Yesterday the Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA) honored work by NPR and a bundle of our member stations with Edward R. Murrow Awards, one of the highest recognitions for excellence in journalism.
Why the prestige? Since 1971, the RTDNA has considered award nominees' ability to live up to the legacy left by the late Edward R. Murrow.
Why Edward R. Murrow? An early pioneer of television broadcast journalism; Murrow joined CBS in 1935 and gained initial notoriety for his eyewitness reports on World War II for the network. In what can only be described as a simple twist of fate, CBS sent Murrow to London in 1937.
After Murrow caught word that Germany had annexed Austria at the hands of Adolf Hitler, he organized a team of journalists to report on the conflict as it expanded across Europe. Keep in mind that the presence of American broadcast journalists abroad was still minimal. While Murrow and his team (known as "Murrow's boys") were some of the first broadcast journalists to report back on the war, they were limited to filing their stories via radio broadcasts. Their broadcasts became Americans' primary source of news coming out of WWII and set the stage for Murrow to become an American icon. When he later took on Joseph McCarthy, standing up to the former Senator's anti-Communist crusade, Murrow solidified his legacy as a symbol of knowledge, freedom and hope for the future.
NPR Morning Edition host Steve Inskeep and the show's staff produced a three-part series from a Venezuelan prison, from which their reports of kidnapping, police corruption and a prison system in complete disarray put a human face on deadly statistics.
NPR investigative correspondent Howard Berkes and CPI reporter Jim Morris investigated a slew of horrific, and preventable, deaths of farm workers who "drowned" after becoming trapped in grain bins. The series points to OSHA's roll-back of related penalties and disturbing patterns in their enforcement.
Follow @NPRviz to stay up-to-speed on the team's latest digital innovations & offerings
Click around you - this very website (NPR.org) is a 2014 Murrow honoree.
The NPR Digital and Visuals teams are recognized for their efforts to expand the organization's digital presence and provide some of NPR's most intriguing stories with visual context.
Check out some of the projects and platforms made better by their work:
@KNAU, Flagstaff, AZ
The three-part series offers an in-depth look at the many ways that volunteers from Flagstaff, AZ, continue to help rebuild Haiti after a 2010 earthquake devastated the Caribbean nation.
@WCPN, Cleveland, OH
Five heart-wrenching profiles of "invisible" Americans who, despite having a job (or several), struggle to survive.
@WGBH, Boston, MA
WGBH News senior investigative reporter Phillip Martin traveled from Boston to New York to East Asia to explore the modern slave trade of human trafficking.
@WFPLNews, Louisville, KY
The investigation based in Louisville, KY, points to the story of Richard Carley Hooten, a six-time convicted felon who raped and strangled a 17-year-old woman, to spotlight holes in the state's legal system.
@NCPR, upstate NY
The member station serving upstate New York examines how 40 years of the Rockefeller Drug Laws' "tough on crime" policies have changed America.
@WUOTFM, Knoxville, TN
WUOT invites listeners into the lives of John, Bob, Rhonda, Annisa and Ron, who share their deeply personal experiences as HIV-positive.
@KALW, San Francisco, CA
After tracing the path of a 9-1-1 call in Oakland, KALW's Martina Castro and Ali Budner consider the effect of demographics and geography on the expediency of emergency services.
Reporting: Hard News
@WFAE, Charlotte, NC
Reporter Ben Bradford follows a day of protests in Raleigh led by the NAACP against policies coming from Governor Pat McCrory and North Carolina's Republican-dominated legislature. Approximately 80 of the 1,200 people who organized at the state capitol were arrested for civil disobedience.
@WITFnews, Harrisburg, PA
A seemingly random pile of dirt in Sunbury, PA, takes on new significance after its origin is traced back to a company with financial ties to Pennsylvania's governor.
Use of Sound/Video
@KQED, San Francisco, CA
Why do male elephant seals make loud noises during breeding season? To boost their reputation with lady elephant seals, of course.
@KUT, Austin, TX
The story of William Greer, a blind runner who, along with his sighted guide (Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me! host Peter Sagal), finished the 2013 Boston Marathon just minutes before multiple explosions ripped through the crowd waiting at the finish line.
@gpbnews, Atlanta, GA
Georgia Public Broadcasting's Adam Ragusea conveys the difficult process of discovering and reporting the facts of one man's death at the hands of a police officer.
A federal investigation into the deaths of 19 firefighters, who lost their lives fighting an 8,400-acre fire in Central Arizona, is at the center of ongoing reports on the tragedy.
Overall Excellence in Large Market Radio