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JPR News Wins 4 Regional, 4 National Awards

Murrow Awards Logo

The Jefferson Public Radio newsroom is among this year's winners of the regional Edward R. Murrow Awards, the regional SPJ Contest, and the PMJA Awards.

The Murrows are presented by the Radio Television Digital News Association to recognize outstanding broadcast and online journalism. JPR won in the Hard News category in RTDNA's NW small market division. That's made up of public and commercial radio stations in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Montana and Alaska.

This is the fourth year running JPR has won in the Hard News category. Regional Murrow winners are automatically entered in the national Edward R. Murrow competition. National winners will be announced in June.

JPR also took home three awards from the 2020 Society of Professional Journalists Region 10 Excellence in Journalism Contest. This competition is one of the largest of its kind in the nation. It honors journalists across Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Montana and Alaska.

JPR won a first-place award in the Audio: Social Equity Reporting. It also won two second-place certificates: one in the Audio: Social Equity Reporting category, and another in the Audio: Government & Politics Reporting category. JPR competed in the small newsroom division.

Nationally, JPR won four awards in the 2021 Public Media Journalists Association Awards. JPR won First Place in the COVID-19 Feature and News Feature categories, as well as Second Place in the Enterprise and Social Justice Feature categories.

Listen To The Winning Entries

In The Wake Of The Wildfires, Some Children Are Suffering From Extreme Stress And Anxiety
by April Ehrlich

Hundreds of students in Talent and Phoenix lost their homes to the Almeda Fire this September, just a week before school was supposed to start. Now some of them are showing signs of extreme stress and anxiety, causing school leaders and parents to consider resuming in-person classes amid a pandemic.

This piece won in the Hard News category for the 2021 regional Edward R. Murrow Awards, as well as First Place in the COVID-19 Feature category of the 2021 PMJA Awards.

County Alert System Left Many Without Notifications During The Almeda Fire
by Erik Neumann

When the Almeda Drive Fire burned through communities in Talent and Phoenix, Oregon, many wondered why there wasn’t more emergency evacuation information. The gaps in Jackson County’s alert system left many without critical information. And the same type of system is used across Oregon and California.

This piece won Second Place in the Enterprise category of the 2021 PMJA Awards, as well as Second Place in the Audio: Government & Politics Reporting category of the SPJ Region 10 Excellence in Journalism Contest.

Police As Social Workers: Critics Question Officers' Role In Addressing Homelessness
by April Ehrlich

Police officers often deal with cases involving drug addiction, mental illness, and homelessness. These often require skills that are more like social work than law enforcement. But is using police the best way to deal with social issues such as homelessness in Jackson County?

This piece won First Place in the News Feature category of the 2021 PMJA Awards.

Ashland Grapples With Shooting Death Of 19-Year-Old Aidan Ellison
by April Ehrlich

A Black teenager — Aidan Allison, 19 — was killed by a white middle-aged man who confronted him for playing loud music. Ellison's death is causing soul searching in the mostly white community where he lived.

This piece won Second Place in the Social Justice Feature category of the 2021 PMJA Awards, and First Place in the Audio: Social Equity Reporting category of the SPJ Region 10 Excellence in Journalism Contest.

Klamath COVID-19 Outbreak Shows Risks To Farmworkers
by Erik Neumann

Health officials announced an outbreak of 59 cases of COVID-19 on Thursday at an agricultural operation in Southern Oregon near Klamath Falls. It’s just one local example of how Latinos, and farmworkers in particular, are at heightened risk during the coronavirus pandemic.

This piece won Second Place in the Audio: Social Equity Reporting category of the SPJ Region 10 Excellence in Journalism Contest.