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WKSU Recognized with Nine Ohio Excellence in Journalism Awards

Ohio Excellence in Journalism Awards

WKSU was honored by the Press Club of Cleveland with nine Ohio Excellence in Journalism Awards at a ceremony on June 1 at the House of Blues in downtown Cleveland.  The station won five first-place and the best-in-show award for Best Newscast, which WKSU staff has received in four of the past five years. Award entries were judged by a panel of journalism professionals from press clubs and news publications across the country.

WKSU winners of 2018 Ohio Excellence in Journalism Awards from the Press Club of Cleveland are:

  • Best in Show – Radio Newscast, Major Market, Host/Producer Amanda Rabinowitz for WKSU’s broadcasts of NPR’s Morning Edition.

Rabinowitz works with a student assistant producer to create newscasts reflecting breaking and developing news affecting regional communities. 

  • First Place – News Writing, Reporter/Producer M.L. Schultze for “An Akron Mother and Her Sons Plan for the Once Unimaginable: Separation and Deportation.”

Schultze reported on a woman who, because of an unintentional mistake, faced being deported and leaving her sons, one of whom has Down’s syndrome, behind. 

  • First Place – Public Service, News Staff for “Gerrymandering: Shading the Lines.”

A five-part series examining the process of defining Congressional Districts in Ohio. Judges said: Fascinating piece – excellent reporting.


  • First Place – Human Interest, Reporter/Producer Amanda Rabinowitz for “Shuffle: Sofar Sounds Marks Three Years of Secret, Intimate Concerts in Cleveland.”

A segment in Rabinowitz’s music-centered weekly segment, which debuted in 2017. Judges said: Good writing, good use of sound.

  • First Place – Use of Sound, Reporter/Producer Kabir Bhatia for “The Dragon Invasion of Turkeyfoot Lake Could Net About $20,000 For Breast Cancer Awareness.”

Judges said: Excellent use of sound here. Nearly every part of this story is emphasized by an underlying sound - it puts the listener on the shores of Turkeyfoot Lake. Sound makes a good story rich and sumptuous.

  • First Place – Radio News, Schultze for “With 1,200 Losing Their Jobs, Lordstown Hopes the Cycle Turns and Plans for a New Economy.”

Judges said: An interesting, well-researched look at an unexpected downside to lower gas prices. Good interviews, solid writing, captures the uncertainty of the population.

  • Second Place – Radio News Website, Director for IT and Engineering Chuck Poulton for “WKSU.org.”

  • Second Place – On-going Coverage, Schultze, Bhatia, Mark Arehart and Tim Rudell for “The Revitalization of the City of Akron”

  • Second Place – Documentary, Schultze for “An Akron Refugee Story: From Surviving to Thriving.”

The Ohio Excellence in Journalism contest is a statewide competition for the best in print, broadcast and digital journalism.  More than 750 entries were submitted for consideration.