Crossroads.
The Allegheny Front, an environmental reporting project based at WESA, won awards for Investigative Reporting and Enterprise reporting by Reid Frazier and Julie Grant, and Best Public Service program.
"These awards attest to the importance of environmental reporting on a local level," said Kathy Knauer, the program’s Executive Producer. “For 27 years, The Allegheny Front has provided the community with a deeper understanding of the complex intersection of environmental issues with our health, the economy, technology, culture and quality of life here in western Pennsylvania."
General Manager John Sutton stated, "WESA has invested in delivering NPR-quality reporting to our listeners. These awards recognize that quality and our record-breaking audiences confirm the value of WESA's reporting to listeners through Southwestern PA.” Since January, WESA’s average audience for drive-time news is up 15% compared to the same period in 2017, according to Nielsen Audio.
Radio 1 Category Winners, 2017 Pennsylvania Associated Press Media Editors Contest
- Best Spot News Coverage: 1, Kathleen Davis, WESA-FM, Pittsburgh, Estranged Husband Kills Penn State Beaver Employee and Himself in Campus Parking Lot; 2, Katie Blackley, WESA-FM, Pittsburgh, Anti-Abortion Congressman Reportedly Asks Woman to Get an Abortion.
- Best Continuing Coverage: 1, Keystone Crossroads, WHYY-FM, Philadelphia, "PA Gerrymandering"; 2, Elana Gordon and Joel Patterson, WHYY-FM, Philadelphia, "Philly's Heroin Encampment."
- Best Series: 1, WESA-FM, Pittsburgh, Hidden Poison; 2, WHYY-FM, Philadelphia, "Life, Unauthorized."
- Best Investigative Reporting: 1, Reid Frazier, WESA-FM, Pittsburgh, The Allegheny Front: As in Flint, Cost Cutting May be to Blame for Pittsburgh's High Lead Levels; 2, Joe Hernandez, WHYY-FM, Philadelphia, "Agencies Have ‘Clawed Back’ More than $5 Million in Sandy Aid from New Jerseyans."
- Best Enterprise Reporting: 1, Julie Grant, WESA-FM, Pittsburgh, The Allegheny Front: From Coal Town to Trail Town; 2, Mary Cummings-Jordan and Kimberly Haas, WHYY-FM, Philadelphia, "Delaware Bay Towns 5 Years Post-Sandy."
- Best Public Service: 1, WESA-FM, Pittsburgh, The Allegheny Front; 2, Avi Wolfman-Arent, WHYY-FM, Philadelphia, "Cheltenham."
- Best Documentary: 1, Katie Colaneri, WHYY-FM, Philadelphia, "Redina's Story"; 2, WESA-FM, Pittsburgh, The Allegheny Front: Hazardous to Your Health.
- Best Feature: 1, Margaret J. Krauss, WESA-FM, Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh’s Steps are Unique Asset, with an Uncertain Future; 2, Katie Blackley, WESA-FM, Pittsburgh, Redd Up Your Pittsburghese: A Deep Dive into How Yinz Talk.
- Best Sports Feature: 1, Katie Blackley, WESA-FM, Pittsburgh, Pickleball is Becoming a Big Dill in Pittsburgh; 2, Jason Smith, WHYY-FM, Philadelphia, "NFL Draft Comes to Philly."
- Best Sportscast: 1, Jeff Hathhorn, KDKA-AM, Pittsburgh.
- Best Use of Sound: 1, Peter Crimmins, WHYY-FM, Philadelphia, "Symphony for a Broken Orchestra"; 2, Virginia Alvino Young, WESA-FM, Pittsburgh, From Ireland to the Hill District, One Drummer Hopes You Haven’t Forgotten Pittsburgh’s Jazz Greats.
- Best Regularly Scheduled News or Sports Talk Program: 1, KDKA-FM, Pittsburgh, "The Cook and Poni Show"; 2, WHYY-FM, Philadelphia, "The Pulse: Language."
- Best Reporter/Anchor: 1, Bobby Allyn, WHYY-FM, Philadelphia; 2, Laura Benshoff, WHYY-FM, Philadelphia.
- Best Newscast: 1, WHYY-FM, Philadelphia; 2, WHYY-FM, Philadelphia.