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KUNR Earns Several Awards For Local Journalism In 2019

KUNR Journalism News Awards 2019 and 2020. A collage of photos and illustrations from KUNR stories that have been recognized by the 2019 Associated Press Radio and Television Association for radio two division or 2020 regional Edward R. Murrow Awards.
Crystal Willis
KUNR Public Radio has received six 2020 Regional Edward R. Murrow Awards and has been named “Outstanding News Operation” for 2019 by the APTRA for the Radio II division, placing in eight categories.";s:

The KUNR newsroom has earned several awards from multiple contests for work produced by its reporters, editors, digital staff members, and student reporters in 2019. 

These stories would not be possible without the generous support of our community as well as our close partnership with the Reynolds School of Journalism at the University of Nevada, Reno. Many of the honorees were students or recent graduates of the Reynolds School when they filed these award-winning stories. 

KUNR Earns Six Regional Murrow Awards

Edward R. Murrow Awards 2020 logo. Illustration of a man wearing a collared shirt and tie.
Credit RTDNA

Theregional Edward R. Murrow Awards are decided by judges for the Radio Television Digital News Association. The contest honors “outstanding achievements in broadcast and digital journalism” according to the RTDNA website. Here are the categories KUNR won in the small market radio division:  

The downtown Reno arch in 1963, featuring a retro design with bright lights.
Credit Courtesy of the Western Nevada Photo Collection
Courtesy of the Western Nevada Photo Collection
The neon-free Reno Arch, which graced Virginia Street from 1963 to 1987, was featured in The Evolution Of The Famous Reno Arch by Alicia Barber. Barber's work has been recognized by the Edward R. Murrow Awards in two 2020 categories: Best in Innovation and News Series.

KUNR Named “Outstanding News Operation” By APTRA For Radio II Division

Associated Press logo. The letters A and P.
Credit Associated Press
Associated Press

The Associated Press Television and Radio Association broadcast contest highlighted KUNR as “Outstanding News Operation” in 2019 for the Radio II division. KUNR reporters were also honored in several specific categories:

A woman is taking a photograph with a phone during a women's march. She's standing in the street and wearing headphones while holding a microphone and a recorder.
Credit Courtesy of Lucia Starbuck
KUNR Reporter Lucia Starbuck is donning her gear during a community event on January 18, 2020, in Reno, Nev. Starbuck contributed to KUNR's coverage of hateful expressions at the University of Nevada, Reno along with KUNR's coverage of the 100th anniversary of the Reno Rodeo.

  • Best Sports Coverage (first place) for Spurs & Mud: A Century of Rodeo. This series includes reporting by Holly Hutchings, Lucia Starbuck and Bree Zender. Michelle Matus was digital editor and Michelle Billman was managing editor. 
  • Best Continuing Coverage (first place) for Hateful Expressions at the University of Nevada, Reno. This content was reported and produced by: Stephanie Serrano, Paul Boger, Andrew Mendez and Lucia Starbuck. Andrew’s work was in collaboration with Noticiero Móvil. Michelle Billman was managing editor.
  • Best Reporter (first place) is Anh Gray.
  • Best Reporter (second place) is Paul Boger.
  • Best Anchor (second place) is Bree Zender.
  • Best Digital Presence (second place) for KUNR.org. Michelle Matus was digital editor.
  • Best Sports Feature Story (second place) for Division 1 Athlete and Type 1 Diabetic: The Pack’s Trey Porter by Stephanie Serrano. 
  • Best Enterprise Reporting (second place) for Sparked: Northern Nevada’s Neon. For this series: Holly Hutchings was lead reporter; Krysta Scripter, Jana Sayson, and Lauren Bain were digital reporters; Alicia Barber was a contributor; Michelle Matus was digital editor and Michelle Billman was managing editor.

KUNR and Noticiero Móvil Student Reporter Wins National Gracie Award

The Gracies logo. Font logo with the following text. The Gracies presented by the the Alliance for Women in Media.
Credit The Alliance for Women in Media
The Alliance for Women in Media

Karina Gonzalez has earned a national Gracie Award in the Radio Interview Feature student category from the Alliance for Women in Media Foundation for her story A Mother Reflects On Her Daughter’s Suicide. Karina produced the audio story along with https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9OjGpTdu_Nk" target="_self">a video component for digital audiences while interning for both KUNR and Noticiero Móvil, a bilingual multimedia outlet run by the Reynolds School of Journalism. Karina received editorial guidance from Vanessa Vancour and Michelle Billman.

'Time & Place' Wins PMJA Award For Collaborative Effort

Public Media Journalists Association logo
Credit PMJA

The KUNR segment “Time & Place with Alicia Barber" has received a national first-place recognition from the Public Media Journalists Association in the “Collaborative Effort” category. 

These history segments were written, voiced, and produced by local historian Alicia Barber with editorial and technical support as needed from the KUNR news staff. Each segment incorporates sound bites from oral histories of people across the region that were recorded decades ago. That audio is provided by the Special Collections Department at the University of Nevada, Reno. 

An aged photograph of the first Reno Arch on Virginia Street.
Credit Courtesy of Special Collections, UNR Libraries
The Reno Arch erected in 1926 remained in place until 1963. This photo was featured in The Evolution Of The Famous Reno Arch by Alicia Barber.

“Alicia is a gifted storyteller who weaves oral history audio with detailed narration to share vivid vignettes of Reno and Northern Nevada’s past,” said KUNR News Director Michelle Billman. “Her collection makes oral history audio more accessible. Alicia has identified poignant sound bites from dense audio files in order to highlight key memories and moments in the region’s history.”

Along with sharing local history with KUNR listeners, Alicia’s segments have also been used by the Washoe County School District for various history lessons. You can explore the entire "Time & Place" collection here

Michelle Billman is a former news director at KUNR Public Radio.
Crystal Willis (she/her/hers) is a digital editor at KUNR Public Radio and manages the station’s digital offerings.
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