Newspro: The duPont Awards
Telling the Story
The 13 winners of this year’s Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Award for excellence in broadcast journalism are an eclectic mix of international reporting, results-oriented community journalism, sweeping inquiries into inequity in healthcare and the country’s financial collapse, classic investigations into government waste and cover-up and an environmental documentary... On Page 13 and On Page 14
- Profiling Best of the Best
On Friday, Jan. 16, PBS will broadcast “Telling the Truth: The Best in Broadcast Journalism,” the annual look at the winners of the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Awards for excellence in the field. ABC News correspondent Bob Woodruff will host this special “best of” compilation... On Page 13 and On Page 14
- WFAA-TV, Dallas: ‘Money for Nothing,’ ‘A Passing Offensive,’ and ‘The Buried and the Dead’
In the 20 years the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Awards jury has been handing out a Gold Baton, the award—its most prestigious—has never gone to a local TV station. This year, it’s going to WFAA-TV, the ABC affiliate in Dallas/Fort Worth, which earned the top honor for what the jury saw as the station’s continuing commitment to outstanding investigative reporting... On Page 14
- CNN & Christiane Amanpour: 'God's Warriors'
When it came time to judge “God’s Warriors,” CNN’s three-part series on religious extremism, the jurors were impressed with the commitment of resources that it represented. “The ambition of that series and the sweeping nature of it and the time and effort that went into it, yielding such incredible results, really made it award-worthy,” said Abi Wright, director of the awards program... On Page 16
- California Newsreel, Vital Pictures & PBS: ‘Unnatural Causes: Is Inequality Making Us Sick?'
The Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Awards inform the industry and the public about television and radio journalism that has made an important contribution to communities and to the nation. Among the winners in the category of documentary film is PBS’ “Unnatural Causes: Is Inequality Making Us Sick?,” a seven-part, four-hour series that investigates how health disorders in the United States are related to income and race... On Page 16
- Current TV & Christof Putzel: 'From Russia With Hate'
Provoked by shocking, violent videos disseminated on the Internet of people being beaten, Current TV correspondent Christof Putzel and his co-producer/videographer Lauren Cerre traveled to Russia to investigate the rise of a neo-Nazi faction that was inciting ethnic violence... On Page 18
- Safari Media, ITVS, Chris Sheridan & Patty Kim for PBS: ‘Abduction: The Megumi Yokota Story’
PBS’ weekly film series “Independent Lens” is no stranger to the duPont Awards. In fact, in 2006, “Seoul Train,” a film about human trafficking, was an award-winning entry from the series. “Independent Lens” will be honored again this week for “Abduction: The Megumi Yokota Story,” a powerful portrait of a family’s suffering after their daughter is abducted from Japan to North Korea. The film was written, directed and produced by Patty Kim and Chris Sheridan, and feature director Jane Campion (“The Piano”) lent her expertise as executive producer... On Page 18
- ABC News, Tim Hetherington & Sebastian Junger for ‘Nightline’: ‘Nightline—The Other War: Afganistan’
Six months behind enemy lines in Afghanistan. That’s how long a team of journalists spent embedded with the United States Army’s 2nd Platoon of the 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team, gathering dramatic stories and footage for “Nightline’s” “The Other War: Afghanistan” for ABC News... On Page 19
- HBO, Tom Lennon & Ruby Yang: ‘Cinemax Reel Life: The Blood of Yingzhou’
“The Blood of Yingzhou District,” an HBO Documentary Films presentation, takes viewers to a remote, poverty-stricken region of China, where AIDS has taken a terrifying toll on the population. Around 500 children have been orphaned by the disease, a small but heartbreaking fraction of an estimated 75,000 children affected throughout China... On Page 20
- WJLA-TV, Washington, D.C., & Roberta Baskin: ‘Drilling for Dollars: Children’s Dentistry investigation’
Opening with video of a 4-year-old boy restrained in a dental office and screaming in pain, “Drilling for Dollars” is difficult to watch, even for the experienced investigative news team that produced it. Investigative reporter Roberta Baskin of Washington, D.C.’s Allbritton Communications-owned ABC affiliate WJLA-TV broke the story of children on Medicaid being subjected to abusive dental practices. She started working on the story after receiving a tip from one of the clinic’s fired dental assistants who objected to the treatment... On Page 20
- WTVT-TV, Tampa, & Doug Smith: ‘Small Town Injustice’
The complex legal and emotional saga at the heart of WTVT-TV’s “Small Town Justice” began on May 11, 2001, when a fatal accident on a Florida state highway killed Nona Moore and her 8-year-old daughter Lindsey. Two other girls survived the crash, which occurred when the driver of a tomato truck rolled over the family van... On Page 21
- Oregon Public Broadcasting: ‘The Silent Invasion’
Oregon Public Broadcasting’s documentary, “The Silent Invasion,” tells of invasive plants, animals and insects and the threats they pose to the environment and agriculture. However, the story doesn’t just affect the Pacific Northwest region where it was broadcast... On Page 21
- Maintaining Standards
Abi Wright was named the successor to Jonnet Abeles, the longtime director of the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Awards, in July 2008. She came to Columbia from the Committee to Protect Journalists, where she was communications director, and before that was CPJ’s Asia program coordinator. Before joining CPJ, she was a television producer in NBC News’ Moscow bureau and elsewhere...