For the third straight year, Wyoming Public Radio News has been awarded three Edward R. Murrow awards for reporting excellence. WPR won in Region 3 after facing off against public and commercial radio stations from Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, and Arizona. The awards were announced by the Radio Television Digital News Association or RTDNA.
Aaron Schrank won in the Hard News category for his feature on 18-year-old Laramie High School senior Rihanna Kelver who fought hard to educate the school district about transgender students like her. She announced her candidacy for the school board to keep the issue alive.
Melodie Edwards won for Best Use of Sound for her story on the intimate lives of mountain lions. Edwards combined audio and video to present a very popular story for listeners and social media users.
“Melodie has a strong knack for using sound in her stories,” said WPR News Director Bob Beck, who noted that Edwards won a similar award two years ago.
Edwards and Schrank collaborated to win the Murrow award for Best Series for their compelling two-part look at Native American boarding schools. The first part of the series looked at the fight by the Northern Arapaho tribe to get remains returned to the Wind River Reservation.
Part two looked at the difference between the current boarding schools and the notorious schools of the past.
“I think this series told a story that people outside of the reservation knew little about. It was fantastic journalism,” said Beck. “Murrow awards are some of the most respected in the world, so it’s an honor to win three. It not only honors these outstanding reporters but our entire newsroom as well.”
All three awards will now be considered for national honors.