WKU Public Radio, Student Broadcasters, Earn State Honors
- WKU News
- Wednesday, June 9th, 2021
WKYU-FM, Western Kentucky University’s public radio service, received the station’s first ever Overall Excellence Award in Radio from the Kentucky Broadcasters Association.
WKYU-FM received 13 awards, including five top finishes, in the 2020 Impact Broadcast Awards (formerly the Kentucky AP Awards) earlier this week. In addition, several WKU students were honored in the collegiate television and radio competitions.
“I can’t describe how proud I am of our local news team,” News Director Kevin Willis said. “The vast majority of the work that won these awards was produced during the pandemic. Some reporters were working exclusively from home, and COVID-19 safety precautions provided a lot of challenges in how we covered the news and recorded interviews. Despite those challenges, we were able to put together quality local news at a time when it was needed the most.”
Willis said he was especially proud of the first-ever win in the category of Overall Excellence. “Radio stations from across the state are eligible for these awards, including public and commercial stations, and stations in large cities and small towns,” he said. “Winning the Overall Excellence award is a special honor, and takes into account the best work a station did across the entire year.”
In addition to the Overall Excellence award, first-place honors include: Best Radio Reporter: Rhonda Miller; Enterprise Reporting: Colin Jackson; Sports Feature/Special: Lisa Autry; and Long Serious News Feature: Lisa Autry.
Second-place honors include: Best Radio Reporter: Lisa Autry; Digital Coverage: Becca Schimmel; Enterprise Reporting: Lisa Autry; Continuing Coverage: Lisa Autry; Sports Feature/Special: Colin Jackson; and Light News Feature: Rhonda Miller.
Third-place honors include: Light News Feature: Rhonda Miller, and Long Public Affairs: Rhonda Miller.
“I’m also proud that three different reporters won first-place awards,” Willis said. “There are a lot of great radio stations and radio journalist across Kentucky, and being named the best in something means a great deal.”
In the College TV contest, WKU students won first-place honors in Public Affairs (Jazzlin Hamilton), Sports Coverage (Olivia Hardin and Nick Brake), News Story (Ashton Jones), Television Reporter (Ashton Jones), Digital Journalist (Olivia Eiler) and Newscast (Jenna Kleine-Kracht and Jillian Ryan).
They won second-place honors in Website, News Story (Ashton Jones) and Feature Story (Carley Stone) and third-place awards in Feature Story (Jeanna Kleine-Kracht) and Public Affairs (Olivia Eiler).
In the College Radio contest, Redzone won first and second in Sports Coverage and second (Claire Dugan) and third (Lauren Tashjin) in Newscast.
For information, contact Kevin Willis at (270) 745-8819.