ESPN has received four top honors in the 2016 National Edward R. Murrow Awards, the Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA) announced today. Celebrating its 45th anniversary, the awards annually recognize outstanding work produced by radio, television and online news organizations around the world.
In the network television division, ESPN received Murrow Awards for Investigative Reporting (its second, the only times a sports entry has won in the category), Feature Reporting and Sports Reporting. ESPN also received a Murrow Award in the network radio division for Feature Reporting.
“We’re honored and deeply grateful for this recognition of our passionate commitment to journalism,” said Rob King, ESPN senior vice president, SportsCenter and News, “and the inestimable value we place on supporting our journalists.”
ESPN’s winning entries included two for the prime time newsmagazine program E:60 (one for television and one for an E:60 report that aired on ESPN Radio), and two for SC Featured, the storytelling brand of ESPN’s signature news and information program SportsCenter.:
Investigative Reporting (network television) — E:60 “The Turf War.” ESPN examines the safety of crumb rubber on synthetic fields by talking to those who make it, those who have studied it, including an exclusive interview with the head of the EPA, and the people who play on it every day, all with one question in mind: Is turf safe?
Feature Reporting (network television) – SC Featured “The Courage Game,” the story of 12-year-old gay lacrosse player Braeden Lange, who connected with one of the sport’s trailblazers, Andrew Goldstein, a Dartmouth College lacrosse goalie and the first openly gay male athlete to play in an American professional sport league. Braeden, who was being bullied after coming out, received courage to go on after his father arranged for him to talk with Goldstein, the subject of a 10-year-old ESPN feature his father found online.
Sports Reporting (network television) — SC Featured “Miraculous.” A survivor of two separate plane crashes that killed family members and his pilot father, Indiana high school basketball star Austin Hatch realized his dream to play basketball for the University of Michigan after a long and difficult return from injuries.
Feature Reporting (network radio) — E:60 “Love is Stronger.” College baseball player Chris Singleton’s mother, Sharonda Coleman-Singleton, and eight others were shot and killed in the Charleston (S.C.) Emanuel AME church massacre, victims of a hate crime. The next night, Singleton was on his beloved baseball field, with a powerful message for the nation: “Love is stronger than hate.” Singleton speaks about a mother’s love, a night of horror and how baseball saved his life.
In its announcement, the RTDNA said it is presenting 103 national Edward R. Murrow Awards in 13 categories and received more than 4,300 entries during the 2016 awards season, setting an all-time record for the fourth year in a row. The winners will be recognized in New York City on Oct. 10.
RTDNA is the world’s largest professional organization devoted exclusively to electronic journalism. Founded as a grassroots organization in 1946, RTDNA works to protect the rights of electronic journalists throughout the country, promotes ethical standards in the industry, provides members with training and education and honors outstanding work in the profession through the Edward R. Murrow Awards.
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