‘This Week,’ KING-TV Among Cronkite Winners

Mar 10, 2009  •  Post A Comment

The University of Southern California’s Annenberg School of Journalism named ABC News’ “This Week With George Stephanopoulos” and “Now on PBS” as the national winners of its 2009 Walter Cronkite Awards and gave a special citation to CBS’ Kate Couric for national impact on the 2008 campaign.
KING-TV in Seattle and WGAL-TV in Lancaster, Penn., and Greg Fox of WESH-TV, in Winter Park, Fla., won awards for local broadcasts.
Also, Hearst-Argyle took its fifth straight honor for its commitment to airing political content.
Mr. Stephanopoulos won his second Cronkite Award for his show’s “On the Trail” series, which took the host out of the studio over a period of two years during the campaign to interview all of the presidential contenders. Judges praised the incisive and compelling nature of the reports, as well as his thorough preparation.
“NOW on PBS” was recognized for “meticulous reporting and for seeing the issues through voters’ eyes and experiences.” Judges mentioned the “excellent coverage” in the report “New Voters in the New West,” which showed how both political parties sought to attract and hold first-time voters on college campuses and among New Mexico’s large Hispanic population.
Ms. Couric was honored for her multipart interview with Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, running mate of Republican presidential nominee John McCain. The awards committee praised Ms. Couric for her “extraordinary, persistent and detailed” interviews, which judges called a “defining moment in the 2008 presidential campaign.”
KING-TV earned its third award in its category for its comprehensive coverage of candidates and issues that exceed 100 minutes of political coverage a week. Judges noted a “thoughtful report” on an initiative legalizing physician-assisted suicide and praised the station for demonstrating “a strong commitment to political coverage” and for “covering tough issues and presenting them clearly and in a way that is interesting to watch.”
WGAL-TV, a first-time winner, was cited for dedicating eight full-time staff members to political coverage to offer viewers thought-provoking and visually engaging stories about the presidential campaign, as well as congressional and state-level races. Judges made special note of the “surprisingly probing and revealing interviews with Sens. Obama and McCain” and the overall “entertaining, engaging and innovative reporting.”
Mr. Fox won his second award for excellent journalistic analysis and helping voters evaluate what candidates say in a “Truth Tests” series. Judges praised his work as “comprehensive, innovative, engaging and compelling” and added, “This should be sent out to every station as a model.”
Hearst-Argyle Television was honored for its continued commitment to airing political coverage on all its 25 stations. In 2008, that included increasing “candidate-centered” coverage in prime newscasts to 10 minutes daily.
“Judges were impressed by the work of several stations, including a report on voters tricked into signing anti-affirmative action initiatives, and a how-to on hacking electronic voting machines.”
Awards also went to News 8, the Austin, Texas, local cable station, for impressive, well-edited and ethnically diverse political reports.; to Wisconsin Public Television for covering issues via compelling stories about real people; and to Jo Wan, KTSF, San Francisco, for her Mandarin-language reports on minority and female presidential candidates and the importance of Asian voters.


  1. It is totally unbelievable to me that Ms. Couric could get an award for anything that she reports. Her interviews with Sarah Palin were disgusting and no credit to her, for sure.

  2. I feel like Couric did her job by simply asking questions and letting Palin hang herself. Her interview with Palin may have been disgusting but that was only because it highlighted how inept Palin was. It’s unfortunate because Palin may have had a future in politics on a national scale but the Republican party brought her out too early. My Democrat friends are donating to her PAC in the hope that she will get the GOP nomination in 2012. That ought to tell you something.

  3. She is a joke!! Award for what, getting zero put in office. Keep pating yourselfs on your backs with your “awards”

  4. Disgusting! Couric gets awarded and lauded for being a filthy lying mouthpiece for the liberal media socialists who blatantly dishonored the concept of a free press during the ’08 election! Wow, perhaps her beloved President will give her a special appointment as Czar of Communication for his administration.

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