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WITF recognized with two honors at national Edward R. Murrow Awards

Written by Crystal Stryker | Oct 11, 2016 11:30 AM

(New York) -- WITF has been honored at the 2016 National Edward R. Murrow Awards Gala in New York City on October 10. Ben Allen and Joe Ulrich received National Murrows in the Hard News Feature and the Best Use of Sound categories.

WITF Is the only station to receive multiple honors in its class. It has now garnered 12 National Murrows since 2007, the most of any media organization in the state over that time spans.

Presented by the Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA), the awards recognize the highest quality of journalism produced by radio, television and online news organizations around the world. RTDNA received more than 4,300 entries this year, culminating in just 103 national awards. WITF took home two of those awards.

"We are thrilled to be a part of a celebration of great journalism. In a time when our industry is undergoing great change, it was wonderful to be among colleagues who are producing such amazing work," said WITF's News Director Tim Lambert. "We are dedicated to providing the best public service possible. I'm very proud Ben and Joe for the work they have done and will continue to do."

"WITF is committed to its mission to provide high quality, contextual journalism to the citizens of our region and beyond," said CEO and President Kathleen Pavelko. "We thank everyone whose generous support of WITF makes our mission possible."

The Stories 

 Allen chronicled the impact of the heroin epidemic in central Pennsylvania as part of the series, "Real Life | Real Issues: Drugs and Young People." His profile of the family of Anthony Perez, who died of a heroin overdose at age 23, was honored in the Hard News Feature category. It was Allen's first National Murrow.

"I'm tremendously honored to have one of my stories selected for this award. I hope this helps raise awareness about the health crisis of a generation even just the slightest bit," Allen said. "I thank the Perez family for trusting me to tell their story."

The other Murrow award-winning story showcased creative writing and audio production. Joe Ulrich traveled to Dushore, Sullivan County to see the community's outhouse races first-hand and ended up with a truly memorable multimedia story. It was honored national for Best Use of Sound, giving Ulrich is first National Murrow.

"Painting a picture with audio is challenging and this particular piece took many hours of editing and critiquing," Ulrich said. "I had the help of some other great ears in our news department who provided feedback and suggestions." 

"In-depth, factual stories blended with creativity and sensitivity are a benchmark of the WITF news team," said WITF's Senior Vice President and Chief Content Officer Cara Williams Fry. 

Here are the previous National Edward R. Murrow Awards WITF has received since 2007:

About WITF 

WITF is a member-supported public media organization located in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. WITF provides regional news online at www.witf.org and broadcasts PBS and NPR programming to a 19-county area on WITF-TV and WITF-FM 89.5 and 93.3. 

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Cara Williams Fry, WITF's Senior Vice President and Chief Content Officer, Tim Lambert, WITF's Multimedia News Director and Morning Edition Host, and Ben Allen, Transforming Health Editor / Reporter attend the RTDNA National Edward R. Murrow Awards Gala in New York City on October 10, 2016.

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