In all the discussion of journalism’s economic troubles and the need to embrace technological change, it can be easy to forget some of the basic tenets of good journalism. Reflecting the community in your coverage is still critical, and the 2009 National RTNDA/UNITY Awards honor a group of broadcasters who have done that extremely well.
MSNBC’s winning entry profiles a young man named David Wilson who traces his roots back to the days of slavery and then finds the descendants of the family who owned his family. KMOV-TV in St. Louis committed to an ongoing exploration of race relations in that city and NPR explored the phenomenon of Native American boarding schools. The local radio award winner was WERN-FM in Madison, Wisc., which delved into the area’s Hmong-American experience.
These entries make for compelling viewing and listening on one hand and may also act as a source of inspiration for other journalists looking to tell stories about the many different faces that make up America.